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2chambers: April, 2011

Posted at 10:50 AM ET, 04/22/2011

2chambers recesses

2chambers will be taking a break next week. (Alas, we’re not heading out of town for the royal wedding – our invite must have gotten lost in the mail.)

By Felicia Sonmez  |  10:50 AM ET, 04/22/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:02 PM ET, 04/21/2011

Markey, Franken grill Apple on iPhone location tracking

Two lawmakers have penned letters to Apple CEO Steve Jobs expressing concern over reports that the company’s iPhone and iPad have been recording users’ locations and timestamps.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  04:02 PM ET, 04/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:58 PM ET, 04/21/2011

Congressional approval rating down since January

The congressional approval rating is at its lowest point since the 112th Congress convened in early January, according to a Gallup poll released Thursday.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:58 PM ET, 04/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:50 PM ET, 04/21/2011

Mitch McConnell leads delegation to Afghanistan

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and four GOP senators traveled to Afghanistan this week, the second congressional delegation to visit during the spring recess.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:50 PM ET, 04/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:10 PM ET, 04/21/2011

Conrad: Deficit-reduction plan needs to happen this year

Senate Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), a member of the Senate’s bipartisan “Gang of Six” that is working on a comprehensive deficit-reduction plan, said that any plan that will bring down the country’s debt needs to happen this year or may potentially not happen at all.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  12:10 PM ET, 04/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:55 PM ET, 04/20/2011

Pelosi questions Boehner on DOMA lawyer in second letter

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Speaker John Boehner have become pen pals this week, sending a flurry of letters regarding the legal battle over the Defense of Marriage Act.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:55 PM ET, 04/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:18 PM ET, 04/20/2011

McConnell slams executive order to allow White House to demand political records before awarding contracts

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Wednesday strongly criticized a proposed executive order that would require companies seeking federal contracts to disclose political contributions.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:18 PM ET, 04/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:29 PM ET, 04/20/2011

A year out from BP oil spill, parties still sparring over drilling, response to tragedy

One year after the worst oil spill in the country’s history, lawmakers are still wrangling over off-shore drilling, the liability cap for spill-related damages and the Obama administration’s response to the incident.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  03:29 PM ET, 04/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:13 PM ET, 04/20/2011

John Boehner, House delegation visit Afghanistan

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) visited Afghanistan on Tuesday and Wednesday, the latest stop for a six-member delegation to the region during Congress’s spring recess.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:13 PM ET, 04/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:48 AM ET, 04/20/2011

Spending problem or revenue problem? Americans say it’s both

As lawmakers attend town halls discussing the debt problem, a new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows that a majority of Americans believes the country has both a revenue and a spending problem.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  11:48 AM ET, 04/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:10 PM ET, 04/19/2011

Republicans tap Kyl, Cantor for Biden-led deficit talks

The House and Senate Republican leaders have announced their delegates for the bipartisan, bicameral negotiations with the White House aimed at hammering out a deficit-reduction plan by late June.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:10 PM ET, 04/19/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:04 PM ET, 04/19/2011

Patriot Act debate will ramp up again next month

When Congress returns from a two-week recess early next month, much of the debate is likely to focus on the issue of raising the country’s debt ceiling. But lawmakers will also revisit the extension of three controversial provisions of the Patriot Act.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  04:04 PM ET, 04/19/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:08 PM ET, 04/19/2011

House sets $500,000 cap for Defense of Marriage Act lawyer

The House has set a salary cap of $500,000 for the outside counsel it has hired to defend the Defense of Marriage Act in court, according to a contract signed late last week.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  02:08 PM ET, 04/19/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:11 PM ET, 04/19/2011

Majority of those surveyed in CNN poll support same-sex marriage

In a new CNN poll, a majority of respondents say they support same-sex marriage.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  12:11 PM ET, 04/19/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:51 PM ET, 04/18/2011

White House to host deficit reduction talks at Blair House on May 5

The White House has set a date for the bipartisan, bicameral talks on deficit reduction outlined by President Obama last week, with the first meeting set to take place on May 5.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  06:51 PM ET, 04/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:56 PM ET, 04/18/2011

Pelosi writes letter to Boehner requesting DOMA lawyer’s contract

Pelosi and Boehner argue about the House’s hiring of an outside counsel to defend the Defense of Marriage Act.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:56 PM ET, 04/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:44 PM ET, 04/18/2011

On Tax Day, parties spar over extending cuts for wealthy, corporations

In a flurry of Tax Day statements, Democrats and Republicans both claimed credit for cutting taxes and took swipes at each other over the country’s fiscal path forward, particularly on the issue of taxes on the wealthy and on businesses.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:44 PM ET, 04/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:44 PM ET, 04/18/2011

Boehner: Justice Dept. funds should be used to pay for House defense of DOMA

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:44 PM ET, 04/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:44 PM ET, 04/18/2011

Lawmakers seize on Standard & Poor’s outlook in debt-ceiling debate

Democrats and Republicans reacted swiftly on Monday to the news that Standard & Poor’s had downgraded its outlook on America’s long-term credit rating from “stable” to “negative,” with each party seizing on the warning to back up its position in the escalating debt-ceiling debate.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  12:44 PM ET, 04/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:55 AM ET, 04/18/2011

Reid leads congressional delegation to China; Boehner travels to Pakistan

As Congress kicks off its two-week-long spring recess, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and nine other senators are taking a week-long trip to China, Reid’s office announced Monday.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  11:55 AM ET, 04/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:21 PM ET, 04/15/2011

Ahead of Ryan budget vote, party leaders sparred over plan’s impact on seniors

House Democratic and Republican leaders traded barbs Friday morning on Rep. Paul Ryan’s 2012 budget blueprint.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  04:21 PM ET, 04/15/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:35 PM ET, 04/15/2011

Nine environmental protesters arrested after singing in House gallery during budget debate

Nine protesters were arrested by the U.S. Capitol Police on Friday afternoon after they interrupted the budget debate by singing loudly from the House visitors’ gallery

By Felicia Sonmez  |  02:35 PM ET, 04/15/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:22 PM ET, 04/15/2011

House approves Ryan budget plan

Proposal would bring the budget into balance by 2030 and make $6.2 trillion in cuts.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  02:22 PM ET, 04/15/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:02 PM ET, 04/15/2011

In surprise move, House Democrats vote ‘present’ on conservative budget, forcing Republicans’ hand

House Democrats launched a surprise procedural offensive Friday regarding a conservative budget proposal – and fell just nine votes of succeeding.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:02 PM ET, 04/15/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:14 PM ET, 04/14/2011

Senate passes 2011 funding bill, rejects measures to defund Planned Parenthood and health care

The Senate on Thursday overwhelmingly passed a bill that would fund the federal government through the end of September. It now goes to President Obama for his signature.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  06:14 PM ET, 04/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:23 PM ET, 04/14/2011

Obama signs repeal of health-care law’s ‘1099’ tax-reporting rule

President Obama on Thursday signed into law a measure that repeals the unpopular 1099 tax-reporting provision of the national health-care law.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:23 PM ET, 04/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:35 PM ET, 04/14/2011

About one-third of House Democrats hold their votes on budget deal until near the end

It wasn’t until the budget deal passed the 218-vote threshold necessary for passage that about one-third of the House Democrats voted.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  04:35 PM ET, 04/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:16 PM ET, 04/14/2011

Nearly 70 percent of House Republican freshmen vote for spending-cut deal

Their support is an indication that the new class of conservatives is willing to back the House speaker.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  04:16 PM ET, 04/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:40 PM ET, 04/14/2011

House Republicans call ex-budget chief to clear up confusion on spending cuts

A Congressional Budget Office report caused confusion over the scope of spending cuts in the 2011 budget deal.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  02:40 PM ET, 04/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:35 PM ET, 04/14/2011

Boehner predicts spending-cut deal will pass in House today

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Thursday predicted that the House will pass the budget deal agreed to late last week by the White House and congressional leaders.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  12:35 PM ET, 04/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:38 AM ET, 04/14/2011

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker testifies before House Oversight Committee on state, local debt

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), known for a measure to curtail public workers’ bargaining rights, testified today at a House committee hearing on state and municipal debt.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  11:38 AM ET, 04/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:25 AM ET, 04/14/2011

House Democrats re-introduce bill to provide same-sex couples with equal immigration rights

A group of House Democrats will re-introduce a bill that would provide same-sex couples with the same immigration rights as married heterosexual couples.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  11:25 AM ET, 04/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:44 PM ET, 04/13/2011

House passes repeal of health care law provision; Obama issues veto threat

The House on Wednesday approved a measure that would repeal the national health care law’s Prevention and Public Health Fund, an account that provides $15 billion over the next decade to state- and community-based preventive health care services.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:44 PM ET, 04/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 PM ET, 04/13/2011

Obama’s budget speech: Reactions from Congress

Members of Congress reacted on Wednesday to President Obama’s George Washington University address on debt reduction.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  04:00 PM ET, 04/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:13 PM ET, 04/13/2011

After White House meeting, Boehner says Obama open to alternatives to ‘clean’ debt-limit vote

The top House Republican says that Obama is open to considering proposals that would not contain a “clean” vote on the debt limit.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:13 PM ET, 04/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:42 PM ET, 04/13/2011

Sen. Lindsey Graham blocks judicial nominations over $40,000 in port funding

A top Senate Republican has pledged to block action on several pending judicial nominations until $40,000 in funding for a Charleston port project is approved.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  12:42 PM ET, 04/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:55 AM ET, 04/13/2011

House Republicans on Obama’s budget speech: Sequel is never better than the original

House Republican leaders on Wednesday morning pre-butted President Obama’s budget speech, calling the address an attempted “do-over” from his 2012 budget plan.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  11:55 AM ET, 04/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 04/13/2011

Former top House ethics committee lawyer joins immigration law firm

The former top lawyer for the House Committee on Ethics and the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration has joined the immigration law firm Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  06:00 AM ET, 04/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:02 PM ET, 04/12/2011

On anniversary of Massachusetts law, Haley Barbour talks health care

The Mississippi governor addressed the Congressional Health Care Caucus, a group of House Republicans, on the anniversary of the Massachusetts law.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  09:02 PM ET, 04/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:25 PM ET, 04/12/2011

Fiancee of slain Giffords staffer speaks out emotionally on gun control

Kelly O’Brien was in Washington Tuesday morning to speak out publicly against high-capacity magazines like the one used in January’s shooting spree in Tucson.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:25 PM ET, 04/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:10 PM ET, 04/12/2011

Obama to preview speech on national debt with congressional leaders

President Obama will huddle with congressional leaders Wednesday morning to preview his afternoon speech on tackling the country’s debt problem.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  04:10 PM ET, 04/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:41 PM ET, 04/12/2011

Will the 2011 budget deal cost jobs?

Now that further details have emerged on the final 2011 budget agreement hammered out by President Obama and congressional leaders late last week, where do things stand on each party’s job-creation argument?

By Felicia Sonmez  |  03:41 PM ET, 04/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:21 PM ET, 04/12/2011

Hoyer: Vote against debt limit was a mistake

2chambers | House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer said Tuesday that his previous votes against raising the country’s debt limit were “a mistake.”

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:21 PM ET, 04/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:09 PM ET, 04/12/2011

Fiancee of slain Giffords staffer to endorse high-capacity magazine ban

The fiancee of Gabe Zimmerman, the Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) staffer who was slain in the shooting rampage in Tucson, will endorse legislation that would ban high-capacity magazines.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:09 PM ET, 04/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:12 PM ET, 04/11/2011

12 AIDS activists arrested inside Eric Cantor’s Capitol office

The Capitol Police arrested 12 activists inside the House majority leader’s office and charged them with unlawful conduct.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  06:12 PM ET, 04/11/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:33 PM ET, 04/11/2011

Rand Paul to vote against spending-cut plan

Sen. Rand Paul on Monday wrote colleagues Monday to say he would vote against 2011 budget deal.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:33 PM ET, 04/11/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:20 PM ET, 04/11/2011

Senate Democrat, faith leaders criticize Republican budget in moral terms

Alaska Democratic Sen. Mark Begich and several religious leaders gathered on the steps of a Capitol Hill church Monday afternoon to decry – in moral terms – House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) proposed fiscal year 2012 budget, which will be voted on by the House at the end of this week

By Felicia Sonmez  |  04:20 PM ET, 04/11/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:15 PM ET, 04/11/2011

Poll: More Democrats than Republicans approve of spending-cut deal

A CNN/Opinion Research poll released Monday shows that a majority of Americans approve of the spending compromise agreed to late last Friday.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  02:15 PM ET, 04/11/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:06 PM ET, 04/11/2011

House sets more health-care repeal votes

The battles over the fiscal 2011 and 2012 budgets are the center of attention this week on the Hill, but the House is also poised to consider a measure that would repeal another portion of the national health-care law

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:06 PM ET, 04/11/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:05 AM ET, 04/11/2011

The week ahead on the Hill: Two budgets on the floor and dueling messages on the deficit

2chambers | This week will see the legislative efforts on both 2011 and 2012 budget measures come to a head.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  09:05 AM ET, 04/11/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:41 AM ET, 04/09/2011

Government shutdown averted: An interview with Rep. Rob Andrews

We spoke with Rep. Rob Andrews (D-N.J.) in the Speaker’s Lobby.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  11:41 AM ET, 04/09/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:21 AM ET, 04/09/2011

House passes one-week funding bill, averting government shutdown for eighth (and final) time this fiscal year

The House early Saturday morning passed a measure to fund the federal government for one week while cutting nearly $2 billion in spending.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  02:21 AM ET, 04/09/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:22 AM ET, 04/09/2011

Government shutdown averted: An interview with Rep. Greg Walden

The Oregon Republican credits House Speaker John Boehner for succeeding in a tough negotiation on the budget

By Felicia Sonmez  |  12:22 AM ET, 04/09/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:32 PM ET, 04/08/2011

Nancy Pelosi in Boston ahead of government shutdown deadline

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was in Boston on Friday to attend the groundbreaking of the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  09:32 PM ET, 04/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:20 PM ET, 04/08/2011

More than three-dozen members of Congress have signed onto ‘No Budget, No Pay’ pledge

A bipartisan group of 38 members of Congress had signed onto Sen. Joe Manchin’s (D-W.Va.) “No Budget, No Pay” pledge as of Friday afternoon.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  06:20 PM ET, 04/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:28 PM ET, 04/08/2011

Nine hours on the Hill, Nine press conferences as shutdown nears

2chambers | Every hour on the hour since 10 a.m., Congress members of both parties have gone out in front of the lights and microphones.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  03:28 PM ET, 04/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:00 PM ET, 04/08/2011

House GOPer: Boehner hopeful deal may be reached in ‘a couple of hours’

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) told members of the House GOP conference in a closed-door meeting that he hopes a final budget deal can be reached by Friday evening.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  03:00 PM ET, 04/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:48 AM ET, 04/08/2011

Boehner will not take salary during shutdown

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) became the latest member of Congress to announce that he will not accept his congressional salary during a federal shutdown.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  11:48 AM ET, 04/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:40 AM ET, 04/08/2011

John Boehner’s full remarks Friday morning on budget talks

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) took to the Speaker’s Balcony shortly before 11 a.m. Friday morning to deliver remarks on the ongoing budget talks.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  11:40 AM ET, 04/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:28 AM ET, 04/08/2011

In the back room: Who’s negotiating the budget deal

A look at some top unseen negotiators in the White House/Congress budget talks.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  10:28 AM ET, 04/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:32 AM ET, 04/08/2011

House Republicans meeting at noon as shutdown deadline approaches

As congressional leaders and the White House continue scrambling to work out a budget deal, a key moment could come on when House Republicans will hold a closed-door conference meeting in the Capitol.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  09:32 AM ET, 04/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:19 PM ET, 04/07/2011

Members who live — and shower — in Capitol would be left high and dry by shutdown

For the nearly two dozen House members who not only work, but live, in the Capitol, things could get dirty if Congress and the White House aren’t able to hammer out a budget deal by midnight Friday

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:19 PM ET, 04/07/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:24 PM ET, 04/07/2011

House passes one-week government funding bill; White House issues veto threat

The House on Thursday passed a measure that would keep federal agencies funded for one week – and the Defense Department funded through the end of the fiscal year.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  03:24 PM ET, 04/07/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:10 PM ET, 04/07/2011

Conservative Republicans, liberal Democrats release alternative budget proposals

Two groups on opposite sides of the ideological spectrum on Thursday released their proposals for the fiscal year 2012 budget in response to the Rep. Paul Ryan’s plan.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  03:10 PM ET, 04/07/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 08:10 AM ET, 04/07/2011

Manchin makes ‘No Budget, No Pay Pledge’ promising to give back salary during shutdown

West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin (D) has written a letter stating that he will give back his congressional salary in the case of a federal government shutdown.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  08:10 AM ET, 04/07/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 07:25 PM ET, 04/06/2011

Poll: Slim majority of Republicans favors shutdown over compromise

As congressional leaders gear up for a second White House meeting in as many days in an effort to reach an eleventh-hour budget deal, a Gallup poll released Wednesday night shows that most Americans favor a compromise, although a slim majority of Republicans would prefer to see leaders hold out for their desired budget even if it means a shutdown.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  07:25 PM ET, 04/06/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:43 PM ET, 04/06/2011

Senate rejects bill that would limit EPA’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions

The Senate on Wednesday evening rejected a Republican measure that would limit the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:43 PM ET, 04/06/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:07 PM ET, 04/06/2011

Planned Parenthood, NARAL to hold Capitol rally Thursday as budget deadline looms

Planned Parenthood, NARAL Pro-Choice America and 20 other organizations are planning to hold a Capitol rally Thursday as negotiations between the White House and congressional leaders on how to keep the federal government funded appear to be making little progress

By Felicia Sonmez  |  03:07 PM ET, 04/06/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:24 PM ET, 04/06/2011

House Republicans call on Harry Reid to pass a spending measure or step down as majority leader

A group of 92 House Republicans is calling on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) to step down from his leadership role if the Senate does not pass a measure funding the federal government for the rest of the fiscal year.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  12:24 PM ET, 04/06/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 07:41 PM ET, 04/05/2011

Senate Democrats push for no pay during shutdown

A group of 21 Senate Democrats is urging House Republican leadership to move forward on a measure that would bar lawmakers and the president from getting paid in the event of a government shutdown.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  07:41 PM ET, 04/05/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:30 PM ET, 04/05/2011

House Democrats, liberals and conservatives to offer counter-proposals to Paul Ryan budget plan

The House next week is likely to consider a number of alternate budget proposals for the 2012 fiscal year in addition to the plan that Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) unveiled Tuesday, including a House Democratic leadership proposal, a Congressional Progressive Caucus proposal and a plan put forth by the conservative Republican Study Committee.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  06:30 PM ET, 04/05/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:08 PM ET, 04/05/2011

Senate shelves Rand Paul’s Libya resolution

On a 90-to-10 vote, the Senate on Tuesday voted to shelve a resolution proposed by Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on the U.S. involvement in Libya, four days after Paul and a fellow freshman, Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah), threatened to hold up Senate action until Paul’s measure was brought to the floor.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  04:08 PM ET, 04/05/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:30 PM ET, 04/05/2011

Boehner hasn’t asked Republican freshmen about compromise spending plan

As the possibility of a government shutdown comes closer, House Speaker John A. Boehner has not yet asked House GOP freshmen if they would accept the compromise Democrats say is on the table.

By David A. Fahrenthold and Philip Rucker  |  02:30 PM ET, 04/05/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:53 PM ET, 04/05/2011

Hoyer: Democrats will oppose one-week stopgap

The number two House Democrat said Tuesday that members of his party will oppose a stopgap measure unveiled by House Republicans Monday night that would keep the government funded through April 15 — and the Defense Department through late September — while cutting $12 billion from across federal agencies

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:53 PM ET, 04/05/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:19 PM ET, 04/05/2011

Senate votes to repeal health-care law’s 1099 tax-reporting provision, sending bill to Obama

Senate vote on Tuesday ends nearly a year’s worth of efforts to do away with the 1099 tax-reporting provision, one of its most unpopular requirements.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:19 PM ET, 04/05/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:47 AM ET, 04/05/2011

House Administration Committee distributes shutdown guidance to members

With prospects for a budget deal between congressional leaders and the White House still unclear, the Committee on House Administration on Tuesday morning issued a letter to members on what will happen in the case of a government shutdown.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  09:47 AM ET, 04/05/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 04/05/2011

House Republicans propose seventh stopgap funding proposal

With four days remaining until a potential government shutdown, House Republicans late Monday night released the text of their latest government-funding proposal.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  06:00 AM ET, 04/05/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 08:33 PM ET, 04/04/2011

House, Senate leaders trade barbs over budget with shutdown deadline days away

For the second time in two weeks, congressional leaders engaged Monday in a battle via press release over ongoing federal budget negotiations as a government shutdown deadline loomed.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  08:33 PM ET, 04/04/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:56 PM ET, 04/04/2011

House votes unanimously to cut Pentagon’s printing budget by 10 percent

The measure was the latest of House Republicans’ “YouCut” proposals, which are selected by users online among several different options for cutting spending.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  06:56 PM ET, 04/04/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:07 PM ET, 04/04/2011

Obama to hold budget talks with congressional leaders Tuesday, three days out from shutdown

The discussion comes three days out from the deadline by which Congress must hammer out a budget deal for the rest of the fiscal year.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:07 PM ET, 04/04/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:27 PM ET, 04/04/2011

Senate to hold final vote Tuesday on repealing health care law’s unpopular 1099 provision

Both the Senate and the House have already voted this year to repeal one of the most unpopular provisions of the national health care law. But this week, if things go according to plan, the Senate will hold a second (and final) vote on the issue, sending President Obama the first measure officially repealing part of his signature health care legislation.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  12:27 PM ET, 04/04/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 08:08 AM ET, 04/04/2011

The week ahead on the Hill: Curtain up on one budget, curtain down on another?

Our detailed look at the week ahead on the Hill.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  08:08 AM ET, 04/04/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:36 PM ET, 04/02/2011

Obama calls Boehner, Reid to talk spending cuts as shutdown deadline nears

The calls to the House speaker and Senate majority leader show the president is stepping up his involvement in budget negotiations.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:36 PM ET, 04/02/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:37 PM ET, 04/01/2011

Sens. Rand Paul, Mike Lee vow to block small business bill until they get Libya vote

Two freshman Republicans said they will oppose any further votes on a Senate small business bill until a Libya resolution is brought to the floor.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:37 PM ET, 04/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:25 PM ET, 04/01/2011

House passes symbolic government funding measure criticized by Democrats

The House on Friday passed a symbolic measure aimed at pressuring the Senate to approve a government-funding bill before the law currently keeping the government running expires.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:25 PM ET, 04/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:12 PM ET, 04/01/2011

White House liaison: Democratic no-pay bill is unconstitutional

A Democratic measure that would have docked the pay of members of Congress and the president during a government shutdown was killed by the House.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:12 PM ET, 04/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:14 PM ET, 04/01/2011

In surprise for Democrats, procedural move on no-pay bill backfires

House Democrats on Friday launched what appeared to be a clever procedural move against a Republican-sponsored bill on funding the federal government. But it backfired.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  03:14 PM ET, 04/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:09 PM ET, 04/01/2011

Boehner: Government shutdown would end up costing more money

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:09 PM ET, 04/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:00 PM ET, 04/01/2011

House Republican freshmen rally outside the Senate – while Senate is in recess

About a dozen House Republican freshmen on Friday kept to their pledge to rally on the Senate steps every day until it passes a government-funding resolution. But the Senate was in recess.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:00 PM ET, 04/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 07:09 PM ET, 03/31/2011

Newt Gingrich: I’m ‘deeply opposed’ to NIH funding cuts

By Felicia Sonmez  |  07:09 PM ET, 03/31/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:20 PM ET, 03/31/2011

Is the ‘Government Shutdown Prevention Act’ constitutional?

House Republican leaders’ announcement that they plan to vote Friday on the “Government Shutdown Prevention Act” was greeted by an uproar over whether it’s constitutional.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  05:20 PM ET, 03/31/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:42 PM ET, 03/31/2011

Rubio defends plan for ousting Gaddafi

A spokesman for Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla) defended the senator’s call for a Senate resolution authorizing the ouster of Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  04:42 PM ET, 03/31/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:07 PM ET, 03/31/2011

Boehner: No spending deal has been reached

House Speaker John A. Boehner pushed back on Vice President Biden’s assertion Wednesday night that there’s a tentative agreement on a figure for spending cuts.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  02:07 PM ET, 03/31/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:27 PM ET, 03/31/2011

Lawmakers laugh it up at Congressional Correspondents’ Awards

User poll | Lawmakers delivered the jokes at last night’s Congressional Correspondents’ Awards Dinner.

By Emi Kolawole  |  01:27 PM ET, 03/31/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:12 PM ET, 03/31/2011

McCaskill sends letter to Army Secretary on Arlington Cemetery problems

Missouri Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill has written a letter to Army Secretary John McHugh regarding the ongoing problems at Arlington National Cemetery.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  01:12 PM ET, 03/31/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:00 AM ET, 03/31/2011

Two Republican freshmen, two contrasting Libya resolutions

Two conservative freshmen Republican senators, Rand Paul and Marco Rubio, are sponsoring two contrasting amendments regarding the conflict in Libya – underscoring continuing disagreement among lawmakers on the issue.

By Felicia Sonmez  |  10:00 AM ET, 03/31/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

 

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