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Mar 5, 2014

Democrats in U.S. Senate block Obama civil rights lawyer

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Several of President Barack Obama’s Democrats in the U.S. Senate joined Republicans on Wednesday to block his nominee to a top Justice Department job after complaints that the lawyer, Debo Adegbile, had once helped represent a convicted “cop killer.”

Adegbile, a former director at the Legal Defense Fund of the civil rights group NAACP, had been nominated to head the Justice Department’s civil rights division.

Mar 5, 2014

Flood insurance bill wins U.S. House passage

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. House of Representatives, in a rare act of bipartisanship, overwhelmingly passed a bill on Tuesday to protect millions of American homeowners and businesses from dramatic increases in their flood insurance premiums.

On a vote of 306-91, the Republican-led House sent the measure – the Homeowners Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014 – to the Democratic-led Senate for likely final approval.

Feb 27, 2014

Republican Cruz puts Clinton odds of White House win at 40 percent

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Republican U.S. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, a Tea Party favorite seen as a potential 2016 presidential contender, on Thursday put Democrat Hillary Clinton’s chances of winning the White House at 40 percent.

“The media thinks she is unstoppable, but they also thought she was unstoppable in the 2008 Democratic primary,” which Barack Obama won en route to the White House, Cruz said of the former secretary of state and wife of two-term U.S. President Bill Clinton.

Feb 15, 2014

Biden acknowledges U.S. Democratic concerns on trade agenda

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Vice President Joe Biden on Friday acknowledged concerns by fellow Democrats, including the top two in Congress, about President Barack Obama’s free-trade agenda but defended the U.S. pursuit of a proposed pan-Pacific trade pact.

Biden met behind closed doors with House of Representatives Democrats as they wrapped up a three-day retreat in Cambridge, Maryland, saying he understands the political reality of their misgivings on free trade, according to a senior House Democratic aide who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Feb 14, 2014

Obama seeks to allay Democrats’ fears on Obamacare

, Feb 14 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama
sought on Friday to ease strains with his Democratic allies in
the U.S. Congress, who are fearful they could face election
consequences from the botched rollout of the president’s
signature healthcare law known as “Obamacare.”

Speaking to House of Representatives Democrats during their
three-day retreat, Obama cited an increase in the number of
people signing up for insurance coverage under Obamacare as
evidence that the law’s implementation was going more smoothly
after a troubled start.

Feb 14, 2014

Obama seeks to ease election-year strains with Democrats

, Feb 14 (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack
Obama and fellow Democrats in the House of Representatives face
a key question when they meet on Friday, Valentine’s Day: how
much love do they dare show each other before the November

Obama will address House Democrats on the final day of their
three-day retreat in this waterfront town, which has lawmakers
buzzing about policy and politics and edgy about their Election
Day chances.

Feb 13, 2014

Democrats seek to force Republicans to vote on U.S. minimum wage

CAMBRIDGE, Maryland (Reuters) – Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives unveiled plans on Thursday to try to force Republicans to move on President Barack Obama’s stalled bid to raise the federal minimum wage.

Democratic leaders said they would circulate a “discharge petition,” which, if signed by half of the House’s 435 members, would require Republicans to bring the measure up for a vote.

Feb 6, 2014

US Senate Republicans block new bid to restore jobless benefits

WASHINGTON, Feb 6 (Reuters) – U.S. Senate Republicans on
Thursday blocked a new bid by Democrats to restore long-term
unemployment benefits for 1.7 million Americans while also
making millionaires ineligible for such emergency assistance.

On a mostly party-line vote of 58-40, Democrats fell short
of the needed 60 to clear a Republican procedural hurdle against
a proposed three-month, retroactive extension of the relief that
includes a way to fully cover the $6.4 billion cost.

Feb 5, 2014

Obama vows to help Democrats in 2014 in third day of talks

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama spent part of a third straight day on Wednesday talking to congressional Democrats about an agenda for the year that party leaders hope will help them make gains or limit losses in November elections.

Obama trooped over to the Washington Nationals baseball stadium for a private session with Senate Democrats in a meeting room in a section of the stadium behind home plate. Former President Bill Clinton also addressed the group.

Feb 4, 2014

US Senate showdown vote set to extend unemployment benefits

WASHINGTON, Feb 4 (Reuters) – U.S. Senate Democrats on
Tuesday set up a showdown vote with Republicans on a new bill to
extend long-term unemployment benefits for 1.7 million Americans
while making millionaires ineligible for such relief.

Democrats hold the Senate, 55-45, but may have difficulty
mustering the 60 votes that will be needed on Thursday to clear
a Republican procedural hurdle.

    • 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."
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