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TRUE DC GRIDLOCK—WHEN EVEN POST OFFICE NAMINGS AREN'T MAKING IT. In just the latest sign of how gridlocked Washington has become, Congress is currently failing to pass even the most reliable of legislative standbys: naming post offices and federal buildings. For each of the last several Congresses, naming post-offices has been a staple of Congress’s work. In the 109th Congress, for example, 98 of the 482 laws passed by Congress—or 1 in 5—were post-office naming bills.
But so far, the current Congress has managed to name just 17 post offices and federal buildings, plus one national refuge (the “Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge”). Why the naming deficit? A general shutdown in Congressional productivity. So far, this Congress is on track to be the least productive in years. Read MORE.

HOW E-RETIREMENT PLANNING HELPS LOWER-INCOME SAVERS. Some progressives may believe that when it comes to protecting the retirement savings of lower- and moderate-income workers, paper beats e-mail in talking to workers about their retirement accounts. But PPI contributor Brian Martin argues not so. Brian makes the case for electronic delivery of retirement account information: it provides real-time information, encourages active management of assets (versus stuffing a statement into a drawer) and enables complex information to be "layered" in a way that promotes easier understanding. Despite these advantages, however, the Department of Labor still requires a default to paper. With regulatory reform high on the Obama Administration's list, e-delivery of retirement document is smart, simple and eminently doable. Read HERE.

NOW THAT THE GOP SIDESHOW IS OVER... In this week's election watch, PPI Senior Fellow Ed Kilgore dissects the Romney campaign's pivot to the general election from the carnage of the primaries. Have your Etch-a-Sketch handy! 


Enriching the Progressive Debate