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Who Will Run GOP Primary in Birmingham After JPMorgan Scheme Results in County Bankruptcy?

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Published on Mar 13, 2012

democracynow.org - As Mississippi and Alabama hold their Republican primaries, we go to Jefferson County, Alabama, where financial situation is so grim that cannot hire enough staff to run the today's election. Critics say Jefferson County, home to Birmingham, represents some of the worst consequences of the pro-corporate agenda backed by leading Republican candidates. Late last year, it filed the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history after failing to refinance nearly $4 billion in debt. Jefferson County was deep in the red after reaching a complicated scheme with Wall Street investors to finance the cost of rebuilding a broken sewer system. The county reached an agreement with the Wall Street giant JPMorgan to refinance through interest rate swaps, but later sued the firm after its debt ballooned on what was initially a $250 million project. Earlier this month, a bankruptcy judge ruled Jefferson County's bankruptcy filing can proceed, rejecting the pleas of creditors including JPMorgan Chase Bank and Bank of America. For more we're joined from Birmingham by Barnett Wright, a senior reporter who covers Jefferson County for The Birmingham News.

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