The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

Nation & World

October 12, 2013

Obama says no good reason to continue shutdown

WASHINGTON — With talks having stalled between the White House and House Republicans, a bipartisan group in the Senate is polishing a measure that would reopen the government and prevent a first-ever default on the country's bills.

The negotiations in the Senate come as the chamber meets in a rare Saturday session to vote on a Democratic measure to lift the government's borrowing cap through the end of next year. Republicans are poised to reject it amid talks among the group of rank-and-file senators — talks monitored with the full attention of Senate leaders.

The group's focus is on a proposal by Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and others that would pair a six-month plan to keep the government open with an increase in the government's borrowing limit through January.

House Republicans, meanwhile, are slated to meet Saturday morning to get an update from their leaders as matters come to a head.

President Barack Obama on Friday privately turned away a House plan to link the reopening of the government — and a companion measure to temporarily increase the government's borrowing cap — to concessions on the budget.

Publicly, top House Republicans said negotiations were on track. Obama called House Speaker John Boehner at midafternoon Friday, and Michael Steel, a spokesman for the leader of House Republicans, said, "They agreed that we should all keep talking."

Privately, the channel between the White House and the House wasn't bearing fruit, said aides on both sides. The aides required anonymity because the talks were private and they weren't authorized to discuss them by name.

"It wouldn't be wise, as some suggest, to just kick the debt-ceiling can down the road for a couple months, and flirt with a first-ever intentional default right in the middle of the holiday shopping season," Obama said in his Saturday radio and Internet address.

On Friday, a daily briefing by White House press secretary Jay Carney was delayed until after the stock market closed, and Carney said Obama "appreciates the constructive nature of the conversation and the proposal that House Republicans put forward." Yet, the spokesman said, "He has some concerns with it."

A House GOP aide and a White House official cast developments in a more pessimistic light, both requiring anonymity because of the secret nature of the talks. Among the options to be presented to a House GOP conference was a condition-free debt limit increase for just a few weeks and a continued closure of the government in hopes of concessions from Obama.

In the face of disastrous opinion polls, GOP leaders have signaled that they will make sure the debt limit is increased with minimal damage to the markets. But they're still seeking concessions as a condition for reopening the government.

Obama met Senate Republicans on Friday and heard a pitch from Collins on raising the debt limit until the end of January, reopening the government, and cutting the health care law at its periphery. It would also strengthen income verification for people receiving subsidies through the health care law and set up a broader set of budget talks.

The Collins plan would delay for two years a medical-device tax that helps finance the health care law, and it would subject millions of individuals eligible for subsidies to purchase health insurance under the program to stronger income verification.

At the Capitol, Collins said Obama said the proposal "was constructive, but I don't want to give the impression that he endorsed it."

1
Text Only
Nation & World
  • First lady announces one-stop job site for vets

    To help veterans leaving the military as it downsizes, the government on Wednesday started a one-stop job-shopping website for them to create resumes, connect with employers and become part of a database for companies to mine.

    April 23, 2014

  • US weighs clemency for inmates jailed for 10 years

    The Obama administration is encouraging many nonviolent federal prisoners to apply for early release — and expecting thousands to take up the offer. It's an effort to deal with high costs and overcrowding in prisons, and also a matter of fairness, the government says.

    April 23, 2014

  • Missouri executes inmate for 1993 farm slaying

    Missouri executed an inmate early Wednesday only a few miles from the farm where prosecutors say he orchestrated the 1993 killing of a couple whose cows he wanted to steal.

    April 23, 2014

  • Pro-Russian insurgents hold US journalist captive

    Pro-Russian gunmen in eastern Ukraine admitted on Wednesday that they are holding an American journalist, saying he was suspected of unspecified "bad activities."

    April 23, 2014

  • Beautiful Bulldogs.jpg Lucey is tops in Iowa's 'Beautiful Bulldog' event

    Lucey is a slobbering 18-month-old pooch whose human family dreams of making her a therapy dog.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sherpas leave Everest; some expeditions nix climbs

    Sherpa guides packed up their tents and left Mount Everest's base camp Wednesday in an unprecedented walkout to honor 16 of their colleagues who were killed last week in the deadliest avalanche ever recorded on the mountain, climbers said.

    April 23, 2014

  • FBI investigates suspected serial child molester

    The FBI asked for the public's help Tuesday to identify at least 90 potential victims of a suspected child predator who worked at 10 American and other international schools abroad for more than four decades before committing suicide last month in Minnesota.

    April 22, 2014

  • Australia signals deeper search for Malaysian jet

    Australia may use more powerful sonar equipment that can delve deeper beneath the Indian Ocean in the hunt for the missing Malaysia Airlines jet as the prime minister said Wednesday that failure to find any clue in the most likely crash site would not spell the end of the search.

    April 22, 2014

  • Tech boom presents new wrinkles for Wrigley Field

    During a recent game at Wrigley Field, John Weber was using a pencil and scorecard to expertly track the game between his hometown Cubs and the Pittsburgh Pirates. The 86-year-old retired transit worker figures he is an increasingly rare kind of baseball fan.

    April 22, 2014

  • Comcast 1Q earns surge on upbeat NBC results

    Comcast Corp. said Tuesday that its first-quarter net income rose by 30 percent as ad revenue surged at broadcast network NBC, helped by the Winter Olympics in Sochi and Jimmy Fallon's elevation as host of "The Tonight Show."

    April 22, 2014

More Resources from The Herald Bulletin
AP Video
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Helium debate
Helium