Mitch McConnell on allowing debt-ceiling vote: "I had to do what's best for the country"
February 15th, 2014
06:49 PM ET
6 months ago

Mitch McConnell on allowing debt-ceiling vote: "I had to do what's best for the country"

Washington (CNN) – Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, on Friday defended his decision back home in Kentucky to join Democrats in a vote to clear a filibuster hurdle that allowed a vote to raise the debt ceiling.

"My job is to protect the country when I can and to step up and lead on those occasions when it's required. That's what I did," he said at a campaign appearance in Louisville.

McConnell was one of 12 Republican senators to join Democrats on Tuesday in voting to end debate on the debt-ceiling bill that will extend the federal debt limit for a year, a move his opponents have been quick to criticize him for.

President Obama signed the bill into law Saturday in California, the White House said in a statement.
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Filed under: Debt • Mitch McConnell
Senate debt ceiling vote protocol sparks controversy
February 13th, 2014
10:46 PM ET
7 months ago

Senate debt ceiling vote protocol sparks controversy

(CNN) - As votes were tallied Wednesday in a dramatic Senate vote to move ahead with the debt ceiling bill, some senators' votes were not read aloud by the clerks, breaking from the usual protocol of disclosing each senator's vote in real time.

A spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Senate clerks were asked not to read the names, so Republicans could feel more free to vote or change their votes as some GOP leaders sought to bring enough senators on board to end Sen. Ted Cruz’s filibuster that threatened to lead to a politically damaging fight over raising the debt limit.
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Filed under: Debt • Senate
February 13th, 2014
08:19 AM ET
7 months ago

Senator criticizes debt ceiling filibuster, then votes to filibuster

Washington (CNN) – Republican Sen. Dean Heller voted to filibuster the bill to raise the debt ceiling Wednesday, after telling CNN the night before that he did not support fellow Sen. Ted Cruz’s plan to do the same.

“Well, I don't think it's right, because at the end of the day, we're going to pass a clean debt ceiling increase, with Ted or without Ted's support, with my support or without my support,” Heller told Van Jones on CNN’s “Crossfire” Tuesday night.

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Filed under: Crossfire • Dean Heller • Debt • Nevada
Senate passes debt-ceiling plan in blow to conservatives
February 12th, 2014
03:27 PM ET
7 months ago

Senate passes debt-ceiling plan in blow to conservatives

Washington (CNN) – The Senate voted Wednesday to avert at least one chronic Washington political crisis for at least a year.

With a snowstorm bearing down on the capital, it approved a House-passed measure that allows the government to borrow more money to pay its bills through March 2015.

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Filed under: Congress • Debt
House votes to restore military pensions
February 11th, 2014
03:00 PM ET
7 months ago

House votes to restore military pensions

Washington (CNNMoney) - The House on Tuesday passed a bill to restore pension increases for some 750,000 military retirees.

The House voted 326 to 90 to undo cuts to cost-of-living hikes for military pensions for all current retirees and anyone who enlisted before Jan. 1. The Senate is expected to vote Wednesday.

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Filed under: Budget • Debt • Military
Sources: House Republicans drop bid to tie other issues to debt ceiling
February 11th, 2014
09:55 AM ET
7 months ago

Sources: House Republicans drop bid to tie other issues to debt ceiling

Washington (CNN) – House Republican leaders have given up efforts to link other issues to raising the federal borrowing limit and will bring up a "clean" debt ceiling measure as soon as Wednesday, GOP sources told CNN Tuesday.

The issue had threatened more congressional gridlock, as President Barack Obama and Democrats rejected any negotiations over the need to increase how much the government can borrow to pay its bills.

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Filed under: Congress • Debt • House
CNN/ORC Poll: Debt Ceiling blame game
February 3rd, 2014
04:34 PM ET
7 months ago

CNN/ORC Poll: Debt Ceiling blame game

Washington (CNN) - More Americans would blame Republicans in Congress than President Barack Obama if the nation's debt ceiling is not raised, according to a new national poll.

The release of the CNN/ORC International survey on Monday came as Treasury Secretary Jack Lew issued yet another public warning to Congress to act quickly to extend the nation's borrowing authority.
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Filed under: CNN poll • Congress • Debt • President Obama
Republicans up ante, say they want debt ceiling conditions
January 31st, 2014
01:10 PM ET
7 months ago

Republicans up ante, say they want debt ceiling conditions

(CNN) – House Republicans agreed Friday that they would demand conditions for raising the nation's debt ceiling, according to several sources who attended a closed-door discussion at the annual GOP strategy retreat in Cambridge, Maryland.

Extending U.S. borrowing in the early part of this year is the next potential confrontation on fiscal policy with Democrats and President Barack Obama, who has said he would not negotiate over the issue.
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Filed under: Congress • Debt • Republicans
Another showdown in D.C. on the horizon? Yup.
January 26th, 2014
11:58 AM ET
7 months ago

Another showdown in D.C. on the horizon? Yup.

Washington (CNN) – It was just over a month ago that lawmakers on Capitol Hill passed a bipartisan budget and members were singing "Kumbaya."

Those days are over.
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Filed under: Dan Pfeiffer • Debt • Mitch McConnell
January 5th, 2014
07:13 PM ET
8 months ago

5 tests for kumbaya on Capitol Hill

Washington (CNN) - 2013 ended with Congress reaching a deal on funding the government without all the end-of-the-year drama that we've come to expect. Democrats and Republicans defied the recent all-or-nothing gamesmanship and brokered a budget deal before its deadline, prompting speculation that maybe, just maybe, dogs and cats can live together.

Here are five things on both President Barack Obama's and Congress' agendas that will show pretty quickly whether breaking the partisan logjam in the capital is possible or just a fantasy.

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