World News

Senate Leaders Reach Deal on Shutdown, Debt



U.S. Senate leaders have crafted a last-minute deal to reopen the federal government and avoid a U.S. default likely to have harmful effects on the global economy.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell announced the deal Wednesday. Reid said both sides set aside their differences so the country could avoid financial "disaster."

The proposal keeps the government running until January 15 and raises the borrowing limit enough to put off the risk of default until February 7.

White House spokesman Jay Carney praised Senate leaders for reaching a bipartisan proposal. He said President Barack Obama hopes both houses of Congress work swiftly to pass the legislation.

Reid and McConnell worked on a proposal that could pass both houses of Congress Wednesday and be signed by Mr. Obama by Thursday. But it is unclear if the Republican-led House will have the votes to give final approval to the plan.



Thursday is the deadline when the U.S. Treasury Department has said it will reach its borrowing limit and risk default. Financial markets could plunge without a deal.

The U.S. government shutdown began its third week Tuesday, with all but essential services closed, along with many national parks, museums, and monuments.

Featured Story

FILE - Boris Nemtsov speaks to The Associated Press Television News in Moscow, Russia, Dec. 21, 2011.

Bill Browder Tells VOA Russian About Boris Nemtsov Murder

Noted critic of President Putin is co-founder of Hermitage Capital Management fund that has been described as one of biggest foreign investors in Russia from 1995 to 2006 More