Senate

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 […]

Right wing obsession with Obamacare increases threat of a shutdown

Right wing obsession with Obamacare increases threat of a shutdown

A conservative challenge to the president’s health care law has the federal government teetering on the brink of a partial shutdown. The Senate has the next move on must-do legislation required to keep the government open past midnight on Monday, and the Democratic-led chamber is expected to reject the latest effort from House Republicans to […]

Will either side blink? Don’t bet on it happening

Will either side blink?  Don’t bet on it happening

With the government teetering on the brink of partial shutdown, congressional Republicans vowed Sunday to keep using an otherwise routine federal funding bill to try to attack the president’s health care law. Congress was closed for the day after a post-midnight vote in the GOP-run House to delay by a year key parts of the […]

Undecided lawmakers control Syria vote

Undecided lawmakers control Syria vote

The fate of a congressional resolution to authorize President Barack Obama’s planned military strikes on Syria hinged on Thursday on scores of undecided U.S. lawmakers, with party loyalty appearing increasingly irrelevant. Even after congressional hearings featuring Obama’s secretaries of state and defense, a half dozen closed-door briefings and phone calls from Obama himself, it was […]

Road bill hits GOP pothole

Road bill hits GOP pothole

A measure awarding generous funding to road and bridge projects, community development grants and housing help for the poor is running into stiff Republican opposition in the Senate. The bill appeared likely to fall prey Thursday to a filibuster by Republicans unhappy that the legislation breaks through budget limits required by automatic spending cuts known […]

Senate avoids a meltdown…for now

Senate avoids a meltdown…for now

A bipartisan Senate pact has smoothed the confirmation path for a batch of President Barack Obama’s nominations and removed, for now, a Democratic threat to impose procedural changes weakening minority Republicans’ clout. Yet there are no guarantees that the conflict won’t flare anew the next time a White House appointment stirs controversy. A day after […]

Senators head for rowdy showdown on rule changes

Senators head for rowdy showdown on rule changes

Senators prepared for a potentially rancorous day Tuesday — even by recent standards of partisan unpleasantness — as Democratic leaders threatened to change filibuster rules to stop Republicans from blocking White House nominees for top executive jobs. Several Senate votes were scheduled to test whether Republicans will allow simple-majority confirmations of a handful of long-stalled […]

Senate to try once again to pass new student loan bill

Senate to try once again to pass new student loan bill

Senate Democrats are trying to restore lower interest rates on student loans, a week after Congress’ inaction caused those rates to double. A procedural vote is scheduled for Wednesday on a Senate measure that would return rates on subsidized Stafford loans to 3.4 percent for one year. An earlier attempt in the Senate to keep […]

Immigration focus shifting to the House

Immigration focus shifting to the House

Attention is shifting to the House and its conservative majority after the Senate passed a landmark immigration bill opening the door to U.S. citizenship to millions while pouring billions of dollars into securing the border with Mexico. The bill’s prospects are highly uncertain in the Republican-led House, where conservatives generally oppose citizenship for immigrants living […]

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