In 11th day of shutdown, Congress rushes to end fiscal deadlock

government shutdown, Congress, debt
House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), left, and Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) attend a news conference with Republican House members in Washington on Oct. 10. Credit: Reuters

President Barack Obama will press his case for a quick reopening of the entire federal government coupled with an emergency increase of U.S. borrowing authority when he meets with Senate Republicans on Friday.

With a partial government shutdown in its 11th day and less than a week to go before the Treasury Department runs out of money to pay the government’s bills, the Democratic president has been urging congressional Republicans to end a fiscal impasse that has overtaken Washington and rippled through the country.

Vice President Joe Biden will join Obama in pressing for fast action, which could come by week’s end if a series of new efforts by Republicans in the House of Representatives and Senate bear fruit.

Late on Thursday, House of Representatives Republicans were looking at possible changes to a vague plan they floated that would give Obama a short-term debt limit increase — possibly lasting about six weeks — and reopen the government.

But many details had to be worked out, including what Republicans would get in return. House Speaker John Boehner said he and his fellow Republicans want solid commitments from Obama and his congressional Democrats on some longer-term deficit-reduction steps.

The Oct. 17 deadline for raising the U.S. debt ceiling or risking an historic default was daunting because any deal that is struck by leaders could face a revolt from conservatives in both the House and Senate.

That is particularly problematic in the Senate, where procedural delays can slow legislation for up to a week — about the time remaining before borrowing authority runs out, according to Treasury Secretary Jack Lew.

But public opinion polls showing Republicans were being blamed for forcing a government shutdown at the Oct. 1 start of the new fiscal year fueled a desire by many in the party to cut their losses.

Late on Thursday some senior House Republicans were optimistic. Representative Pete Sessions, who chairs the House Rules Committee that is a gatekeeper for all legislation headed for debate in the full chamber, said a deal could be struck as early as Friday.

If he is correct, that could queue up votes in the full House by this weekend.

Meanwhile, Senate Republicans were discussing a series of different ideas, including a fast reopening of the government coupled with a debt limit increase and the repeal of an unpopular medical device tax that would raise revenues to help pay for Obamacare healthcare subsidies. Under that plan, the revenues would instead be raised through some pension reforms.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Local

Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.

MLB

Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.

NBA

Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.