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Oct 01, 2013
Government Shutdown Standoff: What Happens Next?By Jeff Zeleny, ABC News
With government departments and agencies officially in shutdown mode this morning, the warring parties on Capitol Hill appear just as entrenched as they did when the standoff started.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has called the Senate back into session at 9:30 a.m., but the Democrats signaled no changes to their strategy of holding firm against any changes to President Obama’s signature health care law.Read more
In Shutdown Blame Game, Democrats and Republicans United: It’s the Other Side’s FaultBy Matea Gold, Philip Rucker and Ed O’Keefe, Washington Post
Even before much of the federal government shut down at midnight Monday, the players were already staking out their positions in the battle to come: the fight over who was at fault.Read more
Obama Confident, but Wary of Economic FalloutBy Jackie Calmes, The New York Times
President Obama expressed confidence on Monday that he was right to defy House Republicans’ demands as the hours ticked away toward a government shutdown. Yet offsetting the bravado at the White House was fear of what October’s unfolding events could mean for the economy.Read more
Shutdown Stalemate Shows Larger GOP Dilemma: How to Be a Governing PartyBy Dan Balz, The Washington Post
Amid all the maneuvering and hand-wringing ahead of the government shutdown, one thing remained clear: House Republicans are continuing to grapple unsuccessfully with what it means to be a governing party.
Whatever happens with the crisis in the coming days will not resolve a contradiction that has bedeviled Republicans in the two decades since they swept to power in the House after 40 years in the minority. The GOP won the majority in 1994 and was returned to power in 2010 on a wave of antigovernment sentiment. In the majority, Republicans have often been stymied by the need to produce compromises while satisfying that part of their base that considers compromise as selling out principles.Read more
The Battle Cry of the GOPBy John Dickerson, Slate Magazine
f the government shuts down, it may be because House Republicans were contemplating the next fight over the debt limit more than the current one over keeping the government running. (Update, Oct. 1: The government has shut down.) Though closing the federal government will affect the economy, a breach of the debt limit could cause economic collapse. Within the GOP, there are two major strains of thought: those who would like to fight now over funding the government and those who would like to fight later over a debt limit increase when the Treasury Department hits its borrowing limit Oct. 17. Each camp’s view is shaped by how seriously its individual members take the warnings of debt limit cataclysm, and how he or she interprets the president’s declaration that he will not negotiate on any matters tied to increasing the debt limit.Read more
Sep 30, 2013
Government Heads Toward ShutdownBy Janet Hook and Kristina Peterson, Wall Street Journal
The nation braced for a partial shutdown of the federal government, as time for Congress to pass a budget before a Monday midnight deadline grew perilously short and lawmakers gave no signs Sunday they were moving toward a resolution.
Leaders of both parties said they wanted to avoid the first federal closure since 1996, but their public appearances seemed aimed more at affixing blame for the impasse.Read more
Politics Strategic Command No. 2 Suspension Linked to Probe of Counterfeit Poker ChipsWith Martha Raddatz, ABC News Watch more
Al-Shabab Shifts Focus From Territory To TerrorismBy Tom Gjelten, NPR
Al-Shabab has been around for years as a militia group fighting for territory in Somalia.
When al-Shabab militants, dressed in casual clothes, turned up in a ritzy shopping mall in Nairobi, Kenya, last weekend and gunned down men, women and children, the group shifted from an insurgent movement to a terrorist organization.Read more
In Historic Call, Obama and Iranian Leader TalkBy Alexis Simendinger, Real Clear Politics
President Obama and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani agreed during a historic telephone conversation Friday to move “with a sense of urgency,” and with allies, to reach a negotiated agreement on Iran’s nuclear program.Read more
Sep 27, 2013
Why Do We Even Have a Debt Ceiling?With Karen Tumulty, Washington Post Watch more
Cruz, Corker Clash on Senate FloorBy Ed O'Keefe, The Washington Post
The months-long divide in ideology and tactics splintering Senate Republicans was laid bare on the Senate floor Thursday in an incredibly rare, heated exchange between three senators.Read more
Senate to Advance Stopgap BillBy John Dickerson, Slate Magazine
The Senate is on track to approve Friday a stopgap spending bill that sets Congress up for a weekend of partisan jockeying to resolve a shutdown threat before Monday's deadline.Read more
The Medium Is (Most of) the MessageBy John Dickerson, Slate Magazine
On Oct. 1 Americans will begin to sign up for health care plans as part of the Affordable Care Act. Despite all the efforts to sell Obamacare, a majority of Americans are still fearing the day. According to the latest CBS News/New York Times poll, 51 percent of Americans disapprove of the health care law and only 39 percent approve of it. Seventy-nine percent believe implementation will either not affect them or leave them worse off. On the eve of this long-fought-over moment—the day Obamacare takes affect—President Obama’s best sales tool may come down to a website: healthcare.gov.Read more
Positive Spin on Iran Nuclear Talks Faces Test Next MonthBy Indira A.R. Lakshmanan & Kambiz Foroohar, Bloomberg News
Foreign ministers from the U.S. and five other powers met with Iran’s top diplomat to see whether the Islamic Republic’s new administration is serious about resolving disputes over its nuclear program.Read more
NSA Chief Deflects Tracking QuestionsBy Kimberly Dozier, Associated Press
The nation’s top intelligence official sidestepped questions Thursday from a senator about whether the National Security Agency has ever used Americans’ cellphone signals to collect information on their whereabouts that would allow tracking of the movements of individual callers.Read more
Sep 26, 2013
House Republicans Explore Strategy to Avoid Federal Government ShutdownBy Lori Montgomery and Juliet Eilperin, Washington Post
With federal agencies set to close their doors in five days, House Republicans began exploring a potential detour on the path to a shutdown: shifting the fight over President Obama’s health-care law to a separate bill that would raise the nation's debt limit.
If it works, the strategy could clear the way for the House to approve a simple measure to keep the government open into the new fiscal year, which will begin Tuesday, without hotly contested provisions to defund the Affordable Care Act.Read more
What the Ted Cruz Spectacle is All About
This isn't the idealism of "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington."
It isn't as dark as "House of Cards," either.
So how about settling on something lighter, like say, "Animal House," in which the dean famously says, "The time has come for someone to put his foot down. And that foot is me."Read more
How Eight Lives Would Be Affected By the Health LawBy Sarah Kliff, Sandhya Somashekhar, Lena H. Sun and Karen Tumulty, Washington Post
When President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act in 2010, he declared that "health-care reform is no longer an unmet promise. It is the law of the land." Now, we get to see whether it works. Starting Oct. 1, millions of Americans who lack medical insurance or buy their own coverage will have their first chance to sign up for health insurance under Obamacare.Read more
Justice Department Pushes New Thinking On Kids And CrimeBy Carrie Johnson, NPR
For a man who spent the bulk of his career as a public defender, Robert Listenbee's new role walking around the halls of the U.S. Justice Department may not be the most comfortable fit.
But Listenbee, who became earlier this year, says his transition has been smooth. And besides, he says, he couldn't resist the "extraordinary opportunity."Read more
Another Clinton presidential campaign?By Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times
So, will Hillary Rodham Clinton run for president?
In an interview with New York Magazine published this week, the former secretary of State acknowledged that she's wrestling with the idea but still needs time "to weigh what the factors are" before "making a decision one way or the other."Read more