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Aug 22, 2014

Obama could seek new funds to battle Islamic State: Senate aide

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama could ask the U.S. Congress in coming weeks to approve new funds for airstrikes against Islamic State targets, according to a congressional aide, following the militants’ beheading of an American journalist and activities in Iraq.

A Senate Democratic aide on Friday said the Obama administration could detail by early to mid-September the amount of additional money it wants for the military operations, although the aide did not estimate the size of the possible funding request.

Aug 2, 2014

U.S. House passes border-security funding bill to speed deportations

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives voted on Friday to crack down on Central American migrants, including unaccompanied children, who are flooding to the U.S. border with Mexico, as lawmakers passed a $694 million border security bill.

The 223-189 vote came one day after conservative Republicans balked at an earlier version of the measure, exposing a deep rift between Tea Party activists and more mainstream Republicans.

Aug 1, 2014

Obama impeachment talk buoys Democrats in immigration showdown

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Few people in Washington believe Republicans will try to impeach President Barack Obama. Yet the notion that they might try has put Obama’s opponents on the defensive just as the president prepares to loosen immigration rules in a way they say violates his constitutional powers.

Recent statements from conservatives like Iowa Representative Steve King and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin that Obama should be impeached are allowing Democrats to portray Republicans as irrational, adding a toxic mix to the immigration debate in an election year.

Aug 1, 2014

Tea Party out-muscles Boehner on border-security funding

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A bill to fund border security blew up in House Speaker John Boehner’s face on Thursday, leaving Republicans in disarray and struggling to reconcile Tea Party demands with the need to deal with a humanitarian crisis on the southwestern border with Mexico.

Boehner, the top U.S. Republican, withdrew the bill after failing to corral a sufficient number of Republican votes for passage. That left him in an all-too-familiar position of having to somehow pass legislation or risk damage to his party in the November congressional elections in which Republicans are trying to capture the Senate.

Jul 31, 2014

House, Senate poised to pass rival border security bills

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Congress on Thursday is set to debate “emergency” border security legislation that lawmakers acknowledge will not be enacted but will enable them to campaign for re-election by arguing they worked to address a humanitarian crisis.

Republicans and Democrats have been sparring over President Barack Obama’s request for $3.7 billion to respond to the crisis in which tens of thousands of Central American children have tried to enter the United States illegally.

Jul 29, 2014

U.S. House Speaker Boehner dismisses talk of impeaching Obama

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Republicans have no plans to begin impeachment proceedings against President Barack Obama, House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner declared on Tuesday, putting the blame on Democrats for stirring up pre-midterm election tensions in Washington.

Boehner is, however, hoping this week to pass Republican legislation that would authorize a lawsuit, claiming Obama overstepped his powers in ordering unilateral changes to his landmark healthcare law known as “Obamacare.”

Jul 29, 2014

U.S. lawmakers worry about border security without extra funds

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Border security will probably suffer if Congress fails to act on President Barack Obama’s request for extra money to cope with the explosion of child migrants into the U.S. Southwest, lawmakers and congressional aides warned on Tuesday.

Those concerns came as Republicans in the House of Representatives considered a severely scaled-back version of the $3.7 billion in emergency funding Obama has requested to deal with the border crisis.

Jul 25, 2014

Obama immigration funding request languishes in U.S. Congress

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Republicans in the U.S. Congress on Friday struggled to bridge internal differences over how to deal with a flood of child migrants at the southwestern border, mulling proposals likely to be rejected by President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats.

The confrontation between the Republican-controlled House of Representatives and the Democratic-controlled Senate increased the risk that no compromise will be reached ahead of lawmakers’ summer break, which is set to begin at the end of next week.

Jul 24, 2014

Honduran president links border crisis to U.S. policy divide

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. lawmakers’ inability to reach an agreement on immigration policy is at least partly to blame for a crisis that has seen thousands of children flee Honduras for the U.S. border, Honduran President Juan Hernandez said on Thursday.

Human and drug traffickers are “perversely” exploiting confusion about U.S. immigration policy, Hernandez told reporters on Capitol Hill, flanked by Guatemalan President Otto Perez Molina and U.S. House of Representatives Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi, before a meeting with House Democrats.

Jul 22, 2014

Insight – Wave of migrant children threatens to swamp U.S. immigration courts

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A deluge of Central American children pouring into the United States threatens to burst the seams of already overstuffed immigration courts, and President Barack Obama’s steps to ease the crisis are likely to make matters worse rather than better for some, U.S. officials and immigration lawyers said.

“We are reaching a point of implosion, if we have not already reached it,” said Judge Dana Leigh Marks of San Francisco, who has been deciding immigration cases since 1987 and is president of the National Association of Immigration Judges.

    • 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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