Monthly Archives: January 2016

Presidential super PACs lost steam in second half of 2015

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, center, waves to church members after attending a service at First Christian Church with his wife, Melania, top left, Sunday, Jan. 31, 2016, in Council Bluffs, Iowa. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)WASHINGTON (AP) — Sunday is the first time in six months that the public has learned the names of the biggest donors in presidential politics. These contributors give to super political action committees that can accept unlimited amounts of money and are aligned with specific candidates.

Trump, Cruz tamp down expectations for uncertain Iowa vote

U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks to supporters at a campaign rally in DubuqueBy Steve Holland and James Oliphant DES MOINES, Iowa/COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (Reuters) – Republicans Donald Trump and Ted Cruz battled on Sunday to persuade their supporters to turn out and tried to lower expectations on how well they will do in the first U.S. presidential nominating contest in Iowa on Monday. Iowa will set the tone in the race for the Nov. 8 election, offering the first measure of how strong outsider candidates like billionaire businessman Trump and democratic socialist Bernie Sanders stand against more traditional politicians like Republican Senator Marco Rubio of Florida and Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton. The day before Iowa's caucuses, Trump and Cruz, a senator from Texas and conservative Tea Party favorite, reflected anxiety about the unpredictability of the race in the Midwestern state as they and other candidates made their final pitches at rallies across Iowa.

Syria opposition considers U.N. offer after ‘positive’ talks

Children stand near damaged vehicles as residents and soldiers loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad inspect damage after a suicide attack in Sayeda Zeinab, a district of southern DamascusBy Tom Miles and John Irish GENEVA (Reuters) – Syria's main opposition group is considering a proposal by U.N. special envoy Staffan de Mistura that could pave the way to the delegation pressing ahead with talks after holding their first meeting with him on Sunday, a Western diplomatic source said. Representatives of the Saudi-backed Higher Negotiation Committee (HNC), which includes political and militant opponents of President Bashar al-Assad, had warned earlier in the day that they may yet walk away from the Geneva talks unless the suffering of civilians in the five-year conflict is eased. With Islamic State bombers killing over 60 people near the country's holiest Shi'ite shrine, the Syrian government's chief delegate retorted that the blasts in Damascus merely confirmed the link between the opposition and terrorism – even though Islamic State has been excluded from the talks.