News / USA

Washington Week: Time Running Out to End US Fiscal Impasse

Washington Week: Time Running Out to End US Fiscal Impassei
X
October 13, 2013 7:10 PM
The coming week will likely determine whether the United States defaults on its $16 trillion national debt, as a federal shutdown nears a third week. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, lawmakers are mounting final efforts to avoid financial calamity and restart government operations after a flurry of proposals from both Houses of Congress failed to attract bipartisan support.
Washington Week: Time Running Out to End US Fiscal Impasse
Michael Bowman
The coming week will likely determine whether the United States defaults on its $16 trillion national debt, as a federal shutdown nears a third week. Lawmakers are mounting final efforts to avoid financial calamity and restart government operations after a flurry of proposals from both houses of Congress failed to attract bipartisan support.

Fiscal talks broke down Saturday between Republican leaders of the House of Representatives and the White House.  In the Senate, meanwhile, Republicans blocked a Democratic bill to raise America’s borrowing limit for more than a year, and Democrats rejected a Republican proposal with short-term fixes to the debt limit and the federal shutdown.
 
Discussions are continuing in the Senate between Majority Leader Harry Reid and his Republican counterpart, Mitch McConnell.
 
“Senator McConnell and I have been in this body for a long time.  We have done things for a long time together.  I know him, he knows me.  We do not agree on everything,” said Reid.
 
McConnell has long advocated dialogue. “Talk we should.  The American people have given us divided government.  And when you have divided government, it means you have to talk to each other,” said McConnell.
 
But talks do not guarantee agreement.  President Barack Obama continues to reject Republican stipulations for extending the debt limit or reopening the government.
 
“Manufacturing crises to extract massive concessions is not how our democracy works, and we have to stop it.  Politics is a battle of ideas, but you advance those ideas through elections and legislation - not extortion,” said Obama.
 
House Republicans, meanwhile, have given no indication they will accept any unconditional plan to end the fiscal impasse.  In addition, divisions have opened between House and Senate Republicans, adding to doubts that any bipartisan accord reached in one chamber will be embraced by the other.
 
Treasury officials say the U.S government risks insolvency unless both houses of Congress vote to raise the debt limit by this Thursday.  And, the ongoing government shutdown is believed to be shaving U.S. economic output a little more each day it drags on.

You May Like

Missouri Town Braces for Possible Racial Unrest

Situation in Ferguson hinges on whether white police officer will be indicted for August shooting death of unarmed black teen; decision could come Monday More

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of 1930s Deadly Famine

President Poroshenko compares Soviet-era ‘genocide’ to current tactics of pro-Russia rebels in Ukraine's east More

S. Philippines Convictions Elusive 5 Years After Election-related Killings

Officials vowed to deliver justice as the nation marked the anniversary of the country's worst political massacre that left 58 dead, more than half media More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Faminei
X
Daniel Schearf
November 23, 2014 4:32 PM
During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video Law Enforcement, Activists in Ferguson Agree to Keep Peace

Authorities in Ferguson, Missouri, say they have agreed with protest leaders to maintain peace when a grand jury reaches its decision on whether to indict a white police officer in the shooting death of a black teenager. Ferguson, a suburb of St. Louis, has been the scene of intermittent violence since the August 9 shooting intensified long-simmering antagonism between the police and the African-American community. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Gay Evangelicals Argue That Bible Does Not Condemn Homosexuality

More than 30 U.S. states now recognize same-sex marriages, and an increasing number of mainline American churches are blessing them. But evangelical church members- which account for around 30 percent of the U.S. adult population - believe the Bible unequivocally condemns homosexuality. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender evangelicals are coming out. Backed by a prominent evangelical scholar, they argue that the traditional reading of the bible is wrong.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid