April 3rd, 2012
04:51 PM ET
2 years ago

GSA chief gone, but fallout continues in wake of lavish convention expense

Washington (CNN) - A day after the head of the General Services Administration resigned because of a procurement scandal at the federal agency, officials vowed Tuesday to implement spending reforms and disciplinary action she announced on the way out the door.

A letter Monday from now-former GSA Administrator Martha Johnson agreed with the recommendations of the GSA Inspector General in a report that documented massive overspending, questionable expenditures, and a cavalier attitude toward procurement rules surrounding a regional training conference held in Las Vegas in 2010.

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Filed under: White House
Congressional lawmakers temporarily extend highway spending authority
March 29th, 2012
03:21 PM ET
2 years ago

Congressional lawmakers temporarily extend highway spending authority

Washington (CNN) – It's not a permanent fix, nor will repairs suddenly happen to certain run-down roads, but congressional lawmakers have passed a 90-day extension of the federal transportation budget just ahead of an end-of the-month deadline.

If Congress had failed to act, funding for transportation projects would have run out. President Obama must still sign the measure.
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Filed under: Congress • Democrats • Republicans
Group opposed to health care law delivers petitions to Congress
March 23rd, 2012
03:16 PM ET
2 years ago

Group opposed to health care law delivers petitions to Congress

Washington (CNN) - The conservative activist group FreedomWorks delivered to ranking congressional Democrats what it said are tens of thousands of pages of a petition signed by people opposed to the Affordable Care Act.

The signature health care reform plan from the Obama administration was enacted two years ago Friday, and next week faces a challenge in the U.S. Supreme Court.
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Filed under: Congress • FreedomWorks • Health care
Senior Democrat Conyers criticizes Obama
March 14th, 2011
03:33 PM ET
3 years ago

Senior Democrat Conyers criticizes Obama

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Senior Democrat John Conyers of Michigan criticized Barack Obama Monday, hoping, Conyers said, to "make him a better president."

Citing the troubled job market, rising energy costs, and turmoil in the Middle East, the congressman told reporters at the National Press Club "We keep getting a longer and longer list of things he wanted to do, wished he could do more about, and is of course having a big problem."

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Filed under: John Conyers • President Obama
Florida congressman sued for alleged sexual harassment
March 7th, 2011
03:58 PM ET
3 years ago

Florida congressman sued for alleged sexual harassment

Washington (CNN) - The conservative legal watchdog group Judicial Watch filed suit Monday against Florida Democratic congressman Alcee Hastings, accusing him of sexually harassing a onetime female staffer during an assignment to Vienna, Austria.

The civil case filed at U.S. District Court in Washington is on behalf of Winsome Packer, who not only alleges the congressman sexually harassed her but claims that her affiliation with the Republican Party was used against her when Hastings retaliated following her complaints.
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Filed under: Alcee Hastings • Democrats • Florida
Defeated members of Congress moved from offices to cubicles
December 1st, 2010
03:39 PM ET
3 years ago

Defeated members of Congress moved from offices to cubicles

Washington (CNN) – It was a moving day deadline for members of Congress who won't be coming back in January, and most seemed to be meeting Wednesday's timetable to pack up their prestigious offices and move to relatively humble cubicles to finish their final days on Capitol Hill.

But some are finding the temporary quarters a little demoralizing as staffers try to complete legislative duties from cubicles and banquet tables set up in the Rayburn Office Building cafeteria. Others are relegated to spending their December days sharing big, empty hearing rooms.
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Filed under: 2010 • Congress
February 18th, 2010
06:36 PM ET
4 years ago

Black farmers claim victory in proposed settlement over bias

The head of the National Black Farmers Association said Thursday the U.S. government has agreed to pay qualified farmers $50,000 each to settle claims of racial bias.
The head of the National Black Farmers Association said Thursday the U.S. government has agreed to pay qualified farmers $50,000 each to settle claims of racial bias.

Washington (CNN) - The head of the National Black Farmers Association said Thursday the U.S. government has agreed to pay qualified farmers $50,000 each to settle claims of racial bias.

And U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said those farmers may also pursue a claim for actual damages from the bias, and potentially receive up to $250,000.

The settlement, which covers as many as 80,000 black farmers, still needs to be funded by Congress to cover the price tag of more than $1 billion, both sides acknowledged Thursday.

The 2010 farm bill, still pending in Congress, includes more than a $1 billion to cover the compensation claims.

President Barack Obama issued a written statement Thursday saying, in part, "My administration is dedicated to ensuring that federal agencies treat all our citizens fairly, and the settlement in the Pigford case reflects that commitment."

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Filed under: Uncategorized
February 15th, 2010
01:30 PM ET
4 years ago

Black farmers protest delays to settle claims of racial bias

John Boyd, founder of the National Black Farmers Association, spoke Monday at a rally in Washington.
John Boyd, founder of the National Black Farmers Association, spoke Monday at a rally in Washington.

Washington (CNN) - A group representing African-American farmers hopes to persuade Congress to fund a court settlement compensating them for long-standing claims of racial bias in federal farm programs.

But a rally Monday outside the U.S. Department of Agriculture took place on a federal holiday, and only about a dozen black farmers showed up for their cause.

Undeterred by the turnout as well as the fact that they had to shovel snow to create a place to deliver remarks, the group brought crates of corn and packets of seed labeled with messages they plan to deliver to Capitol Hill.

"We are here acting on a law that was enacted in 2008 by Congress," said John Boyd, founder of the National Black Farmers Association. "So this is already law and the black farmers are still waiting."

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Filed under: Congress