(CNN) - Lawmakers skipped out of Washington last week as the forced spending cuts were set to take effect, but when they return to town, they'll find those and a list of other priorities on their plates.
Here are five things Congress and the White House can expect to confront in the coming weeks.
(CNN) -– One person described it as the “ultimate nerd sin.” Others didn’t think it’s so bad. But President Barack Obama took heat online for tangling the Jedi mind trick with the Vulcan mind meld.
Obama said Friday he didn't have the power to "somehow do a Jedi mind meld with these folks and convince them to do what's right" on reaching a deal to avert the forced budget cuts known in Washington as the sequester. The comment came in response to a question from CNN chief White House correspondent Jessica Yellin after the president met with top congressional leaders from both parties.
Washington (CNN) – They argued over the forced spending cuts known as sequestration before those cuts took effect, and on the first full day of the cuts being official, Congress and the White House are still bickering over who is to blame.
“It’s happening because Republicans in Congress chose this outcome over closing a single wasteful tax loophole that helps reduce the deficit,” President Barack Obama said in his weekly address on Saturday.
(CNN) - President Barack Obama signed as required on Friday evening an order implementing the broad forced federal spending cuts, known in Washington as the sequester. He was required to sign the order before 11:59 p.m.
The full text of Obama's order is below the jump.
(CNN) – Is it 2013–or 2012 again?
Former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney blasted President Barack Obama over the forced, across-the-board spending cuts–known in Washington as the sequester–scheduled to kick in Friday.
(CNN) – President Obama stepped into the White House Press Briefing Room to give a statement and take questions about the forced spending cuts scheduled to begin Friday.
Find a transcript of the press conference after the jump.
Washington (CNN) – Just two months after the brinksmanship of the "fiscal cliff," Washington is staring at yet another deadline to avoid yet another fiscal calamity of its own making.
But this time, something is different.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) – President Barack Obama blamed Congress for failing to prevent forced spending cuts that take effect Friday, saying the reductions will harm economic recovery.
The president had met with with congressional leaders at the White House on Friday morning, but no agreement emerged to avert forced spending cuts that both sides oppose.FULL STORY
New York (CNNMoney) – The political bickering over the automatic spending cuts has done little but cloud the public's understanding of what's going on and why.
So we'll try to set the record straight on at least a few oft-repeated misconceptions.FULL STORY
(CNN) – Lawmakers have known about this day since August 2011 - a day they say was never supposed to come - but nevertheless, it's here.
Starting Friday, the federal government is required by law to start cutting $85 billion from its budget over the next seven months, with a total of $1.2 trillion over the next decade.