News / USA

    Obama, Lawmakers Meet for Third Day on US Debt

    President Barack Obama (r) with House Speaker John Boehner, as he meets with Republican and Democratic leaders regarding the debt ceiling, in the Cabinet Room of the White House,  July 11, 2011
    President Barack Obama (r) with House Speaker John Boehner, as he meets with Republican and Democratic leaders regarding the debt ceiling, in the Cabinet Room of the White House, July 11, 2011

    Negotiations between President Barack Obama and Republican lawmakers appear deadlocked, with Republican leaders sharply criticizing Mr. Obama's approach in talks about slashing U.S. budget deficits and raising the government's borrowing limit.  

    The president sat down with House and Senate Democratic and Republican leaders Tuesday for the third time in as many days.

    Just hours before, one of the eight congressional participants, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, delivered a blunt speech about the negotiations.

    Saying that he questioned whether resolving the country's fiscal problems is possible with Mr. Obama is president, McConnell offered this assessment of where the talks stand:

    "In my view, the president has presented us with three choices - smoke and mirrors, tax hikes or default [on the national debt]," said McConnell. "Republicans choose none of the above.  I had hoped to do good, but I refuse to do harm."

    McConnell said Republicans would "do the responsible thing" and ensure that the federal government does not default on its debt obligations.  Later, he described what he called a "last choice" option, which would involve Congress passing legislation to authorize President Obama to formally request debt ceiling increases into 2012, but require him to list specific spending cuts.

    The Treasury Department has set an August 2 deadline by which Congress must act to raise the federal debt ceiling.  Any compromise would need to occur well before then to allow for the necessary steps to enact the legislation.

    White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Mr. Obama would continue pressing "until the very end" for the biggest possible deal, which at one point involved proposals for as much as $4 trillion in spending cuts and revenue sources.

    Carney said the tone of the discussions has not been contentious, but "constructive and respectful," adding that a compromise would not be achieved if all sides listen to their most ideological members.

    "We will not get from here to there, either side, if we heed only the calls of our most ideological supporters," said Carney. "We have to acknowledge that maximalist positions will not prevail."  

    Earlier in the day, House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner said his fellow Republicans are still waiting for a specific plan from Mr. Obama.

    "Where's the president's plan?  When's he going to lay his cards on the table?  This debt limit increase is his problem," said Boehner. "And I think it's time for him to lead by putting his plan on the table, something that the Congress can pass."

    President Obama has said he will call congressional leaders back to the White House every day until a deficit and debt agreement is reached.

    Meanwhile, the president again used the media to press Congress for a compromise.  In an interview with CBS News, Mr. Obama warned that failure to raise the $14.3 trillion national debt limit by August 2 could result in millions of Americans not receiving Social Security and other payments, saying the government would lack sufficient funds.

    You May Like

    Video Democrats Clinton, Kaine Offer 'Very Different Vision' Than Trump

    In a jab at Trump, Clinton says her team wants to 'build bridges, not walls'; Obama Hails Kaine's record; Trump calls Kaine a 'job-killer'

    Turkey Wants Pakistan to Close Down institutions, Businesses Linked to Gulen

    Thousands of Pakistani students are enrolled in Gulen's commercial network of around two dozen institutions operating in Pakistan for over two decades

    AU Passport A Work in Progress

    Who will get the passport and what the benefits are still need to be worked out

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movementi
    X
    July 22, 2016 11:49 AM
    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Poor Residents in Cleveland Not Feeling High Hopes of Republican Convention

    With the Republican Party's National Convention underway in Cleveland, Ohio, delegates and visitors are gathered in the host city's downtown - waiting to hear from the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. But a few kilometers from the convention's venue, Cleveland's poorest residents are not convinced Trump or his policies will make a difference in their lives. VOA's Ramon Taylor spoke with some of these residents as well as some of the Republican delegates and filed this report.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video With Yosemite as Backdrop, Obama Praises National Parks

    Last month, President Barack Obama and his family visited some of the most beautiful national parks in the U.S. Using the majestic backdrop of a towering waterfall in California's Yosemite National Park, Obama praised the national park system which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. He talked about the importance of America’s “national treasures” and the need to protect them from climate change and other threats. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Counter-Islamic State Coalition Plots Next Steps

    As momentum shifts against Islamic State in Iraq, discussions are taking place about the next steps for driving the terrorist group from its final strongholds. Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting a counter-IS meeting at the State Department, a day after defense ministers from more than 30 countries reviewed and agreed upon a course of action. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb reports.
    Video

    Video Russia's Participation at Brazil Olympic Games Still In Question

    The International Olympic Committee has delayed a decision on whether to ban all Russian teams from competing in next month's Olympic Games in Brazil over allegations of an elaborate doping scheme. The World Anti-Doping Agency recently released an independent report alleging widespread doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. So far, only Russian track and field athletes have been barred from the Summer Games in Brazil. VOA's Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.
    Video

    Video Millennials Could Determine Who Wins Race to White House

    With only four months to go until Americans elect a new president, one group of voters is getting a lot more attention these days: those ages 18 to 35, a generation known as millennials. It’s a demographic that some analysts say could have the power to decide the 2016 election. But a lot depends on whether they actually turn out to vote. VOA’s Alexa Lamanna reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora