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House Compromise Effort Slips; Senate Rushes Toward Deal

Bill pulled from Rules Committee at the last minute because of a lack of conservative support as Thursday deadline looms.

by
Bill Straub

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October 15, 2013 - 9:05 pm
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WASHINGTON – Congress descended into a situation approaching chaos on Tuesday as House Republican leaders proved incapable of mustering the votes necessary to adopt a proposal to reopen the federal government and stave off default.

The focus now returns to the Senate, which was closing in on a bipartisan deal before Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, of Kentucky, recessed high-level talks with Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid, of Nevada, to provide the lower chamber with an opportunity to offer a solution.

That prospect crashed early Tuesday evening when House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) was unable to attract enough GOP support to pass a plan that House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, of California, characterized as “reckless.”

The reluctance of some Republican lawmakers to get behind a Boehner plan apparently stems from a threat issued by Heritage Action, a conservative organization tied to the Heritage Foundation think tank, which announced it would take a dim view of anyone who supported the measure.

All this, and more, occurred as the federal government approached an excruciating Oct. 17 deadline. The Treasury Department and the White House have made it clear that Washington is about to bump up against its $16.7 trillion debt ceiling, meaning the government will no longer be authorized to borrow the money necessary to pay its bills. Raising the debt ceiling requires congressional action, which has not occurred.

In addition, the federal government entered the third week of a partial shutdown on Tuesday, brought on because Congress has been unable to approve a temporary spending plan, known as a continuing resolution.

It appeared on Monday night that the Senate was rushing toward an agreement. Both Reid and McConnell expressed optimism that an accommodation could be reached that finally closed the ongoing crisis. The blueprint of the Senate deal funded the government to Jan. 15, authorized the federal government to borrow funds through Feb. 7 and laid the groundwork for negotiations over federal spending and taxation.

In addition, the proposal recommended a few minor changes to the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare, the healthcare reform law that launched the ongoing imbroglio. A provision sought by Republicans would establish stronger regulations to assure that those seeking subsidies to buy health insurance, as required under the law, are qualified. In exchange, Democrats would get a delay until 2015 in assessing a tax on health insurance policies that is expected to add about $63 per individual to the cost beginning in January.

But on Tuesday morning Boehner announced that the House – which had failed in prior attempts to resolve the contretemps with the White House – was going to make yet another attempt to end the standoff. The framework for that Boehner proposal opened the federal government and raised the debt ceiling but changed the conditions under consideration by the Senate, adopting instead a two-year repeal of a medical device tax and a provision eliminating the employer healthcare contribution for members of Congress and White House officials.

It quickly became obvious Tuesday morning, however, that Boehner couldn’t attract enough votes to get the package through the lower chamber. Tea Party conservatives within the caucus maintained the effort didn’t wring sufficient concessions from the White House, particularly as they related to Obamacare.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
In all this brouhaha, nobody seems to have noticed that THE DEBT CLOCK HAS BEEN TURNED OFF FOR A MONTH OR MORE! We are already waaaay beyond the ceiling and NOBODY in the government or media has noticed. Wouldn't acknowdgement of that simple FACT make all of this "political theatre" kind of irrelevant? (But let's just ignore that little inconvenient truth!) We are a nation of intentionally uninformed idiots!
45 weeks ago
45 weeks ago Link To Comment
Surely Fitch in the last para is bluffing. It is not legal for the Treasury to prioritize payments? What law prevents it? It is common sense for a payer to decide in which order he pays his debts. If he is unable to pay his debts as they come due then that is different. That is default. But that stage has not been reached. The Extravagant party might pretend that we must live beyond our means but I don't believe it.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (11)
All Comments   (11)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
my roomate's mother makes $87 hourly on the laptop. She has been fired from work for five months but last month her payment was $13386 just working on the laptop for a few hours. more information....WWW.Rush64.COM
45 weeks ago
45 weeks ago Link To Comment
my roomate's sister-in-law makes $75 every hour on the laptop. She has been out of work for 6 months but last month her paycheck was $20467 just working on the laptop for a few hours. >>>>>>>> WWW.JOBS60.ℂOM
45 weeks ago
45 weeks ago Link To Comment
Idiots, that is exactly who we have in the House..... and Rinos by the dozens in the Senate....
We do not need to do anything. Let the government be as it is... If we do not raise the debt limit then by this action we have the government on a defacto balanced schedule..... We are collecting enough taxes each month to pay all of the interest and pay all of the government expenses. The House does not need any help from the Senate to shut off all funding to ObamaCare. The House is the body in charge of spending money....
Just SHUTUP AND DO NOTHING, QUIT TRYING TO SHOOT YOURSELF IN THE FOOT. SHUTUP!!! YOU ARE ALL DAMN FOOLS. THIS GAME HAPPENS EVERY YEAR AND YOU NEVER SEEM TO LEARN.....
DO NOT NEGOTCIATE, JUST SHUTUP...
45 weeks ago
45 weeks ago Link To Comment
As a Socialist Society what would be the best way to see the U.S.A. go in dealing with its debts and obligations under these 2 scenarios because it seems as though we are all socialists now given the kind of choices we are offered today ?

Would a default give Obama unprecedented presidential power?
http://www.foxnews.com/on-air/americas-newsroom/index.html#http://video.foxnews.com/v/2747976637001/would-a-default-give-obama-unprecedented-presidential-power/?playlist_id=86909
Sequesters, Shutdowns and Defaults
http://leconomistamascherato.blogspot.com/2013/10/sequesters-shutdowns-and-defaults.html
45 weeks ago
45 weeks ago Link To Comment
In all this brouhaha, nobody seems to have noticed that THE DEBT CLOCK HAS BEEN TURNED OFF FOR A MONTH OR MORE! We are already waaaay beyond the ceiling and NOBODY in the government or media has noticed. Wouldn't acknowdgement of that simple FACT make all of this "political theatre" kind of irrelevant? (But let's just ignore that little inconvenient truth!) We are a nation of intentionally uninformed idiots!
45 weeks ago
45 weeks ago Link To Comment
Heritage was going to include the vote on their rating of congress people. That is a bad thing? Maybe the GOP should have secret votes. Maybe the GOP is discovering the secret that the Dems learned a few years ago, the value of the Big Lie. Not only can you lie with impunity, people actually prefer lies more than the truth many times.

So a majority believe it's getting "warmer" when it's actually getting colder, you can print money to infinity and only good will come from it, and there is no limit to the debt - secret or acknowledged - the US can undertake.
45 weeks ago
45 weeks ago Link To Comment
Obamacare must be defeated....my mother is 72-years-old and a diabetic. Last year she had a pacemaker installed and it saved her life. She is now independent and has totally beaten her diabetes to the point her doctor took her off all her diabetes medicines. With Obamacare, she would have been denied the pacemaker and would surely be dead by now. These people who want to DESTROY AMERICAN MEDICINE are just pure evil and heartless bastards. People are pissed now by the cost(s)....just wait until their parents and loved ones face the death panels....we'll see a revolution then.

Remember BENGHAZI!
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Surely Fitch in the last para is bluffing. It is not legal for the Treasury to prioritize payments? What law prevents it? It is common sense for a payer to decide in which order he pays his debts. If he is unable to pay his debts as they come due then that is different. That is default. But that stage has not been reached. The Extravagant party might pretend that we must live beyond our means but I don't believe it.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
WMR: Exactly. Of Course the Treasury can decide what bills to pay with the money on hand. The credit rating of the US depends upon timely payment of its "sovereign obligations," which means paying the interest upon money it has borrowed. Paying Social Security, or contractors, or Obama's green fees? Not sovereign obligations. The main purpose for adhering to the debt limit is to force the Executive Branch to do its job -- to decide what gets paid, and suffer the resulting outrage from those whose votes it purchased with taxpayers' money.

In addition, the House passed a bill several weeks ago providing a schedule of priorities for the Treasury to follow.
45 weeks ago
45 weeks ago Link To Comment
Fitch is 50% owned by the Hearst Corporation. I smell an Obama-mania media rat!
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
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