Senate and House Announce Plans To End Crises

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Carolyn Kaster / AP

Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., walks to the Senate floor after agreeing to the framework of a deal to avoid default and reopen the government.

Updated at 4:10 p.m.

Senate leaders announced a bipartisan deal Wednesday to reopen government and raise the debt ceiling, moving the country closer to ending weeks of brinkmanship over Obamacare, federal spending and debt. Hours later, Speaker John Boehner met with his caucus to announce that he would allow a vote on the Senate package.

“This is not a time for pointing fingers or blame. This is a time for reconciliation,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said in announcing the agreement, which would reopen the government and extend the debt ceiling through early next year. The bill will also appoint senators to work on a budget agreement over the next two months, in the hopes of avoiding another standoff in 2014.

Reid was followed by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who said Republicans would continue to fight to repeal President Barack Obama’s health care reform law, but there would be no victory this week. “For today, the relief we hope for is to reopen the government, avoid default and protect the historic cuts we achieved under the budget control act,” McConnell said.

In a written statement, Boehner echoed this message. “Blocking the bipartisan agreement reached today by the members of the Senate will not be a tactic for us,” he said.

A vote on the measure is expected later Wednesday.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Obama “applauds” the deal, and encouraged both chambers of Congress to expeditiously pass the legislation. But even with an agreement that represents an almost total victory for Democrats, Carney asserted, “there are no winners here,” given the negative effects of the shutdown.

As the Senate gaveled to order, House Republicans gathered to discuss their path forward. “Looks like we’ll eat the Reid-McConnell deal,” one House GOP source told TIME. “It’ll rely on Democratic votes.”

“The House has fought with everything it has to convince the president of the United States to engage in bipartisan negotiations aimed at addressing our country’s debt and providing fairness for the American people under ObamaCare,” Boehner said in the afternoon statement. “That fight will continue.”

Multiple Republican senators, including Kentucky’s Rand Paul, said they expect the Senate plan to pass with a strong majority of Republican votes. Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, one of the original proponents of the failed plan to shut down the government to defund Obamacare, said he would not vote for the deal, but would also not try to block the Senate from moving forward.

The emerging agreement isn’t sitting well with some Republicans. Sen. Lindsay Graham, who has long argued for a grand bargain to address long-term fiscal issues, called it a “joke. “We took some breadcrumbs and left the whole meal on the table,” he said.

Graham continued to criticize the tactics the House Republicans have behaved over recent weeks. “The way we’re behaving and the path we’ve taken over the past couple of weeks leads to a marginalized party in the eyes of the American people,” he said. “It has been the best two weeks for the Democratic Party in recent times because they were out of the spotlight and didn’t have to showcase their ideas.”

Sen. Kelly Ayotte expressed hope that more conservative colleagues will not repeat their mistakes of the last month. “We’ve been asking from the beginning how does this end, how do you achieve what you’re purporting to achieve on defunding Obamacare,” she said. “And I never got an answer to that. I don’t think there still is an answer to that. So if we have learned nothing else from this whole exercise I hope we learn that we shouldn’t get behind a strategy that cannot succeed.”

According to a Senate Republican leadership aide, under the agreement, the government would be funded through Jan. 15, 2014 unless a budget agreement is reached sooner, while the debt limit would be raised through Feb. 7. The extraordinary accounting measures used to keep the government under the borrowing cap would not be prohibited under the deal. An anti-fraud measure will be added to Obamacare, requiring income verification for those receiving subsidies to purchase insurance under the law.

With reporting by Alex Rogers and Alex Altman/Washington and Noah Rayman/New York

79 comments
MrTemecula
MrTemecula

Tea party Gettysburg. Tea party Waterloo. Tea party Stalingrad. Whatever you want to call it, this has been a disaster for the tea party faction. The Republican Party went to the brink and then blinked...like everybody said they would. The new deal has language that basically gives Obama the right to raise the debt limit next year until after the election, so the tea party has loses their hostage for a year. The tea party can close the government again, but the tea party and Boehner has been burned so badly it will not happen. Boehner, strangely enough, is safe until the 2014 election. Hopefully, America remembers how radical the Republicans have become and more moderates are elected and a tea party member never becomes Speaker. God help us if that would ever happen.

sridhar.sid
sridhar.sid

So polarized is the US, so dysfunctional the Congress and so dismayed are people around the world that US has lost all rights to be called a Super Power! A Country, who has managed to get the economy growing,deal with a mamoth Banking crisis, is admired around the world but petty Tea Partiers will still find reason to spoil it all. It is very hard to imagine any good that has come out this silly impasse, with small minded people parading Washington, merely grandstanding on TV everyday. What a sad state of affairs!!

JohnDahodi
JohnDahodi

KAMIKAZE BY THE GOP? In the last 10 days uncivilized, undemocratic and senseless GOP drama lead by few hardcore Conservative and tea-party members of Republican party has spoiled the name, reputation and prestige of the entire Republican party. John Boehner and his leadership found to be childish, unpatriotic and un-American. He should resign soon from the speaker position and allow other able hands and mature mind take it over his job. In this childish game; Obama did well; keeping his head and mind cool and allowed the grumpy kids to play their own game crying, shouting and yelling to each other without any purpose. Looks like; the Republican party is seating on the cliff and few unorganized, immature and empty headed kids are pushing it in to the deep canyon. I read the writing on the wall "GOP is RIP here".   

grape_crush
grape_crush

> “The House has fought with everything it has to convince the president of the United States to engage in bipartisan negotiations aimed at addressing our country’s debt and providing fairness for the American people under ObamaCare,” Boehner said in the afternoon statement. “That fight will continue.”

Let's unpack that a bit.

> The House has fought with everything it has...

No,  They tried every tactic possible, no matter how underhanded or ill-sprited, to coerce their opposition into accepting legislation they have repeatedly failed to pass.  There is nothing heroic in that.

> ...to convince the president of the United States to engage in bipartisan negotiations...

Hypocritical, in that the House GOP has repeatedly rebuffed attempts at bipartisan negotiations, reneged on deals made, and otherwise have not operated in good faith...fabricating unnecessary crises in order to advance an ideological agenda that they cannot implement otherwise. There is nothing heroic in that.

> ...aimed at addressing our country’s debt and providing fairness for the American people under ObamaCare.

Neither of these reasons were the ones given at the outset when the House GOP chose to shutdown the government and threaten the validity of the nation's credit. These were ambiguous fallback ideas offered in an attempt to deflect blame and soften the negative reaction to their legislative hostage-taking. There is nothing heroic in any of that.

“That fight will continue.”

So we should be expecting more brinksmanship from the GOP, no matter the consequences. There is nothing heroic in that.

tommyudo
tommyudo

Some members of the GOP are already crying and scapegaoting the MSM for distorting their "message." These poor souls certainly live in a parallel reality. Anyone who runs for the House and Senate should be required to take an IQ test (only 120 and above need apply) along with a saliva test.

DapimpOfdayear
DapimpOfdayear

Republicans lose again.  Next, will be there seats in Congress - in the non-gerrymandered districts of course.

DavidStrayer
DavidStrayer

What is truly amazing is that there are any grown-ups left in the Republican party.  

The GOP has demonstrated unequivocally and for all the world to see that the political points it wishes to make are more important than the welfare of the country.  The fact that cooler heads eventually prevailed doesn't change the dynamic or the import of it.

More importantly, it should be emphasized here that these events underscore the fact that the Republican party is committed to suffocating Obamacare in its cradle.  They are terrified that it will succeed in covering all Americans for health care, that it will not raise health care costs appreciably and that it will be popular.  

Their claim to be concerned about the fiscal impact of Obamacare are ludicrous.  They didn't care about the fiscal impact of GOP-driven huge tax cuts, two ineptly managed (at least) wars and a major recession that was almost a depression.  They certainly don't care about the economics of Obamacare.

But it provides them with a fig leaf so that they can try to disguise the vacuity of their program.  The Republicans simply have nothing to offer the country.  Their only goal is to be against whatever the Democrats are for.  They wish to help only the very, very wealthiest of Americans and don't care discernibly about anyone else.  They have no plan, no principles (amply demonstrated during this fight) and no interest in the country's wellbeing (also amply demonstrated in this fight.

An effective Obamacare doesn't free the GOP to pursue other issues.  Rather, it strips the Republicans bare of their facade so all Americans can see the fact that they have nothing, will give the country nothing and can offer nothing:

The Republicans have no clothes.

dwol001
dwol001

Its about time we had some adults in Washington made the Tea Party brats realize they are hurting the "common man" whom they profess to represent.  I just hope Speaker Boehner can reign in everyone and get a vote on the floor.

I was watching the Senate earlier on C-Span and they were doing was slapping each other on the back.  Geez just get the stupid vote over and send to the Twilight Zone called the House so they can finally end this dog and pony show of the Tea Party.

grape_crush
grape_crush

Meh. I'll wait until the bill actually passes the House before getting too excited. Not that I was getting excited in the first place.

My takeaway at this moment is that the deal being made now could have been made at any time over the past months  - should have been made, on terms that might have been more favorable to the Right - if the fringe conservatives holding the reins in Congress were more interested in making government work instead of not work.

(slow golf clap)

jmac
jmac

There are so many Quotes of the Day.  It's like being in a candy store:

Ann Coulter:   The problem is we have hucksters, shysters, and people ripping off the Republican Party for their own self-aggrandizement, for their own egos, to make money,” (appearing  on Hannity to hawk her latest book).

Hugh Hewitt:   Blaming Ted Cruz for the collapse of coherence of House GOP is like blaming the weatherman for the hurricane he accurately predicted.

DeweySayenoff
DeweySayenoff

Given the abysmal IQ of the few in the House who have held the country hostage to their demands, I actually expect the House to block this - again.  At the very least, the ones who were willing to put a gun to the head of the world will continue to vote against it.  The grand-standers who went along with them and are beginning to get the clue that all they did was hurt themselves will spin the "we did it because it as good for the country" line to their constituents, who, by now, are about ready to lynch them.

And exactly who's going to pay the bill, assuming the situation is actually resolved?  This shut down cost us billions of unallocated (as in EXTRA) tax money and accomplished nothing except to put the public opinion of the rightists somewhere above an intestinal parasite and below pond scum.  But while I'm fine with that, the problem is that all it leaves us with as a choice is the left and that's not a viable option either.

We have to vote out everyone in Congress - left and right.  It's been amply proven that extremes don't work together.  Centrists, moderates - yeah, they don't have sexy, exciting, militant-sounding sound bites.  They don't get the blood stirring like "NO COMPROMISE" or "STAND YOUR GROUND" or other simple-minded, simplistic and patently unworkable slogans used by leftists and rightists.  And unlike the leftists and rightists, they just do things - like their jobs - the way they're supposed to be done.  

This "compromise" isn't a compromise.  It isn't a solution.  The problem still exists.  The job isn't done.  And it's time we got rid of the idiots in congress and elected people who are actually willing to do their jobs in a way that doesn't involve something looking more like a hostage negotiation than running a government.

AlphaJuliette
AlphaJuliette

At last!  A reasonable agreement.

I very much like the idea of a budget panel to actually discuss and agree on a budget.  They have more than enough time to do that.  THIS is where they can put everything on the table, including entitlements & Obamacare, and come up with a plan. This is their opportunity to get it right.

I see where the Heritage Action for America was saying that yesterday's proposal in the House wasn't conservative enough.  I'm sure they would say the same about a Bowles/Simpson plan.  SO, who knows how the House Tee Pee'ers will react to a considered plan from the Senate in two months should there be an agreement.  Stay tuned.

tommyudo
tommyudo

So, now Obama, Reid,  Pelosi, Boehner (or whoever succeeds him), McConnell, Ryan, et.al, can all get together and figure out just how deep they are going to cut the social safety net programs and achieve their Grand Bargain. The whole GOP plan since the 1980s has been to gut and decimate everything the Middle Class holds dear, and they will be ably assisted by a passel of corporate Dems.

romerjt
romerjt

Will the GOP pull this again in Feb.?  This has been bad for the GOP but probably not as bad as it should be but bad enough so everyone is really tired of listening to it.  Will they risk the "Oh no, not again" response for the American public?  Probably, only probably not, but Obama better get that website fixed real fast, no victory lap until that works.

bobcn
bobcn

" “This is not a time for pointing fingers or blame. This is a time for reconciliation,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid."

Ok.  I'll wait until tomorrow to point fingers and blame.

j45ashton
j45ashton

I just heard Newt Gingrich on CNN crying about President Obama being so mean.  Good God.  These Republicans.  It's all about them.

Libtards-UNITE
Libtards-UNITE

@MrTemecula They blinked because obviously Obama and the Dems could care less if the country went into the financial toilet...

Poor people and poor illegal immigrants have been voting Democrat for 50 years.  And they are all still poor.

Pollopa
Pollopa

It'll pass.  The deal between the old dog GOP and the Dems was to ensure Boehner had the necessary cover. You just won't see that written up in the CR.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@grape_crush well grape man you have a good point and yes they could have made the deal a long time ago, but as I have stated it is a game to them of ego and posture, that was taken to the 11th hour.

Paul,nnto
Paul,nnto

Your points are solid but I would add that this is the first time in 5 years the President and the Dems didn't deal against themselves.

Fluke or a change? We'll know soon enough.

Paul,nnto
Paul,nnto

That Coulter one is pretty good. 

At least she smiles as she picks their pockets.  And saying it on FNC to Hannity is icing on the cake.

dwol001
dwol001

@DeweySayenoff I agree about voting the losers out of the House and Senate, if this latest escapade of the Republican's hasn't made people realize they need to get out and vote, I don't know what will.  I am a Republican and I pray Mitch McConnell looses his Senate race.  It would be nice if the party would rebel against Speaker Boehner like they did against Speaker Gingrich and make the radicals in the House loose control so common sense can prevail.

I know working the opposition if unheard of in Washington right now, but ff anything is ever going to be done, cooperation is desperately need right now.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@DeweySayenoff The house will not block it this time dewey, this is the bewitching hour, when there game for now is done. Feb you will be another song and dance. as I have stated and predicted it would end today and it was and is an ego, posturing game. It will be the demise of JB and he will go down in history as the worst speaker of all time.

tom.litton
tom.litton

@AlphaJuliette I wouldn't get your hopes up.  None of the other committees, negotiations, etc, produced a budget, and it's more or less all the same people as before.  

I fully expect the committee to fail on the same points as before:  taxes vs entitlement cuts.

tommyudo
tommyudo

@AlphaJuliette 


Some more centrist twaddle. 

That's the ticket - a panel  to decimate the social safety net. I have a better plan - hands off SS , get rid of the insurance and pharma corp handout that is Obamacare, and make Medicare for everyone. Of course, it will never fly since the Dems and GOP are the left and right arm of the same corporate behemoth that continues to make the 99% pay the price. Why is it that the old, the poor, the minimum wage earner, and the struggling Middle Class are always the ones that have to take the ax in the neck? There is a ton of dough in this country in the hands of a few who get the tax write offs and subsidies. Start paying your fair share guys. Otherwise it may take 10, 20 or maybe 40 years, but eventually the 99% will take it from you involuntarily.



Openminded1
Openminded1

@mantisdragon91 Well that is a sure sign of trouble and fear for GOP. does anyone really listen to Patty other the very right wing holy rollers?

Paul,nnto
Paul,nnto

  That was the concern going into the shutdown. Didn't happen.

Maybe the worm has turned a little. No question history gives us plenty to be worried about.

DonGettys
DonGettys

@romerjt A month before primary elections? Next year is a different story.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@bobcn that is what i like about you Wc, your sense of humor , a lot like mine, that is healthy.

jsfox
jsfox

@JillKennedy Well not to make too fine a point of it, but Republicans and the Tea Party policies will be why Republicans may never win the Presidency again.

Paul,nnto
Paul,nnto

Newton complaining about someone being mean?

What's his next complaint? Complaining about people marrying multiple times?

tommyudo
tommyudo

@AlphaJuliette 


Just hoping won't do it. The Dems have to organize for 2014 the way they did for 2008 and 2012, meaning getting more of the elderly poor and college students to the polls. Some of the  GOP poll watchers may need their heads knocked together.

grape_crush
grape_crush

@Paul,nnto> this is the first time in 5 years the President and the Dems didn't deal against themselves.

This.

We get much different results if we don't have to negotiate with the Joe Lieberman Democrats before having to deal with the GOP. An uncharacteristic display of party unity on the part of the Dems.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@Paul,nnto She is smart, and laughs all the way to the bank, and i think that is all she cares about. capitalism is it not wonderful.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@dwol001 @DeweySayenoff have no fear about JB he is coming to the end of his political career, he go off and write a book and give lectures soon, to whom ever may listen or read.

shepherdwong
shepherdwong

@tom.litton  "...taxes vs entitlement cuts."

And we know that Republicans will never budge on tax increases. The interesting argument in this neighborhood has always been whether the Dems have ever been serious about real cuts in entitlements. After all, they can always pretend to be. They know that the Republicans will never budge on tax increases.

AlphaJuliette
AlphaJuliette

@tommyudo Centrism is what we need more of Tommyudo.  Cooperation, moderation, and people willing to sit and have an actual (as in real) conversation.  Extremism NEVER works and is NEVER good for anybody.  We have been shown that in spades in this latest manufactured crisis.

As far as your other points about the middle class and how We the People keep taking it in the shorts, I agree.  What you are talking about is the wealth inequality that exists in this country.  Unless the 1%'ers are compelled one way or the other to share the wealth it won't be good for anyone.  That's an extremism all it's own.

shepherdwong
shepherdwong

@jsfox  The trouble is, they've shown they can do plenty of damage by merely holding the lower house of Congress and numerous state governments.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@Paul,nnto He has only been married 3or 4 times, I knew a guy that was married 14 times his wives hate him so much, they never demanded child support or alimony. Boy did he get off lucky.

shepherdwong
shepherdwong

@tommyudo "Just hoping won't do it. The Dems have to organize for 2014 the way they did for 2008 and 2012..."

And we must all hold the Beltway press to account for their portrayal of the Republicans. They were shamed into doing so this time by their customers and by the very outrageousness of the Republicans' behavior. No more false equivalency and pretense that the GOP is a responsible governing body.

shepherdwong
shepherdwong

@AlphaJuliette "Unless the 1%'ers are compelled one way or the other to share the wealth it won't be good for anyone."

The point is, they won't be compelled to do so via centrism. They invented centrism to use as a foil against progressivism. You know, that policies that gave us progressive taxation, balanced budgets, an equitable share of wealth for the workers who do the work, an effective infrastructure and a reasonable social safety net during the greatest period of prosperity this country has ever seen, that you apparently find too "extreme."

tommyudo
tommyudo

@AlphaJuliette


The Dems and the GOP , as currently constituted in this highly imperfect system of governance, are the left and right arm of the same 1% corporate behemoth, so any negotiating is essentially negotiating with oneself. We are at a point where "business as usual" won't pick us up out of the morass we have been in since circa 1980. Maybe you haven't been paying attention, but wages have stagnated, pensions and benefits cuts, jobs offshored, unions down to less than 5% of the work force,and the middle class is slowly been decimated all  the while your friendly pols have negotiated. The GOP is largely responsible along with Dem acquiescence in this "to get along, go along" environment. We are a nation of  assorted service works, and retail clerks, with low wages and less and less benefits. 

Sorry, there should be NO negotiation and cooperation with the Paul Ryans of the world. They are the enemy.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@Paul,nnto Ah Teddy C, it may take the supreme court to decide if he can be President or not.. But i would not worry i do not see him getting to far.

Paul,nnto
Paul,nnto

And, currently, where they can do the most damage-the Supreme Court.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@MementoMori @Openminded1 @NP042 @j45ashton Ps; you are not trying to win favor with your love interest are you? do you show he or she your post, to impress whom ever with your romantic ideal of life and your quasi intellect . you would not do that would you mori? 

Openminded1
Openminded1

@MementoMori @Openminded1 @NP042 @j45ashton well i doubt you been a man longer. and i grew up in Vietnam at age 18 and id not leave there on till i was almost 20. You grow up fast there. but you also learn that life is short and to try to make the most of it. after that 30 years on the streets as a cop keeps you in the real world not your  world of fantasy and PC. I have  lived a full life and at age 63 i do not mince words, but i will asure you i have been loved by women and family and friends , because I can laugh even at myself. i feel sorry for your boring life.

MementoMori
MementoMori

@Openminded1 @MementoMori @NP042 @j45ashton  "have always been respectful to there face"

Ever think that if you can't say it to her face, then maybe you shouldn't be saying it? 

Maybe I've just been a man longer than you - long enough to know that respect doesn't stop when no one is looking, nor do I pretend that such disrespect is "all in good fun". 

But then again, it takes longer for some folks to grow up than others.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@MementoMori @Openminded1 @NP042 @j45ashton ps: by the way is that your latest ex-ray, you are not looking to good. Maybe you need to see a different doc for a second opinion. While you are there see if he  or she can help you get a sense of humor.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@MementoMori @Openminded1 @NP042 @j45ashton Oh Mori you have no sense of humor , i love women and have always been respectful to there face, i do not even use profanity in there presence. I have been happy in marriage for 35 years.  I think its my sense of humor and rugged good looks that has kept her around. not to mention having to sexy sides, half Italian and half black a women could not ask for more. lighten up Mori.

MementoMori
MementoMori

@Openminded1 @NP042 @j45ashton

"I do like Palins ass and rack but that makes me a man and human not a tea party member ."

No, that makes you a misogynist. A man treats a woman with respect.

Openminded1
Openminded1

@NP042 @Openminded1 @j45ashton Why you do not believe I am an independent?  I think I have proved that on a few post, I have no reason not to admit which road I take. I am not a bleeding heart liberal, but I am also not a hard line conservative either. And I can not stand TC. I do like Palins ass and rack but that makes me a man and human not a tea party member .