Susan's Feed
Mar 20, 2015

U.S. abortion politics snag effort to fix doctors’ Medicare pay

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Abortion politics in the U.S. Congress, already holding up a human trafficking bill and a key Obama administration nomination, are now also complicating bipartisan talks on a deal that would spare physicians from Medicare pay cuts.

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and another senior Democrat, Senator Ron Wyden, say they’re worried that an emerging House of Representatives deal to rewrite Medicare’s flawed doctor-pay formula will include anti-abortion language.

Mar 19, 2015

Emails sought of nearly a dozen U.S. State Dept. workers under Clinton

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Congress has subpoenaed the emails of “close to a dozen” people who worked in the State Department for Hillary Clinton when she was secretary of state, the chairman of the U.S. House committee investigating the 2012 Benghazi attacks said on Thursday.

Representative Trey Gowdy, chairman of the Benghazi Select Committee, told Reuters these included aides to Clinton and perhaps “aides to aides.”

Mar 18, 2015

U.S. House leaders pursue lasting fix for doctors’ Medicare pay

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. House Speaker John Boehner and Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi are pursuing a bipartisan deal to spare physicians from recurring Medicare pay cuts, but the two leaders face a familiar conundrum: how to pay for it.

Hundreds of thousands of doctors who participate in traditional Medicare face a 21 percent cut in their reimbursements on April 1. The cut is part of a 1990s cost-saving initiative for the government healthcare program, which today serves 54 million elderly and disabled people.

Mar 17, 2015

Republican congressman with ‘Downton Abbey’ office resigns

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Representative Aaron Schock, a Republican from Illinois whose Downton Abbey-styled office launched a series of media reports questioning his use of taxpayer dollars, announced on Tuesday that he is resigning from Congress.

The 33-year-old congressman from Peoria, Illinois had been a rising star in House Republican circles since he was elected in 2008. But he said in a statement that he was stepping down “with a heavy heart.”

Mar 17, 2015

Attorney general candidate Lynch faces tough test in U.S. Senate

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s choice of Loretta Lynch to be the next top U.S. law enforcement official is ensnared in infighting over abortion and immigration policy and, if that can be overcome, a tight vote once her nomination arrives before the Senate.

Congressional vote counters on Tuesday were speculating on the possibility of a 50-50 Senate tie, which would result in her confirmation as attorney general, assuming Democratic Vice President Joe Biden broke the deadlock by voting for her.

Mar 4, 2015

Senate fails to override Obama’s veto of Keystone XL approval

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate failed on Wednesday to override President Barack Obama’s veto of legislation approving the Keystone XL oil pipeline, leaving the controversial project to await an administration decision on whether to permit or deny it.

The Senate mustered just 62 votes in favor of overriding the veto, short of the two-thirds needed. Thirty-seven senators voted to sustain Obama’s veto. The Senate action means the House of Representatives will not vote on override.

Feb 25, 2015

Senate Republican offers plan to avert security funding crisis

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Senate leaders took a tentative step on Tuesday that could avert a partial shutdown of the Department of Homeland Security, but it was unclear if House Speaker John Boehner and restive conservatives would support a new concession to Democrats.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he was willing to hold a vote on a Homeland Security funding bill that is free of provisions blocking President Barack Obama’s immigration actions, if Democrats agree to vote on a stand-alone bill that halts Obama’s November immigration order.

Feb 24, 2015

U.S. conservatives urge Boehner to hold firm on immigration

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Conservative Republicans urged House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner not to capitulate in a fight with Democrats over President Barack Obama’s immigration policy that threatens a partial Homeland Security shutdown later this week.

The conservative lawmakers, led by Representative Jeff Duncan, circulated a letter to Boehner and other House leaders telling them to hold the line in opposing Obama’s executive actions shielding millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation, a Duncan aide said on Tuesday.

Feb 24, 2015

Short-term U.S. security funding idea gains ground in Senate

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A short-term funding extension for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security gained ground on Monday among Senate Republicans as a possible option to deal with a stalled spending bill and a Friday deadline looming for a partial shutdown of the agency.

The Senate failed for a fourth time to advance a $39.7 billion bill to fund the agency that includes Republican-authored provisions to block President Barack Obama’s recent immigration orders.

Feb 13, 2015

Choices dwindle for U.S. Republicans in security, immigration fight

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Congressional Republicans are running
out of options to pass a Homeland Security funding bill that
blocks President Barack Obama’s immigration orders, raising the
threat of another showdown that could idle parts of a key
government agency.

With a Feb. 27 deadline looming, Republican House and Senate
leaders have been unable to agree on a strategy to extend the
spending authority of the agency charged with securing U.S.
borders, airports and coastal waters.