News / USA

Congress Set to Pass Budget Compromise, Avert Shutdown

Congress Set to Pass Budget Compromise, Avert Shutdowni
X
December 12, 2013
The U.S. House of Representatives is set to vote Thursday on a bipartisan budget agreement which would fund the federal government for the next two years. Analysts say the deal would avert the threat of budget showdowns and potential government shutdowns. But it fails to address the fundamental, long-term issue of spending priorities that has divided Congress for the past two years. VOA congressional correspondent Cindy Saine reports from Capitol Hill.
TEXT SIZE - +
Cindy Saine
— The U.S. House of Representatives is set to vote Thursday on a bipartisan budget agreement which would fund the federal government for the next two years.  Analysts say the deal would avert the threat of budget showdowns and potential government shutdowns. But it fails to address the fundamental, long-term issue of spending priorities that has divided Congress for the past two years. 

Before the holiday recess, House members have some unfinished business to tend to.  And that's to vote on the budget, as current spending authority expires on January 15.

Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray, a Democrat, and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, a Republican,  announced the agreement.  If passed, it would fund operations at about $1 trillion a year for the next two years.  Ryan praised the deal.

"By having a budget agreement that does not raise taxes, that does reduce the deficit, and produces some certainty and prevents government shutdowns - we think is a good agreement," said Ryan.

Ryan said he is optimistic that the bill will pass in the House of Representatives, and President Barack Obama welcomed the measure, which is also likely to pass in the Democratic-controlled Senate.  

But some conservative groups have attacked the deal because it will not cut spending as much as they want. This provoked a strong reaction from House Speaker John Boehner.

“This is ridiculous.  Listen, if you’re for more deficit reduction, you’re for this agreement," said Boehner.

Democrats say they are disappointed because the deal fails to extend unemployment benefits for the long-term jobless.  House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi:

“It is absolutely unconscionable that we would possibly even consider leaving Washington, DC without passing those benefits," said Pelosi.

Budget analyst Stan Collender says a modest agreement is the best Americans could hope for.

“Congress would have trouble agreeing on what to order for lunch these days, so the idea that they are going to come up with an agreement on big priorities, defense versus non-defense, taxes versus spending, is extremely unlikely given the incredibly difficult, highly, hyper-partisan politics that exist in the United States today," said Collender.

With lawmakers eager to leave town, other issues like immigration reform will have to wait until next year.

You May Like

Algerians Vote in Presidential Election

There were few media reports of protests and clashes around the country, but so far no significant violence More

Sharks More Evolved than Previously Thought

The discovery could “profoundly affect our understanding of evolutionary history” More

Pakistan Military Asked to Protect Polio Workers

Request comes as authorities say a Taliban ban on vaccinations in 2012 and deadly attacks on anti-polio teams have prevented thousands of children from getting inoculated More

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.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid