July 2011

Jul 05, 2011

On the Radar: July 5, 2011

Anti-tax Diehard Looms Large In Spending Showdown
By Chuck Babington, Associated Press
Without a bipartisan agreement this summer to reduce the federal deficit and raise the debt limit, the economy could suffer a horrendous blow, leaders of both parties say. If that happens, some will point fingers at a bearded, slightly disheveled man who's barely known outside political circles in Washington. Read more

Congress Using "mini-deal" To Delay Debt Ceiling Compromise
By John Dickerson, CBS News
Scott Pelly spoke with congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes and analyst John Dickerson on the congressional negotiations to prevent the country from going into default on its debts. View

Debt-Limit Delay In The Real World
By Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times
Some Republicans in Congress argue that refusing to raise the debt ceiling wouldn't have catastrophic consequences. We're heading toward a real-world lesson in how wrong they are. Read more

On Main Street, Cheers For Bachmann
By Jeff Zeleny, The New York Times
Michele Bachmann was already zipping along Main Street at a fast clip, shaking hands, waving and blowing kisses into the air. When she noticed that her entourage had clogged up the parade route on Monday, she began running — in a skirt and heels — and outpaced everyone nearby. Read more

One Republican Race, Two Starting Points
By Nia-Malika Henderson and Rosalind S. Helderman, The Washington Post
The GOP presidential hopefuls who hit the campaign trail on the Fourth of July spent their time doing much the same thing — over and over again. They walked and waved their way through parades, shook hundreds of hands, and dropped by back-yard cookouts, capitalizing on the day’s patriotic fervor to try to make inroads in key early states. Read more

Running On Empty
By Jim Scuitto, ABC News
ABC's Jim Sciutto reports on the economic challenges of American towns like Pont. View

More U.S. Troop Deaths Raise Questions About Strategy
By Nancy Yousseff, McClatchy
June was the deadliest month in nearly a year for U.S. service members in Afghanistan and Iraq even as the United States said that improved security in both countries allows it to reduce troops in those war zones. Read more



Jul 11, 2011

On the Radar: July 11, 2011

Debt Deal Debate
By Eamon Javers, CNBC
CNBC's Eamon Javers has the story on Congressional leaders failing to make a deal as the August 2nd deadline looms. View

Before More Debt Talks, Obama To Make His Case To The Public
By Christi Parsons, Los Angeles Times
President Obama takes his case for a sweeping deficit-reduction deal to the public this morning, holding a morning news conference in advance of a meeting with Republicans to try to break the logjam over raising the federal debt limit. Read more

Debt Reduction Talks In Limbo As Clock Ticks Toward Aug. 2 Deadline
By Lori Montgomery and Scott Wilson, The Washington Post
Talks among President Obama and congressional leaders Sunday evening failed to break a partisan stalemate over how to raise the federal borrowing limit, leaving the politically charged negotiations in limbo three weeks before the administration says the country will begin to default. Read more

Deficit Negotiators Hit Reset
By Carol E. Lee, John D. Mckinnon, and Naftali Bendavid, The Wall Street Journal
President Barack Obama and Republican leaders in Congress clashed Sunday over the scope of an effort to cut the federal deficit, one that could be shorn of its most ambitious elements, including revamping the tax code and significantly reducing growth in benefit programs. Read more

Robert Reich Tweets A Six-Point Jobs Plan
By David Wessel, The Wall Street Journal
Robert Reich, the Berkeley professor who was Labor Secretary in the Clinton administration, responded to today’s bad news on jobs with a flurry of tweets from his @RBReich twitter handle, calling on Washington to drop its fixation on deficits and turn to jobs. Read more

Politics Very Much In Play In Debt-Reduction Talks
By Mary Louise Kelly and Cokie Roberts, NPR
Congressional leaders will be at the White House Monday to continue talks on raising the debt ceiling. Putting the politics aside, what are the prospects for success here? Listen

Boehner’s Decision Means An Opportunity Lost
By Dan Balz, The Washington Post
House Speaker John Boehner’s surprise announcement late Saturday that he was abandoning efforts to reach a comprehensive budget agreement brings a sudden end to what may have been the best opportunity in years to deal with the country’s looming fiscal crisis. Read more

Boehner's Backpedal On Debt Ceiling Moves D.C. Closer To The Brink
By Major Garrett, National Journal
It was not the Saturday Night Massacre because nobody got fired.
But the Saturday collapse of what looked like a promising bipartisan effort to craft the biggest deficit-cutting deal in American history reduces the already scant hopes for a recovery robust enough to produce the level of job creation needed to rescue the American economy. And that means a lot of people without jobs, fired or not. Read more

A Measured U.S. Response In Syria
By Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times
The Obama administration has resisted calls for it to push strongly for Bashar Assad's ouster. Instead, it is essentially trying to help arrange a slow unraveling of the Syrian regime rather than an abrupt collapse. Read more

Envoy Meets With Leader Of Yemen On Accord
By David Sanger, The New York Times
President Obama sent his counterterrorism chief to Saudi Arabia over the weekend to meet with Yemen’s badly injured president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, with the envoy telling him that the only way to get American aid flowing again was to sign an accord that would effectively remove Mr. Saleh from power. Read more

Jul 12, 2011

On the Radar: July 12, 2011

Guilt Trip
By John Dickerson, Slate
Nothing at the state fair this summer will match the gravity-defying act President Obama is trying with his push for a grand bargain on raising the debt ceiling. He is trying to convince House Republicans to agree to something their supporters will hate with someone they hate—and he's adding to the degree of difficulty by actively antagonizing them. Finally, he's trying to do all this in record time, faster than the usual rules of politics allow. Read more

Obama Grasping Centrist Banner In Debt Impasse
By Jackie Calmes, The New York Times
President Obama made no apparent headway on Monday in his attempt to forge a crisis-averting budget deal, but he put on full display his effort to position himself as a pragmatic centrist willing to confront both parties and address intractable problems. Read more

Culture, Hard Lessons Drive GOP's Anti-Tax Stand
By Chuck Babington, Associated Press
On the surface, it would seem like an opportune time for Congress to include targeted tax hikes as part of a cost-cutting package to reduce the huge federal deficit. Read more

In Debt-Ceiling Talks, Obama Tries To Keep His Balance
By Dan Balz, The Washington Post
With House Speaker John A. Boehner’s decision to back away from a “grand bargain” on the budget, President Obama may be forced to recalibrate his goals and his strategy to show that he can bring the negotiations to a successful conclusion. Read more

President's Focus: $4 Trillion
By Janet Hook, The Wall Street Journal
The White House and congressional leaders made no progress Monday toward reaching a deficit-reduction deal that would clear the way for raising the federal borrowing limit in less than three weeks. Read more

Debt Talks Reflect Tensions Between GOP Leaders
By Naftali Bendavid, The Wall Street Journal
Recent twists in negotiations over the federal debt ceiling have brought new attention to a long-running bit of intrigue among Republican leaders: The presumed rivalry between House Speaker John Boehner and his top deputy, Majority Leader Eric Cantor. Read more

Second Living Medal Of Honor Recipient Of Iraq And Afghanistan Wars To Be Honored
By Yochi J. Dreazen, National Journal
The shooting started without warning, and within seconds two U.S. Army Rangers—some of the military’s most highly trained soldiers—were pinned down inside an insurgent compound in eastern Afghanistan. Read more

Jul 13, 2011

On the Radar: July 13, 2011

Debt Talk Mired, Leader For G.O.P. Proposes Option
By Jackie Calmes, The New York Times
From the White House and Congress to financial centers, pessimism spread on Tuesday about the prospects of a debt-limit deal between President Obama and Republicans, prompting the Senate Republican leader to propose a “last-choice option” that piqued the administration’s interest but angered conservatives in his own party. Read more

Debt Talks: Now It's Getting Ugly
By David Wessel, The Wall Street Journal
WSJ Global Economic Editor David Wessel reports talks to raise the nation's debt ceiling took a downward turn yesterday as the August 2 deadline approaches. AP Photo of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell by Susan Walsh. View

Process Hijacked By GOP No-Tax Purists
By Gloria Borger, CNN
So all the congressional leaders and the president are locked in a room. They all have one goal: raising the debt ceiling. They all agree it's important. They also agree that it's urgent, because by August 2, the United States will have run out of money to pay its bills. Read more

As Talks Stall, New Debt Plan Offered
By Naftali Bendavid, The Wall Street Journal
Negotiations over a deficit-reduction agreement spiraled downward Tuesday as the White House and congressional leaders dug in even as anxiety mounted that they could wait too long to reach a deal to avoid a government default. Read more

McConnell Outlines New Proposal On Debt Ceiling
By Lori Montgomery and Paul Kane, The Washington Post
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell moved Tuesday to head off a potentially disastrous U.S. default by offering President Obama new authority to raise the federal debt limit without cutting government spending. Read more

Karzai Brother's Death Worsens U.S. Troubles In Afghanistan
By Nancy Youssef, McClatchy
In the end, Ahmed Wali Karzai personified America's dearth of good options in Afghanistan. Read more

Slaying of Karzai's Half-Brother Poses Policy Challenges for U.S.
By Yochi Dreazen, National Journal
The U.S. spent years considering the arrest of Ahmad Wali Karzai, the half-brother of Afghanistan’s president and the most powerful – and allegedly corrupt -- man in southern Afghanistan. Karzai’s sudden assassination Tuesday will finally answer the question of whether the troubled American-led war effort is better or worse off without him. Read more

Pawlenty, Bachmann, Romney And The Iowa Marriage pledge
By Dan Balz, The Washington Post
Last week, the Family Leader, a conservative pro-family group in Iowa, asked Republican presidential candidates to sign a pledge endorsing traditional marriage and other social issues. Michele Bachmann was the first to say she would sign it. Mitt Romney has decided not to. Tim Pawlenty hasn’t announced his decision. Read more

White House, In Shift, Turns Against Syria Leader
By David Sanger, The New York Times
The Obama administration, after weeks of urging Syria to carry out democratic reforms and end a brutal crackdown, has now turned decisively against President Bashar al-Assad, saying that he has lost legitimacy and that it has no interest in Mr. Assad keeping his grip on power. Read more

Jul 14, 2011

On the Radar: July 14, 2011

Fast-Changing Political Climate Upends Debate
By David Wessel, The Wall Street Journal
For the past few weeks, old-timers in Washington and savvy bond traders around the world have watched the debt-ceiling debate in the U.S. with bemusement, assuming politicians are doing with the federal debt ceiling what they always do: Argue vociferously until the last moment at which point they do what needs to be done. Read more

One Good Debt Debate Deserves Another
By Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times
Republican leaders blinked this week in their standoff with President Obama over raising the nation's debt ceiling. That means we're unlikely to face a financial crisis next month, when the Treasury said it would run short of money to pay the federal government's bills. But it doesn't mean we've solved any of our fiscal problems. Read more

A New Wrinkle: A Push For Budget Amendment
By Naftali Bendavid, The Wall Street Journal
A growing number of Republicans say Congress must pass a balanced-budget amendment to the Constitution before they will vote to raise the government's borrowing limit, creating a serious new wrinkle in the debt talks. Read more

Top Republicans Clash Over Debt-Limit Plan
By Lori Montgomery and Paul Kane, The Washington Post
Two top Republican leaders clashed Wednesday over a plan that could allow the government to avoid a potentially catastrophic default but would not ensure the deep cuts in federal spending that party members seek. Read more

Take Me To Your Leader
By John Dickerson, Slate
In the spirit of reducing waste, fraud and abuse in Washington, I suggest a drastic cut in the number of words used by any leader in Washington calling on any other leader in Washington to show leadership. Instead of endless vague generalities, they should just say: Give me what I want. Read more

Obama Lawmakers Face Fresh Doubts
By Eamon Javers, CNBC
CNBC's Eamon Javers has the story on President Obama apparently leaving talks abruptly. View

Insiders Split On Who Gets Blamed For Debt Ceiling Strikeout
By Jim Barnes, National Journal
No surprises here--Democratic and Republican Members of Congress are sharply divided on which party will lose the most if an agreement on raising the debt ceiling is not reached by the August 2 deadline, according to this week's National Journal Congressional Insiders Poll. Read more

Obama Flexes Fundraising Muscles
By Alexis Simendinger, RealClearPolitics.com
President Obama's early campaign haul of more than $86 million, including $38 million to be shared with the Democratic National Committee, should send a few chills through the ranks of Republican presidential rivals, whose campaigns combined have barely come close to matching the dollars Obama has raised just for the DNC, at least according to details released by campaigns to date. Read more

Jul 18, 2011

On the Radar: July 18, 2011

Dem Gov: To Win In 2012, GOP Wants To Hurt Economy
By Charles Babington, Associated Press
The head of the Democratic Governors Association accused GOP debt negotiators in Washington of trying to undermine the economy so President Barack Obama will lose his re-election bid next year. Read more

For Governors, A Personal Toll From Budget Battles
By Dan Balz, The Washington Post
In one state capital after another, this has been a year of painful budgetary choices and, in some cases, pitched political battles. That’s the big picture. On an individual level, it also has been a time of reflection, disappointment and lessons learned for the governors who have been in the forefront of those battles. Will Washington learn from the states? Read more

House GOP To Vote On $2.4 Trillion In Cuts
By Naftali Bendavid and Janet Hook, The Wall Street Journal
House Republican leaders said Friday they would hold a vote on a bill tying a $2.4 trillion debt-ceiling increase to broad spending cuts and a balanced-budget Constitutional amendment, a defiant and largely symbolic move at a time when the White House and Congress have been searching for compromise to prevent a U.S. government default. Read more

Senate Debt Plan Promises Months Of Budget Wrangling
By Janet Hook, The Wall Street Journal
With few signs of movement over the weekend on negotiations to raise the federal borrowing limit, Senate leaders are planning this week to unveil a back-up plan that would force more budget wrangling before the end of the year. Read more

Top Lawmakers Target ‘Grand Bargain’ For Debt Plan
By Alec MacGillis and Lori Montgomery, The Washington Post
Even as President Obama and congressional leaders focus on a fallback plan to lift the nation’s debt ceiling, top Democrats and Republicans have begun to map a new way to craft the same sort of ambitious deficit-cutting plan they abandoned last week. Read more

Bank Challenger Picked To Run Consumer Agency
By Deborah Solomon and Maya Jackson Randall, The Wall Street Journal
President Barack Obama said Sunday he would nominate former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray to head the consumer finance watchdog agency created in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. Read more

Dalai Lama And Obama Meet To Talk About Tibet
By Jackie Calmes, The New York Times
President Obama met privately with the Dalai Lama, the exiled spiritual leader of Tibet, at the White House on Saturday, despite a warning from Beijing that the meeting would risk damaging relations between China and the United States. Read more


Jul 19, 2011

On the Radar: July 19, 2011

No Sign Of A Debt Deal
By Eamon Javers, CNBC
The White House says President Obama will veto any plan to "cut, cap and balance" federal budget, with CNBC's Eamon Javers. Rep. Xavier Becerra, (D-CA), and Rep. Jeb Hensarling, (R-TX). View

Debt Deal Search Intensifies
By Naftali Bendavid and Carol E. Lee, The Wall Street Journal
Top White House officials and congressional leaders are racing against the clock to devise a scaled-down deficit-reduction proposal that would get both President Barack Obama's signature and enough Republican votes to pass the House in time to avert a government default. Read more

Rupert Murdoch Appears Before Parliament Panel
By Mary Louise Kelly and Philip Reeves, NPR
Rupert Murdoch, his son and the former head of his newspaper business in the United Kingdom appeared before a Parliamentary committee Tuesday, facing questions about the News of The World phone-hacking scandal. The head of the Metropolitan Police, who is leaving his job because of connections to the scandal, faced another committee. Listen

Road To The White House: Pawlenty's Campaign
By John Harwood, CNBC
CNBC's John Harwood has the story on Tim Pawlenty's campaign for the 2012 election. View

Gensler's Struggles Mark Regulatory Challenges
By Deborah Solomon, The Wall Street Journal
When the Dodd-Frank financial-regulation overhaul became law last July, Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman Gary Gensler raced to implement new rules assigned to the agency. Read more

Jul 20, 2011

On the Radar: July 20, 2011

Bipartisan Plan for Budget Deal Buoys President
By Jackie Calmes and Jennifer Steinhauer, The New York Times
President Obama seized on the re-emergence of an ambitious bipartisan budget plan in the Senate on Tuesday to invigorate his push for a big debt-reduction deal, and he summoned Congressional leaders back to the bargaining table this week to “start talking turkey.” Read more

Obama Backs Latest Bargain
By Janet Hook, Naftali Bendavid and Damian Paletta, The Wall Street Journal
President Barack Obama, in a last-ditch bid for a bipartisan "grand bargain" on the budget, threw his weight Tuesday behind a $3.7 trillion deficit-reduction plan unveiled by six Republican and Democratic senators. Read more

New Debt Plan Gains Support In Senate; House Passes Balanced-Budget Measure
By Lori Montgomery and Rosalind S. Helderman, The Washington Post
President Obama and lawmakers in both parties latched on to a new strategy for reducing the federal debt Tuesday, saying an emerging plan to save $3.7 trillion over the next decade could help break a political impasse over the debt limit and avert a U.S. default. Read more

Big Is The New Black
By John Dickerson, Slate
President Obama has tried to guilt, shame, and cajole House Republicans into a more flexible position on raising the debt limit. Lately his public statements have contained new pieces of evidence aimed to show House Republicans how isolated they are. Read more

WSJ Poll
By John Harwood, CNBC
Results of the latest political poll reveal voters do not expect the economy to improve anytime soon, with CNBC's John Harwood. View

GOP Too Dug In On Debt Talks; Public Fears Default Consequences
By Dan Balz and Jon Cohen, The Washington Post
Majorities of Americans see both President Obama and congressional Republicans as not willing enough to compromise in their budget negotiations, but the public views the GOP leaders as particularly intransigent, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. Read more

Watchdog Says U.S. Aid Money In Afganistan May Be Fueling Insurgency
By Yochi J. Dreazen, National Journal
The United States' inability to control the billions of dollars of American aid flowing into Afghanistan every year is increasing the risk that some of that money is inadvertently fueling the Afghan insurgency, according to a scathing new report by one of the U.S. government's own watchdogs. Read more

Obama To Support Repeal Of Defense Of Marriage Act
By Helene Cooper, The New York Times
President Obama will endorse a bill to repeal a law that limits the legal definition of marriage to a union between a man and a woman, the White House said on Tuesday, taking another step in support of gay rights. Read more

Murdoch Scandal: Father And Son Testify
By Martha Raddatz, ABC News
Rupert Murdoch and son James' testimony will decide media empire's fate. View

Murdoch Scandal: Feds To Investigate Extent Of Hacking, Bribes
By Pierre Thomas, ABC News
The Justice Department is preparing to launch a preliminary investigation into whether News of the World officials engaged in a systemic conspiracy to pay bribes to British police, ABC News has learned. Read more


Jul 21, 2011

On the Radar: July 21, 2011

Push Intensifies For Larger Deal On Debt Impasse
By Jackie Calmes and Carl Hulse, The New York Times
With the clock ticking down, President Obama and Congressional leaders began a final effort to forge a broad deficit-reduction plan even as new cracks appeared among House Republicans over how to proceed. Read more

Obama Open To Debt-Cap Deal
By Janet Hook, Naftali Bendavid and Carol E. Lee, The Wall Street Journal
The White House encouraged congressional leaders to reach a major deficit-reduction deal by offering them a little more time, as they scrambled to find a way to prevent a government default in less than two weeks. Read more

As Debt Talks Intensify, Obama Opens Door To Short-Term Hike In Debt Ceiling
By Paul Kane and Lori Montgomery, The Washington Post
The contentious budget talks that have dominated Washington for months intensified Wednesday, prompting President Obama to say he would accept a short-term hike in the debt ceiling if it gave lawmakers time to finalize a comprehensive deal. Read more

Debt Deal In Making?
By John Harwood, CNBC
There has been a breakthrough in GOP support for tax hikes, with CNBC's John Harwood; Rep. Dennis Kucinich, (D-OH); Byron Dorgan, (D) fmr. North Dakota gov.; Sen Kay Bailey Hutchison, (R-TX); and Steve Forbes, Forbes. View

Doomsday Doubters And The Debt Ceiling
By Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times
President Obama says that if Congress doesn't raise the debt ceiling by Aug. 2, the consequences will be dire. A long list of economists and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce agree. Even the Republican leader in the U.S. Senate agrees. Read more

Insiders Split On Debt Ceiling Winners And Losers
By James A. Barnes and Peter Bell, National Journal
Democratic and Republican political operatives were divided on who has gained ground politically and who has lost yards in the debt ceiling debate, however, Democrats have a more cohesive view on how the negations have played out so far, while Republicans are more uncertain. Those are two key findings in this week's National Journal Political Insiders Poll. Read more

Romney Still Ahead, But With Big Vulnerabilities In Quest For GOP Nod
By Dan Balz and Jon Cohen, The Washington Post
Mitt Romney leads the wide-open contest for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination. But a new Washington Post-ABC News poll underscores his vulnerabilities as a front-runner, as well as Sarah Palin’s lingering power to shake up the race if she decides to run. Read more

In 2006 Interview, Bachmann Attacks Same-Sex Marriage, 'Big Love' Series
By Beth Reinhard, National Journal
As a state lawmaker in 2006, now-Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., warned that efforts to allow same-sex marriage would open the door to polygamy and “group marriage,’’ and she condemned a popular cable television series about a fundamentalist Mormon with three wives. Read more

Boehner Calls For Backup Plan, Won't Budge On Taxes
By Major Garrett, National Journal
House Speaker John Boehner Thursday called for President Obama and congressional leaders to consider “backup strategies” to “solve” the looming default crisis as no path to raise the nation’s $14.3 trillion debt ceiling is visible or legislatively viable. Read more

Jul 22, 2011

On the Radar: July 22, 2011

Boehner And Obama Nearing Deal On Cuts And Taxes
By Jackie Calmes and Carl Hulse, The New York Times
President Obama and the Republican House speaker, John A. Boehner, once again struggled against resistance from their respective parties on Thursday as they tried to shape a sweeping deficit-reduction agreement that could avert a government default in less than two weeks. Read more

President's Debt Offer Risky But Could Be Win-Win
By Charles Babington, Associated Press
It's hard to know which is more surprising: a Democratic president pushing historic cuts in spending, including Social Security and Medicare. Or a Republican-controlled House refusing to accept the deal and declare a huge victory for long-sought GOP goals. Read more

Obama And Boehner Advance Toward Deal To Cut Deficit
By Naftali Bendavid, Carol E. Lee and Janet Hook, The Wall Street Journal
President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner are moving toward a deficit-reduction deal that could cut as much as $3 trillion in spending and overhaul the tax code by the end of next year to raise up to $1 trillion, according to people familiar with the talks. Read more

Debt Talks Continue: Deal Ahead?
By John Harwood, CNBC
Debt deal meetings are underway, with CNBC's John Harwood; Sen. Mark Uduall, (D-CO); and Sen. Ron Johnson, (R-WI). View

Fury At Murdoch Reflects Pent-Up Anger Of Intimidated Politicians
By Dan Balz, The Washington Post
The phone-hacking scandal that has driven Rupert Murdoch and his empire into retreat and gripped audiences on both sides of the Atlantic is playing out against the backdrop of a combustible political-media culture vastly different from that in the United States. Read more

Pledge Kludge
By John Dickerson, Slate
Washington is always thick with rumors—you can almost see them on the local Doppler. On Thursday afternoon, a rumor surfaced that President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner were close to a deal on raising the debt ceiling. Read more

As Obama, Boehner Rush To Strike Deal, Democrats Are Left Fuming
By Lori Montgomery and Paul Kane, The Washington Post
President Obama and House Speaker John A. Boehner rushed Thursday to strike agreement on a far-reaching plan to reduce the national debt but faced a revolt from Democrats furious that the accord appeared to include no immediate provision to raise taxes. Read more

Democrats Erupt Over Latest Plan On Debt Ceiling
By Lisa Mascaro and Christi Parsons, Los Angeles Times
As President Obama pushed hard for a grand deal to reduce the federal deficit, he ignited a furor among congressional Democrats on Thursday by appearing to retreat from his insistence that spending cuts and revenue increases be included in the same package. Read more

What Happened To The Recovery?
By David Wessel, The Wall Street Journal
Many economists have ratcheted down their growth forecasts for the U.S. economy in 2011 from predictions made just a few months ago. Three hypotheses from the Journal's David Wessel on what derailed the recovery. View

Cantor’s Moment Of Choosing
By Major Garrett, National Journal
The day of reckoning on the debt ceiling is coming, and for no one in Congress is it more portentous than for House Majority Leader Eric Cantor. A political figure of unarguable talent and ambition, the Virginia Republican could one day pursue any number of jobs: speaker of the House, governor of his home state, U.S. senator. Some Republicans believe that Cantor fantasizes about being the nation’s first Jewish president. Read more

On Debt-Ceiling Debate, GOP Presidential Candidates Talk Tough, Walk Softly
By Karen Tumulty and Philip Rucker, The Washington Post
Candidates enjoy a luxury that those who actually hold office don’t have: They can take a stand without taking a position. Eager to establish themselves as fiscal disciplinarians, the Republican candidates for president are all offering tough rhetoric in the debate over the federal debt ceiling. Read more


Jul 25, 2011

On the Radar: July 25, 2011

Debt Aspirations Don't Match The Situation
By Major Garrett, National Journal
The aspirations don't match the situation. To hear them talk, the White House and every key player on Capitol Hill wants to avoid the first-ever default in American history. That's the aspiration. Read more

Rival Debt Plans Being Assembled By Party Leaders
By Helene Cooper and Jennifer Steinhauer, The New York Times
The House speaker, John A. Boehner, and the Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, were preparing separate backup plans to raise the nation’s debt ceiling on Sunday after they and the White House were unable to form a bipartisan plan that would end an increasingly grim standoff over the federal budget. Read more

Lawmakers Renew Push For Deal On Cutting Deficit
By Jackie Calmes and Carl Hulse, The New York Times
Despite growing fears that world markets might react negatively to a breakdown in the federal budget negotiations, Congressional leaders clashed Saturday night as they tried to reach a new deficit-reduction agreement that Speaker John A. Boehner told colleagues could cut $3 trillion to $4 trillion in spending over 10 years. Read more

Markets Shiver Over Debt Gridlock
By David Wessel, The Wall Street Journal
Republicans and Democrats remain split on how much to increase the U.S. debt limit as the deadline looms, causing shivers across global markets. WSJ's Jake Lee, David Wessel and Peter Stein discuss. View

Waiting On A Debt Deal
By Eamon Javers, CNBC
CNBC's Eamon Javers has an update on political leaders meeting to discuss the debt ceiling and insight on how the markets will be reacting this week, with David Joy, Ameriprise Financial; Dan Greenhaus, BTIG. View

Working With A New Script To Head Off A Crisis
By John Harwood, The New York Times
The toughest legislative negotiations always resemble those old movies in which a terrified and helpless damsel lies bound to the railroad tracks. Read more

Debt-Limit Compromise Elusive As Separate Strategies Take Shape In House, Senate
By Lori Montgomery, The Washington Post
House and Senate leaders were preparing separate backup plans Sunday to raise the federal debt limit after another day of intense negotiations failed to break a partisan impasse that threatens to throw the government into default next week. Read more

Intra-GOP Wars Block Path To Debt Ceiling Accord
By Charles Babington, Associated Press
What if they yield, even a little? Call it GOP Primary Fear. A major hurdle to breaking the federal debt-ceiling impasse is the worry by House Republicans that they will invite primary election challenges from the right if they give ground to Democrats on the issue of higher tax revenues. Read more

Debt Talks Dissolve Again
By Naftali Bendavid, Carol E. Lee, and Corey Boles, The Wall Street Journal
Congressional talks dissolved in recrimination again Saturday night, as the latest proposal for cutting the deficit and raising the government's debt limit hit a wall with 10 days left before the U.S. begins defaulting on its obligations. Read more

A Boomlet Of Perrymania
By Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times
For a man who hasn't formally decided whether to run for president, Texas Gov. Rick Perry sure sounds a lot like a candidate. Read more

By John Dickerson, Slate Magazine
A grand bargain on the debt ceiling has blown up, and the debate over who to blame has just begun.  Read more

Jul 26, 2011

On the Radar: July 26, 2011

A ‘Unique Opportunity’ On The Debt Ceiling, Lost
By Jackie Calmes, The New York Times
Leaders of both parties have said for months that the need to raise the nation’s borrowing limit offered a “unique opportunity” for a bipartisan deal that would constrain the mounting federal debt. Read more

Obama Warns Of Default Risk
By Naftali Bendavid and Carol E. Lee, The Wall Street Journal
With Congress deadlocked a week before the government runs out of cash to pay its bills, President Barack Obama warned Monday in his starkest terms yet that the U.S. is on the brink of a default that could trigger an economic upheaval. Read more

Lawmakers Deadlocked Over Deal
By Eamon Javers, CNBC
CNBC's Eamon Javers has the update on the bi-partisan debt deal talks. View

Speeches By Obama, Boehner Achieve Political Ends, But Little Else
By Dan Balz, The Washington Post
The president and the House speaker couched their words Monday night in the language of compromise and reassurance. But at the start of a critical week of legislative maneuvering, each delivered a partisan message that cast blame on the other for a breakdown that threatens the nation’s credit rating, its financial markets and the fragile economy. Read more

Obama Keeps Mum On A Word Dirtier Than 'Compromise
By Major Garrett, National Journal
Washington may have become, as President Obama said on Monday, a place where "compromise has become a dirty word," but in the context of the menacing debt-limit crisis there was a far dirtier word he didn't utter. Read more

Obama Says Debt Deal Must Include Revenues
By Christi Parsons, Los Angeles Times
As Republicans and Democrats continue trying to hammer out the details of rival plans to avert a debt crisis, President Obama on Monday called for a proposal that will raise more revenue from the wealthy — a provision that has vexed his talks with the House speaker. Read more

Disdain For Compromise Hinders Debt Talks
By Charles Babington, Associated Press
Lawmakers are divided, it turns out, on what divided government means. That helps explain why reaching a debt-ceiling accord is so hard. Read more

President Obama, House Speaker Boehner Present Dueling Debt-Limit Plans to Nation
By Paul Kane and Lori Montgomery, The Washington Post
President Obama and House Speaker John A. Boehner escalated their battle over the national debt on Monday, pressing their arguments in a pair of prime-time television addresses as Congress remained at a loss over how to keep the United States from defaulting next week for the first time. Read more

Romney's Focus On Economic Issues
By John Harwood, CNBC
An inside look at Mitt Romney's campaign trail, the details on why he thinks he can turn the economy around, and whether Republicans are really willing to reduce government in order to not raise taxes, with CNBC's John Harwood & Sen. Judd Gregg (R-NH). View

Primary Calendar Stirs Republican Anxiety
By Jeff Zeleny, The Washington Post
Even as the Republican presidential contenders zigzag through Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, an uncertain and potentially unwieldy primary schedule in subsequent states is alarming party leaders, who fear that the voting could start earlier, last longer and complicate efforts to confront President Obama next year. Read more