Capitol Hillbillies

Poll shows Americans blame Republicans for government shutdown

Poll shows Americans blame Republicans for government shutdown

Americans are holding Republicans primarily responsible for the partial government shutdown as public esteem sinks for all players in the impasse, President Barack Obama among them, according to a new poll. It’s a struggle with no heroes. The Associated Press-GfK survey, out Wednesday, affirms expectations by many in Washington — Republicans among them — that […]

Senate Dems to try and pass increase in debt ceiling

Senate Dems to try and pass increase in debt ceiling

Democrats controlling the Senate are planning to try to pass a stand-alone measure to increase the government’s borrowing cap, challenging Republicans to a filibuster showdown that could unnerve financial markets as the deadline to a first-ever default on U.S. obligations draws closer. A spokesman said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid could unveil the measure as […]

Republicans see no problem with government defaulting on debt

Republicans see no problem with government defaulting on debt

The Obama administration says a U.S. default would be “catastrophic.” Economists say it could plunge the country into recession and prompt a global financial meltdown. To many Republicans, however, the prospect of the world’s lone superpower juggling its bills doesn’t seem so bad. The government could muddle through without a debt-ceiling increase as long as […]

Budget fight a crash course on how Congress fails to function

Budget fight a crash course on how Congress fails to function

If majorities in both the House and Senate would vote to reopen the government with no strings attached, or vote to repeal the new health care law’s sales tax on heart pacemakers and MRI machines, then why isn’t that happening? The rancorous budget fight offers a crash course in the arcane ways and language of […]

Short-term debt limit hike under consideration by Senate Democrats

Short-term debt limit hike under consideration by Senate Democrats

Senate Democrats are drafting legislation to raise the nation’s debt limit without the type of unrelated conditions that Republicans have said they intend to demand, officials said Monday, as the White House signaled it would accept even a brief extension in borrowing authority to prevent an unprecedented default. The details of the emerging measure were […]

Divided Congress enters crucial week in budget, debt fight

Divided Congress enters crucial week in budget, debt fight

As the U.S. government moved into the second week of a shutdown on Monday with no end in sight, a deadlocked U.S. Congress also confronted an October 17 deadline to increase the nation’s borrowing power or risk default. The last big confrontation over the debt ceiling, in August, 2011, ended with an eleventh-hour agreement under […]

Defiant Boehner to Obama: No concessions, no hike in debt limit

Defiant Boehner to Obama: No concessions, no hike in debt limit

The United States moved closer to the possibility of the first-ever default on the government’s debt Sunday as Speaker John Boehner adamantly ruled out a House vote on a straightforward bill to boost the borrowing authority without concessions from President Barack Obama. With no resolution in sight, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew warned that Congress is […]

Republicans start to realize their strategy isn’t working

Republicans start to realize their strategy isn’t working

With their leadership clinging to its strategy of demanding changes to the health care law, some rank-and-file Republicans acknowledged Saturday that ending the US government shutdown requires a new game plan. Without question, a repeal or delay of the law known as “Obamacare” remains a top priority for Republican lawmakers, who for weeks have insisted […]

Out of work federal employees slated to get back pay

Out of work federal employees slated to get back pay

    Their government has failed to keep the doors open and has told federal workers to stay off the job as the political parties fight over spending and health care in austere times. Now Congress and President Barack Obama are sending this message to the 800,000 sidelined government employees: We don’t know when the […]

Congress set to grant back pay to federal workers idled by shutdown

Congress set to grant back pay to federal workers idled by shutdown

A partial government shutdown enters its fifth day, with Congress convening for a session that promises no progress in breaking the impasse but will at least offer back pay to furloughed federal workers. The GOP House is scheduled Saturday to vote on legislation backed by the White House and congressional Democrats that would make sure […]