Senate approves debt limit increase

Senate approves debt limit increase

Legislation to raise the federal debt limit and prevent a crippling government default cleared Congress on Wednesday with an awkward assist from top Senate Republican leaders who were forced into a politically treacherous vote engineered by tea party favorite Ted Cruz. The Texas Republican’s maneuver forced several GOP colleagues, including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of […]

Boehner’s retreat leads to new debt limit approval

Boehner’s retreat leads to new debt limit approval

It was once the backbone of the House Republican majority — the hard-line stand that brought President Barack Obama to the negotiating table and yielded more than $2 trillion in deficit reduction. On Tuesday, it abruptly vanished, the victim of Republican disunity and a president determined not to bargain again. During the summer budget negotiations […]

Big companies get ‘wiggle room’ on Obamacare

Big companies get ‘wiggle room’ on Obamacare

Big retail stores, hotels, restaurants and other companies with lots of low-wage and part-time workers are among the main beneficiaries of the Obama administration’s latest tweak to health care rules. Companies with 100 or more workers will be able to avoid the biggest of two potential employer penalties in the Affordable Care Act by offering […]

Another Obamacare concession: A fatal setback?

Another Obamacare concession: A fatal setback?

It may take weeks to render a verdict on the Obama administration’s latest health care concession to employers. But that could make a difference for Democrats battling to keep control of the Senate in the fall congressional elections. All-important details are buried in more than 200 pages of dense Treasury regulations released Monday. The biggest […]

What now for U.S. aid to Afghanistan?

What now for U.S. aid to Afghanistan?

Uncertainty over how many U.S. troops might remain in Afghanistan beyond this year has trickled down to American diplomats and aid workers, whose efforts to develop the still mostly primitive country face a drawdown of their own because of security fears. In boosting security forces, educating young girls, launching mobile phone technology and providing other […]

Donors start to have doubts about Chris Christie

Donors start to have doubts about Chris Christie

Where just months ago Republicans brimmed with pride over Chris Christie‘s landslide re-election, doubts about his prospects as a potential presidential candidate have begun creeping into the minds of some donors in key states, according to some GOP fundraisers. The celebrity New Jersey governor is in Chicago Tuesday to raise money for the Republican Governors […]

Rubio proposes higher education overhaul

Rubio proposes higher education overhaul

Addressing what he calls a “growing opportunity gap” between people with and without advanced educations, Sen. Marco Rubio is calling for state-accredited alternatives to four-year colleges and income-based repayments for college loans. The Florida senator and possible 2016 Republican presidential contender also says Congress should establish an independent accrediting agency to assess free courses offered […]

Sexual assaults in military bring only light punishments

Sexual assaults in military bring only light punishments

At U.S. military bases in Japan, most service members found culpable in sex crimes in recent years did not go to prison, according to internal Department of Defense documents. Instead, in a review of hundreds of cases filed in America’s largest overseas military installation, offenders were fined, demoted, restricted to their bases or removed from […]