News / USA

Possible End to US Fiscal Impasse Takes Shape in Senate

Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., is surrounded by reporters after leaving the office of Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ken., on Capitol Hill on Oct. 14, 2013.
Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., is surrounded by reporters after leaving the office of Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ken., on Capitol Hill on Oct. 14, 2013.
Michael Bowman
A bipartisan accord to reopen the U.S. government and avoid a debt default is taking shape in the Senate, as a federal shutdown enters a third week and potential U.S. insolvency looms just days away. The deal is not finalized, and may face significant opposition in the Republican-led House of Representatives.

A way out of America’s fiscal impasse could soon be at hand, according to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid is surrounded by reporters after leaving the office of Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell on Capitol Hill, Oct. 14, 2013.Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid is surrounded by reporters after leaving the office of Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell on Capitol Hill, Oct. 14, 2013.
x
Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid is surrounded by reporters after leaving the office of Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell on Capitol Hill, Oct. 14, 2013.
Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid is surrounded by reporters after leaving the office of Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell on Capitol Hill, Oct. 14, 2013.
“We have made tremendous progress. We are not there yet. But tremendous progress, and everyone just needs to be patient," said Reid.

The chamber’s Republican Leader, Senator Mitch McConnell, agreed, saying two days of negotiations have yielded results.

“We had a good day yesterday. We had another good day today. I think it is safe to say we have made substantial progress," said McConnell.

News reports say the accord as currently envisioned would fund the federal government into mid-January and extend the U.S. borrowing limit into February, and sets the stage for bicameral budget negotiations from now through mid-December. It is hoped those negotiations would produce a subsequent accord on multiple fiscal matters. Minor changes to President Barack Obama’s signature health care law have neither been agreed to nor ruled out.

Democrats are sounding increasingly confident that a devastating debt default will be averted. Senator Joe Manchin:

“We will not default. I am positive of that. I mean, nothing is a sure thing, but I am as sure as I can be on that one," said Manchin.

Senate Republicans, meanwhile, seem to have abandoned hope of using the nation’s current fiscal deadlines as leverage to block the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, or to force even greater austerity on the federal budget. Senator Rand Paul said the fiscal impasse must end.

“I think we need to get an agreement and open the government back up," said Paul.

A Senate deal could be finalized later Tuesday. Just how quickly the chamber will be able to vote on the measure depends on whether members refrain from procedural motions and delaying tactics. A leading foe of Obamacare, Republican Senator Ted Cruz, was asked if he plans to object to swift consideration of any deal that emerges.

“We will have to wait to see what the details are," said Cruz.

Even if an accord passes the Senate, it faces an uncertain fate in the House of Representatives. A spokesman for Republican House Speaker John Boehner said any deal approved by the Senate will be reviewed - and possibly altered - in the House. Treasury officials say the United States risks a debt default unless both houses of Congress pass an identical bill raising the borrowing cap by Thursday.

You May Like

Taliban's New Leader Says Jihad Will Continue

Top US Afghan diplomat also meets with Pakistani, Afghan officials following news of Mullah Omar's death More

Video US Landmark Pushes Endangered Species

People gathered in streets, on rooftops in Manhattan to see image highlights that covered 33 floors of Empire State Building More

World’s Widest Suspension Bridge Being Built Over Bosphorus

Once built, Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge will span 2 kilometers with about 1.5 kilometers over water, and will be longest suspension bridge in world carrying rail system More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Fed from dc from: Dc
October 15, 2013 5:30 PM
As Americans I ask we demand congress repeal their 27 th amendment which guarantees they get paid. We Feds are sitting he scared since we won't have $ to buy gas. Please vote out every sitting bet of congress

by: Terry from: Summerland BC
October 14, 2013 9:08 PM
thank god Cruz left canada

by: Rudy Haugeneder from: Canada
October 14, 2013 9:01 PM
Nothing settled. Nothing done. America is in deep financial trouble and a couple of unexpected international political upsets or a national disaster -- like a "big one" quake on the West Coast or along the Mississippi or, still a threat this year, a major, major hurricane hitting the heart of Miami -- could cripple the economy and destroy insurance companies.
But those catastrophes aside, Congress is urinating away domestic and international confidence in the American social, political and financial systems and speed the USA's eventual collapse. Of course readers will think these concerns silly, but any one or combination could not only make you look stupid but make you financially broken.

by: The Matrix from: USA
October 14, 2013 6:34 PM
Ladies and Gentlemen, this is a message from the architects of the Matrix: EVERYTHING IS OK.

by: Rudy Haugeneder from: Victoria, BC, Canada
October 14, 2013 3:15 PM
Here's what additional American debt will do.
Soon the Mexican Peso will become the world's reserve currency and Americans will be breaking down the fence keeping them out of Mexico and fighting Mexican border guards in order to get jobs in the ever-expanding Mexican economy.
At the same time, the United States government will declare America is a bilingual nation: English and Spanish.

by: Markt
October 14, 2013 2:16 PM
in 2008, Obama's word was "Change" in 2013, Obama's legacy will be "Shutdown" Quite a difference from those heady days five years ago. Let us hope this crisis is resolved, and resolved quickly, there are hundreds of thousands of families out there really struggling without a paycheck in sight, and millions more who are struggling without the government assistance they have grown to depend on.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missionsi
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X
George Putic
July 30, 2015 8:59 PM
Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video 'Metal Muscles' Flex a New Bionic Hand

Artificial limbs, including the most complex of them – the human hand – are getting more life-like and useful due to constant advances in tiny hydraulic, pneumatic and electric motors called actuators. But now, as VOA’s George Putic reports, scientists in Germany say the future of the prosthetic hand may lie not in motors but in wires that can ‘remember’ their shape.
Video

Video Russia Accused of Abusing Interpol to Pursue Opponents

A British pro-democracy group has accused Russia of abusing the global law enforcement agency Interpol by requesting the arrest and extradition of political opponents. A new report by the group notes such requests can mean the accused are unable to travel and are often unable to open bank accounts. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video 'Positive Atmosphere' Points Toward TPP Trade Deal in Hawaii

Talks on a major new trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations are said to be nearing completion in Hawaii. Some trade experts say the "positive atmosphere" at the discussions could mean a deal is within reach, but there is still hard bargaining to be done over many issues and products, including U.S. drugs and Japanese rice. VOA's Jim Randle reports.
Video

Video Genome Initiative Urgently Moves to Freeze DNA Before Species Go Extinct

Earth is in the midst of its sixth mass extinction. The last such event was caused by an asteroid 66 million years ago. It killed off the dinosaurs and practically everything else. So scientists are in a race against time to classify the estimated 11 million species alive today. So far only 2 million are described by science, and researchers are worried many will disappear before they even have a name. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Scientists: One-Dose Malaria Cure is Possible

Scientists have long been trying to develop an effective protection and cure for malaria - one of the deadliest diseases that affects people in tropical areas, especially children. As the World Health Organization announces plans to begin clinical trials of a promising new vaccine, scientists in South Africa report that they too are at an important threshold. George Putic reports, they are testing a compound that could be a single-dose cure for malaria.
Video

Video 'New York' Magazine Features 35 Cosby Accusers

The latest issue of 'New York' magazine features 35 women who say they were drugged and raped by film and television celebrity Bill Cosby. The women are aged from 44 to 80 and come from different walks of life and races. The magazine interviewed each of them separately, but Zlatica Hoke reports their stories are similar.
Video

Video US Calls Fight Against Human Trafficking a Must Win

The United States is promising not to give up its fight against what Secretary of State John Kerry calls the “scourge” of modern slavery. Officials released the country’s annual human trafficking report Monday – a report that’s being met with some criticism. VOA’s National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more from the State Department.
Video

Video Washington DC Underground Streetcar Station to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C.’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.

VOA Blogs