congressional correspondent
Thomas's Feed
May 13, 2013

Obama slams IRS actions, calls Benghazi probe a ‘sideshow’

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama on Monday called the targeting of conservative groups by U.S. tax officials “outrageous” and said that any Internal Revenue Service employees involved would be held accountable.

Obama’s comments, during a news conference with visiting British Prime Minister David Cameron, marked the first time the president had spoken publicly about the IRS scandal.

May 13, 2013

Obama calls IRS actions outrageous, seeks to neutralize crises

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama sought on Monday to neutralize two crises that threatened his second term agenda, calling the apparent targeting of conservative groups by tax officials “outrageous” and an uproar over his response to American deaths in Libya a “sideshow.”

At a news conference with visiting British Prime Minister David Cameron, Obama tried to put his stamp on the two issues, which are overshadowing other policy priorities just months after he took the oath of office.

May 10, 2013

U.S. IRS singling out of ‘Tea Party’ being investigated

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – An investigation of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service was launched on Friday after a senior IRS official publicly apologized for subjecting conservative political groups to “inappropriate” scrutiny.

In a practice that drew complaints during the 2012 election campaign, groups with the words “Tea Party” or “patriots” in their names were flagged for closer IRS review when they applied to the agency for tax-exempt status.

May 10, 2013

IRS’ scrutiny of ‘Tea Party’ under investigation

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Tax authorities’ handling of applications for tax-exempt status from conservative political groups was under investigation, the White House said Friday after an IRS official apologized for “inappropriate” scrutiny of groups with “Tea Party” in their names.

“What we know of this is of concern and we certainly find the actions taken, as reported, to be inappropriate,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said at a briefing.

May 10, 2013

Immigration bill backers thwart conservative amendments

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A landmark bill backed by U.S. President Barack Obama to overhaul the nation’s immigration system survived unscathed on Thursday during the first day of consideration by a divided Senate Judiciary Committee.

On bipartisan votes, the panel rejected conservatives’ attempts to thwart implementation of a centerpiece of the bill – a pathway to U.S. citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants.

May 10, 2013

U.S. immigration bill backers thwart conservative amendments

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A landmark bill backed by U.S. President Barack Obama to overhaul the nation’s immigration system survived unscathed on Thursday during the first day of consideration by a divided Senate Judiciary Committee.

On bipartisan votes, the panel rejected conservatives’ attempts to thwart implementation of a centerpiece of the bill – a pathway to U.S. citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants.

May 9, 2013

Immigration bill passes first early test in U.S. Senate

WASHINGTON, May 9 (Reuters) – In the first legislative test
for the U.S. Senate’s bipartisan immigration bill, the Judiciary
Committee rejected a Republican attempt to significantly delay
the legalization process for 11 million undocumented immigrants,
a central focus of the bill.

Only the two Republican co-authors of the bill, Senators
Jeff Flake of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina,
voted with the panel’s Democrats to defeat the Republican plan
on a 12-6 vote.

May 9, 2013

U.S. Senate panel launches crucial debate over immigration bill

WASHINGTON, May 9 (Reuters) – A U.S. Senate committee on
Thursday launched a weeks-long effort to pass a comprehensive
immigration bill with a warning from the panel’s top Republican
that he would make the process as long and “arduous” as
possible.

“I plan to ask many questions throughout this process,” Iowa
Senator Charles Grassley warned the Democratic-controlled Senate
Judiciary Committee. “I want to know how the bill doesn’t repeat
the mistakes of the past.” Grassley, in a statement, promised an
“arduous” and “robust” debate.

May 8, 2013

Republicans defy White House veto threat, pass workplace law

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Republican-led House of Representatives passed a bill on Wednesday to give workers more time off – rejecting criticism from the White House, unions, women’s groups and others that the measure is a sham that would force more work for less pay.

Backed by business, the bill is part of an effort by budget-slashing Republicans to project a kinder and gentler image, particularly with women and working families.

May 7, 2013

Gay rights amendment offered to immigration bill in Congress

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy on Tuesday introduced a gay rights amendment to the Senate’s immigration bill, prompting one of the measure’s Republican sponsors to repeat his prediction that it would sink the legislation.

“It’ll kill the bill” if it is included in the legislation, Florida Senator Marco Rubio said in a brief interview. “There is a coalition of groups who are supporting immigration reform who will not support it if that’s in there.”

    • About Thomas

      "Thomas Ferraro joined Reuters in 1998; he has helped cover a number of presidential campaigns and is a veteran of Capitol Hill where he has seen Democratic and Republican majorities rise and fall. He has also covered a number of Supreme Court confirmation battles, including those of four nominees now on the highest U.S. court."
    • Follow Thomas