News / USA

House GOP Plan Unconditional US Debt Ceiling Vote

FILE - In this Feb. 6, 2014 file photo, House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington.
FILE - In this Feb. 6, 2014 file photo, House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington.
Cindy Saine
In an abrupt shift, House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner says the House will vote late Tuesday to raise the nation's debt limit with no policy conditions attached. A White House official welcomed the vote, saying it would boost confidence and investment in the United States. 

Boehner displayed dark humor, singing “My oh my, what a wonderful day,” after failing to convince a majority in his own party to back his plan to raise the nation's debt ceiling. 

The Republican speaker wanted to link the action, necessary to avoid default on government debt, to the repeal of an unpopular military pension cut. Conservative Republicans objected, saying the action wouldn't do anything to cut government spending and reduce the deficit.

Boehner said House Republicans are angry at Democratic President Barack Obama for refusing to even negotiate  spending cuts in trade for raising the debt ceiling.

"He is the one driving up the debt," Boehner said referring to the president. "Then the question they are [Republicans] asking is, ‘Well, why should I deal with his debt limit?’ And so the fact is, we will let the Democrats put the votes up. We will put a minimum number of votes up to get it passed."

Boehner said Democratic House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi assured him that virtually all House Democrats would vote for what is often called a “clean” debt ceiling bill, with no conditions attached, requiring only a few Republican votes to pass.

Democrats, who had called for a clean debt ceiling bill, welcomed Boehner’s decision. Pelosi said no matter who the president is or who controls Congress, the full faith and credit of the United States is not negotiable.

The move is a shift for Boehner, who in 2011 vowed not to raise the debt ceiling unless Democrats offered an equal amount of spending cuts, leading to a dramatic last minute showdown to raise the debt ceiling just hours ahead of a potential default, with the president signing a deficit reduction agreement. 

However, for the past two years, Obama has refused to negotiate on the debt ceiling and a White House official said he hoped the tactic of threatening default for budget debates is over and would never come again.

The Democratic-led Senate is also expected pass a debt ceiling bill with no conditions attached. U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew had said that he is now using extraordinary measures to pay U.S. bills and that Congress needs to act by Feb. 27.

You May Like

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

China to Open Stock Markets to Pension Funds

In unprecedented move, government to soon allow local pension funds to invest up to $94 billion in domestic shares More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Fareed from: San Francisco
February 11, 2014 4:39 PM
See Johnny, now that didn't hurt. See, no parade and statutes for Obama. Now extend unemployment insurance coverage, do the Jobs Bill, get Immigration Reform done and we will get back to you.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs