Everyone says that nobody wants a government shutdown, but freshman lawmakers who are backed by the Tea Party are being pressured not to compromise. Meanwhile, in private talks, House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) and Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) met with President Obama Wednesday night. They said they made progress. However, there is no compromise yet, explains Takeaway Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich, who is following developments in Washington.
Takeaway Washington correspondent, Todd Zwillich has the latest on the government shutdown as lawmakers continue to negotiate the budget.
Congressman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), unveiled his budget yesterday, proposing cuts of some $6.2 trillion over the next decade. Medicare and Medicaid will fundamentally change under Ryan's plan — with Medicare losing $389 billion, and $735 billion being cut from Medicaid. Todd Zwillich, The Takeaway's Washington correspondent details what parts of the budget will affect Americans the most. Theda Skocpol, professor of sociology and government at Harvard University, explains how Medicare and Medicaid will change under Ryan's plan.
House Majority Leader John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid sat behind closed doors yesterday, trying to come to compromise over the budget, but leaders in both parties seemed to be bracing for a real government shutdown by the end of the week. President Obama urged both Democrats and Republicans to put aside petty differences and come to a compromise. If they don't, every federal agency will have to come up with a contingency plan, especially the Office of Management and Budget, and the Office of Personnel Management.
President Barack Obama announced his plans to run for reelection in a web video early Monday. Meanwhile, Friday is the deadline for Congress to negotiate a federal budget deal for 2011; and the budget for 2012 still needs to be settled. Todd Zwillich, Takeaway Washington correspondent has the latest from the Capitol.
Gadhafi's forces have made gains in the struggle in Libya while U.S. forces have pulled back their mission, handing control over to NATO. This has lead to questions on Capitol Hill about U.S. policy in Libya. Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen testified before Congress Thursday. Takeaway Washington correspondent, Todd Zwillich reports.
Today, as the Tea Party Patriots rally outside the Capitol Building, lawmakers might actually be close to a compromise on the federal budget. Members of the Senate Appropriations Committee met with their House counterparts last night to see if they could strike a deal to avoid a government shutdown. But the compromise in question would include $33 billion in cuts — $28 billion less than the budget Republicans passed in the House. How will the Tea Party react to a deal with Democrats? What are the implications for Speaker of the House John Boehner?
After weeks of temporary fixes and political battling, Congress is preparing for a government shutdown over the national budget. What is preventing Republicans and Democrats from finding common ground? It could be the Tea Party, which is planning a rally for Thursday at the Capitol to call on Republican leadership to make no compromises on spending. Takeaway Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich has more about this continuing standoff and the implications of a shutdown.
President Barack Obama stood before the nation yesterday and explained our role in the allied forces air assault on Libya and its embattled leader Col. Moammar Gadhafi. While he recognized Americans' hesitation for more involvement in the Middle East, the President said that Libya represented a unique situation and a challenge to American ideas about freedom and human decency. Todd Zwillich, The Takeaway's Washington correspondent, has reactions from Washington to the speech. Dirk Vandewalle, professor of government at Dartmouth and the author of, "A History of Modern Libya," looks at how President Obama's speech will impact the current situation in Libya.
President Obama will speak about Libya Monday evening. His speech comes on the heels of NATO taking full control of the operation in Libya. Todd Zwillich, Takeaway Washington correspondent helps shed light on the debate in Congress over whether our involvement in Libya is in the country's best interest. How will Congress react to the president's speech? There are rumblings of an effort de-fund the effort in Libya by some Democratic members in the House.
Since President Obama authorized military action in Libya, politicians on both sides of the aisle have complained the president did not follow the proper and legal channels towards war. Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) said the President's decision might render him impeachable. House speaker John Boehner (R-OH) complained that Obama hadn't briefed members of Congress. Technically speaking, should the President have asked Congress before attacking Libya?
Over the last few days, the U.S. moved very quickly from a U.N. resolution authorizing military intervention in Libya to missiles and bombs actually striking the country. In many ways, members of Congress are still catching up with the news from the White House and they have been reacting both with support and anger. Who's in charge of the no-fly zone: Britain, France or the U.S.? Who exactly are the Libyan rebels we're supporting? And why didn't President Obama consult Congress before authorizing military intervention?
"Republicans control one half of one third of our government. There are a lot of other players that we need to work with," House Speaker, John Boehner told the press Thursday as another budget extension was voted on. He finds himself between a rock and hard place, explains Takeaway Washington correspondent, Todd Zwillich. Rep. Boehner will have to negotiate with both the Tea Party and democrats Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi and President Obama. Meanwhile, the House voted to defund public radio production in a bill that will likely not pass the Senate.
As Japan works to contain a nuclear disaster, lawmakers in the United States are debating the role of nuclear energy in this country. So far the Obama administration and members of congress have continued to support nuclear energy, but renewed fear has forced them to question the safety of reactors on U.S. soil. The Takeaway's Washington correspondent, Todd Zwillich reports from Wednesday's Congressional hearing with Energy Secretary Steven Chu and Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Gregory Jaczko.
Greg Jaczko, chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission briefed reporters at the White House on Tuesday, saying that a nuclear emergency like the one in Japan could not happen in the United States. “Based on the type of reactor design and the nature of the accident we see a very low likelihood, really a very low probability that there’s any possibility of harmful radiation levels in the United States or in Hawaii, or in any other U.S. territories," he said.
However, Washington is edge about what to do about our own nuclear power sources here in the U.S. Todd Zwillich, Washington correspondent for The Takeaway got reaction from the Capitol.
Testimony at the hearing on "The Extent of Radicalization in the American Muslim Community" in Washington was divisive. While some witnesses spoke of a campaign to promote terrorism stemming from within American mosques, others worried that broad accusations could further empower extremism and alienate the Muslim community. The hearings, spearheaded by New York Republican Rep. Peter T. King, were the first in a series addressing issues of Muslim radicalization in different areas of society. But apart from the rhetoric, what did the hearings actually achieve in the first place?
Senator John Ensign (R-Nev.) announced his pending retirement yesterday, saying he would not run in the 2012 election. The announcement came to the obvious relief of many of his colleagues — Sen. Ensign is currently being investigated for an alleged affair with a former staffer. But he's not the only lawmaker planning to sit out the coming election; seven others have also announced plans to get out of politics, or at least, government. Joining us to talk about the other lawmakers who are retiring, and how that may challenge party strategy, is Takeaway Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich.
As the battle over the budget continues in Congress this week, Speaker of the House John Boehner faces what might be his first big test as he has been criticized by both the right and the left. The Tea Party has put extreme pressure on Boehner to keep him from compromising with President Obama and the Democrats; at the same time he faces a Senate that's not under his party's control. The Takeaway's Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich has the latest on the budget negotiations and whether a government shutdown is still a possibility.
The fight over the budget continues on Capitol Hill. Tea Party members want to see a massive amount cut from the budget, while Democrats and Republicans see a policy fight within the proposed cuts. There are over 100 policy riders included in the spending bill that Republicans passed two weeks ago; these directly affect President Obama's domestic agenda. There are restrictions on funding for the EPA, the FDA, health care reform and abortion. Takeaway's Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich reports on how this fight is playing out.
In an effort to avoid a government shutdown, the U.S. House approved a stopgap budget on Tuesday that would buy Congress more time to approve a final budget. The Senate is expected to vote on the measure today. In a vote of 335-91, the House voted to cut $4 billion in spending in order to keep the government open until March 18. We talk with Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich about the bargaining chips being used to avoid a government shutdown.