In the morning news

Politico: Tobacco companies win in SCHIP fight

In addition to the television ad campaign it is running with the AMA, AARP's lobbying effort will also include office visits to lawmakers, forums in targeted states and direct mail and e-mail pushes, said the group's spokesman, Drew Nannis. "To give people in Medicare access to doctors and to protect premiums, Congress should stop subsidizing private insurance companies in Medicare with excess payments," Nannis said.

Associated Press: Social Security Only Going Up 2.3 Pct.

David Sloane, director of government relations for AARP, which represents people 50 and older, said the cost-of-living adjustment is critical because so many depend on Social Security for most of their retirement income.

Associated Press: Digital TV Switch Needs More Awareness

But Federal Communications Commission Chairman Kevin Martin said in prepared testimony that the agency is devoting significant resources to ensure a smooth transition and has been actively promoting consumer awareness. In the last several months, he said agency staff have attended 30 conferences sponsored by various advocacy groups, such as the AARP and National Council of La Raza. They have also reached out to various elderly organizations, minority, non-English and rural communities and people with disabilities as well as through various media outlets, he added.

Associated Press: WH hopefuls prep big spending plans

The top candidates on both sides of the 2008 presidential contest have shown their eagerness to spend tax dollars. But their priorities reflect widely differing views of the role of government in addressing complex problems.

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