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Sep 22, 2015

U.S. Senate to sidestep abortion fight in funding bill

WASHINGTON, Sept 22 (Reuters) – A legislative holding action
to avert a U.S. government shutdown began taking shape in the
Senate on Tuesday, but it was still far from certain whether a
dispute over funding for women’s healthcare group Planned
Parenthood could be overcome.

With only days remaining before an Oct. 1 deadline for
action, Senate leaders said they were pursuing a stop-gap
funding bill to extend the present federal budget for about 10
weeks beyond the Sept. 30 end of the fiscal year.

Sep 21, 2015

Conservatives firm on Planned Parenthood as shutdown looms

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – As a possible U.S. government shutdown loomed, the leader of the House of Representatives’ most conservative Republicans vowed on Monday to oppose any stop-gap funding bill that keeps federal money flowing to Planned Parenthood.

In a showdown that threatens to jolt financial markets and the economy, Republican leaders were struggling to craft a government funding extension that meets anti-abortion conservatives’ demands to cut off the women’s healthcare group.

Sep 18, 2015

U.S. report calls for release of immigrant children from detention

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A stinging report released on
Thursday called on the Obama administration to reverse course
and stop detentions of women and children who entered the United
States illegally but might qualify for asylum.

The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights said it found evidence
that the federal government “was interfering with the
constitutional rights afforded to detained immigrants,”
including their access to legal representation.

Sep 16, 2015

Obama presses for funding bill amid Republican disarray

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama urged the U.S. Congress on Wednesday to avoid a government shutdown starting Oct. 1, as Republican leaders in the House of Representatives struggled to find a way to get enough votes to pass a funding bill.

Efforts were complicated by some conservatives who want to punish the women’s healthcare provider Planned Parenthood and attach language denying any federal funds to the group as part of a broader bill keeping the government running beyond Sept. 30.

Sep 10, 2015

Senate Democrats block effort to kill Iran nuclear deal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A Republican-backed effort to kill the Iran nuclear agreement was blocked in the U.S. Senate on Thursday, handing a major foreign policy victory to President Barack Obama.

Forty-two Democrats and independents voted against a measure to advance the bill, meaning opponents of the nuclear agreement failed to get the 60 votes needed in the 100-member chamber to proceed with a resolution of disapproval of the pact.

Sep 10, 2015

House Speaker Boehner says goal is to stop sale of ‘baby parts’

By Richard Cowan and Alina Selyukh

(Reuters) – U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John
Boehner said on Thursday the goal in negotiations over funding
for Planned Parenthood was to avoid a government shutdown on
Oct. 1 and also to stop the sale of “baby parts.”

“The goal here is not to shut down the government. The goal
is to stop these horrific practices of organizations selling
baby parts,” Boehner told reporters.

Sep 3, 2015

Obama moves on Central American migrant children questioned

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s emergency response to Central American children arriving in the United States without permission has spawned aggressive law enforcement efforts in Mexico where authorities rarely weigh humanitarian concerns, according to a report released on Thursday.

Last year, a flood of “unaccompanied minors” – children traveling without their parents – from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras rushed to the southwestern U.S. border with Mexico.

Aug 27, 2015

When Congress returns from vacation, budget fight looms

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Congress will soon embark on a high-stakes budget negotiation with President Barack Obama that, if productive, could give Republicans the increased military spending they want and Democrats the increased domestic spending they seek.

Alternatively, the federal government could shut down.

Scenarios in between these extremes are also possible, but congressional aides said outcomes were hard to predict since little behind-the-scenes progress was made on thorny issues during Congress’s five-week summer recess. It ends Sept. 8.

Aug 21, 2015

Obama builds Iran nuclear deal support one vote at a time

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama is gradually building support in the U.S. Congress for an international nuclear deal with Iran, working the phones to counter lobbying against the pact and sending a letter to lawmakers urging them to support it.

Obama needs to win the backing of one-third of either the House of Representatives or the Senate to prevent Republicans from killing the nuclear deal announced in July.

Aug 20, 2015

U.S. senators urge recall of all vehicles with Takata air bags

By Richard Cowan and Paul Lienert

(Reuters) – Two U.S. senators on Thursday called on Japanese
auto supplier Takata Corp to immediately recall all
vehicles containing the company’s air bags, a demand that could
affect more than 50 million cars on U.S. roads.

Senators Richard Blumenthal and Edward Markey, both
Democrats, serve on a Senate panel that has been investigating
problems with Takata air bags that can rupture and spew metal
shards at vehicle occupants. The defective air bags have been
connected with at least eight deaths and more than 100 injuries.

    • About Richard

      "I have been a Washington correspondent for Reuters since 2001. I have written about climate change and the environment, the U.S. Congress, politics, economic issues and agricultural trade disputes."
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