Welcome to The WonkLine, a daily 10 a.m. roundup of the latest news about health care, the economy, national security, immigration and climate policy. This is what we’re reading. Tell us what you found in the comments section below, and subscribe to the RSS feed. Also, you can now follow The Wonk Room on Twitter.
CNN reports that “Afghanistan’s opium production dropped dramatically this year partly because of new aggressive drug-fighting tactics in the country.” According to the report from the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, “production dipped by 10 percent this year, while cultivation fell by 22 percent.”
Today, Israel and the Palestinians “held their highest-level talks since Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu took office, focusing on economic issues while formal peace negotiations remained stalled.”
Gordon Brown finally broke his silence on the decision to release the Lockerbie bomber, saying that he “respected” it. The Prime Minister denied allegations that Britain intervened over the release of Abdel Baset Ali al-Megrahi to further British business interests with Libya.
The Latino Policy Coalition claims that a 3-year analysis of their nationwide polls shows “Democrats have increased their ratings on top Latino priority issues like healthcare reform, immigration reform and jobs and the economy.”
Immigration advocates are anxious to see if Florida Gov. Charlie Crist’s pick for a temporary Senate seat will come out in favor of immigration reform given that Crist himself is a “question mark” on the issue.
The family of a Las Vegas woman who was murdered is worried that her 10-year-old son — who is the “prosecution’s star witness” — is not getting the proper victim’s services because he is not a US citizen.
A new report from Brookings argues that “short-term cost-savings measures, such as cutting Medicare reimbursement rates across the board, cannot succeed in controlling exploding health care costs over the long-term.” “It’s important to see all these steps as part of a comprehensive approach,” said Mark McClellan, the director of the Engelberg Center for Health Care Reform at The Brookings Institute.
The Treatment asks, what does Olympia Snowe want out of health care reform?
The Mortgage Bankers Association “is calling for Congress to transform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac into several smaller privately held companies that would issue mortgage securities carrying an explicit government guarantee” in a plan being released today.
Yesterday, the AFL-CIO released the results of a new survey from Peter Hart Associates “that found that about a third of workers under 35 live at home with their parents, and they’re far less likely to have health care or job security than they were ten years ago.”
Felix Salmon awards FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair “the prize for the weakest argument ever against a single strong bank regulator.”
While the introduction of a climate bill has been delayed in the Senate, the Environmental Protection Agency has “submitted a rule to the White House Office of Management and Budget” to regulate “industrial sources of more than 25,000 tons a year of CO2.”
“Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, the world’s largest living organism, is under grave threat from climate warming and coastal development, and its prospects of survival are poor,” a major new report found today.
“The world’s seas could rise by more than a meter by 2100″ as ice sheets disappear in Greenland and western Antarctica, the World Wildlife Federation said in a report today. “If we allow the Arctic to get too warm, it is doubtful whether we will be able to keep these feedbacks under control.”