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

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Christmas Gains Popularity in Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid