Politics

Politics
3:02 pm
Tue October 15, 2013

A Turbulent Day In Capitol Hill As Debt Default Looms

Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 4:12 pm

With the threat of defaulting on the nation's obligations now possibly just two days off, the focus shifted back to the House, where Speaker John Boehner called a caucus meeting to sell his plan — and then quickly had to downplay the idea that he even had a plan. The Senate, meanwhile, slowed things down to see if Boehner could pass anything at all.

The Salt
1:30 pm
Tue October 15, 2013

Among The Shutdown Victims: The White House Kitchen Garden

Basil, tomatoes, peppers and lettuces grow in garden beds on the South Lawn of the White House. According to the site Obama Foodorama, the government shutdown has had a dramatic effect on the garden.
Eddie Gehman Kohan ObamaFoodorama.com

Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 3:18 pm

The government shutdown has forced a lot of hard-working people into idleness. That includes most of the staff that tends the famed White House kitchen garden, according to Obama Foodorama.

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U.S.
1:30 pm
Tue October 15, 2013

What Happens If Congress Can't Make A Deal On The Debt?

A biker rides past the U.S. Capitol on Monday. Lawmakers are negotiating over plans to raise the federal debt ceiling amid warnings that the government soon won't be able to pay its debts in full.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 16, 2013 4:10 pm

If you don't pay your electric bill on time, you'll probably get charged a buck or two in interest. As long as you pay off the balance in a reasonable amount of time, your lights will stay on.

So why is it such a big deal that the Treasury Department may soon be unable to pay all of its bills on time?

U.S. Treasury securities are used as both currency and collateral for countless financial transactions around the world. Think dozens per minute.

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The Protojournalist
10:56 am
Tue October 15, 2013

How To Build Trust From Mistrust

House Speaker John Boehner listens as President Obama delivers a statement on Syria during a meeting with members of Congress at the White House on Sept. 3.
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 11:31 am

Looking beyond the shutdown and debt ceiling stalemates, CNN's John King said on TV Monday night that distrust among all parties in Washington is "deep and multilayered."

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Politics
10:48 am
Tue October 15, 2013

Support Unclear For GOP's Plan To End Shutdown

Originally published on Mon October 28, 2013 8:12 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news begins with the latest on the deadlock here in Washington.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

GREENE: We've been following the story all this hour: House Republicans have been expected to announce their own plan to end the partial government shutdown and avert a default on the national debt. But House Speaker John Boehner came to the microphones a short while ago and kept things very vague.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

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Economy
9:55 am
Tue October 15, 2013

Is The U.S. In A Debt Crisis?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. You might've been hearing the name Malala Yousafzai. She is the Pakistani teenager who was shot at point-blank range by Taliban extremists a year ago because she dared to speak up about her desire to go to school. She has made a remarkable recovery. She is in the U.S. now. I spoke with her a few days ago and we'll bring you a portion of that conversation a little later in the program.

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Politics
9:03 am
Tue October 15, 2013

House GOP To Propose Plan To Reopen Government

Originally published on Mon October 28, 2013 8:12 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

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It's All Politics
8:33 am
Tue October 15, 2013

Tuesday Morning Political Mix

Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 9:52 am

Good morning from Washington, D.C., your nation's capital, where we are now into Day 15 of your government's shutdown and counting down to your government's looming default on its debt.

Yes, we all wish we were still in bed with the pillow over our head. (Even, we imagine, former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, who told The Wall Street Journal that military readiness is being damaged by the budget standoff.)

Dire? There is little argument, except from the most ardent default-is-no-big-deal fringe.

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The Two-Way
5:10 am
Tue October 15, 2013

On Capitol Hill, A Flurry Of Activity But Still No Deal

House Speaker John Boehner (center) and House Majority Whip Rep. Kevin McCarthy (right) arrive for a Republican caucus meeting at the U.S. Capitol.
Jonathan Ernst Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 9:16 pm

(This post was last updated at 11:05 p.m. ET)

With a little more than a day to go before the nation potentially defaults on its debts, there's still no solid plan on the table in Washington.

There was a flurry of activity on Tuesday, but it produced little significant movement.

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Analysis
3:08 am
Tue October 15, 2013

Columnist Doubts Parties Can Resolve Fundamental Differences

Steve Inskeep talks to Jonathan Chait, a commentator for New York magazine about how liberals are viewing the current budget negotiations in Congress, and if they might be willing to compromise on a deal.

Politics
3:03 am
Tue October 15, 2013

House Waits For Details On Senate Bipartisan Proposal

With the debt ceiling deadline looming just two days away, Senate leaders say they're close to a deal that would reopen the government and avert default. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell have been leading bipartisan talks on a way out of the deadlock. Even if a bipartisan agreement clears the Senate, it will likely be a hard sell to House Republicans.

NPR Story
2:38 am
Tue October 15, 2013

Government Shutdown Delays Start Of Crab Season

Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 3:27 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Crabbing season starts today in Alaska, well, except it doesn't. Crabbers and their boats are stuck in port because they can't get the permits that they need to begin their work. Federal workers who issue those permits are off the job because of the partial government shutdown and this is cutting into the short three month Alaska crab season, which is worth upwards of $200 million for the crabbers alone.

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Law
12:48 am
Tue October 15, 2013

Supreme Court Returns To Affirmative Action In Michigan Case

People wait in line for the beginning of the Supreme Court's new term on Oct. 7.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Mon October 28, 2013 8:12 am

The U.S. Supreme Court takes up the issue of affirmative action again Tuesday, but this time the question is not whether race may be considered as a factor in college admissions. Instead, this case tests whether voters can ban affirmative action programs through a referendum.

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Business
12:36 am
Tue October 15, 2013

JPMorgan To Front Customers If Federal Shutdown Drags On

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon testifies before the House Financial Services Committee on June 19, 2012 in Washington, D.C.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 2:50 am

JPMorgan Chase says it will cover Social Security and Welfare payments for its customers if the government goes into default or the shutdown continues.

If nothing else, it's good public relations for a company which hasn't had much lately.

The bank spent nearly 40 percent of the company's revenue over the last quarter — more than $9 billion — on legal expenses. Money paid to fight government investigations and on fines.

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Politics
2:51 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

Optimism, But Still No Debt Deal, On Capitol Hill

Originally published on Mon October 14, 2013 4:19 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

President Obama says he's hoping for a new spirit of cooperation to end the two-week old government shutdown and avoid a crippling default. And there are some encouraging signs this afternoon. Democratic and Republican leaders in the Senate say they're optimistic a deal can be reached soon. The President had summoned congressional leaders to the White House this afternoon, but that meeting was postponed to allow more time for talks to continue on Capitol Hill.

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Politics
2:51 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

Rep. Cole: Shutting Down Government Was Not A Good Tactic

Originally published on Mon October 14, 2013 4:19 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

I'm joined now by Republican Congressman Tom Cole of Oklahoma. He's also House deputy whip, one of those who counts and cajoles fellow Republicans ahead of a vote. Congressman Cole, welcome to the program.

REPRESENTATIVE TOM COLE: It's great to be with you.

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Politics
2:51 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

More Negotiations, Still No Deal, On Shutdown, Debt Ceiling

Originally published on Mon October 14, 2013 4:19 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block. Both the House and the Senate were in session today as the country closes in on the debt ceiling deadline. If Congress doesn't raise the debt limit before Thursday, the White House says the country will likely begin defaulting on its obligations. President Obama postponed a meeting with congressional leaders this afternoon.

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Politics
2:51 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

An Insider's View Of The Debt Ceiling And Shutdown Talks

Originally published on Mon October 14, 2013 4:19 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

So what is going on behind closed doors? Just how do these top-level congressional talks work? We're going to get some inside dope now from a former insider, Jim Manley who was a top adviser to Senator majority leader Harry Reid and, before that, press secretary to Senator Ted Kennedy. Jim Manley, welcome.

JIM MANLEY: Thank you very much.

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Politics
2:51 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar On Monday's Hill Negotiations

Originally published on Mon October 14, 2013 4:19 pm

Melissa Block spoke with Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., about Senate negotiations on the debt ceiling and partial federal government shutdown.

The Two-Way
8:17 am
Mon October 14, 2013

Reid And McConnell Cite 'Progress' As Default Deadline Looms

Still Right Twice A Day: Visitors look at the Ohio Clock outside the Senate chamber on Capitol Hill Sunday. The clock that has stood watch over the Senate for 196 years stopped running shortly after noon Wednesday. Employees who wind the clock weekly were furloughed in the federal shutdown.
Jose Luis Magana AP

Originally published on Mon October 14, 2013 4:34 pm

This post was last updated at 6:10 p.m. ET.

The House and Senate were in session on Columbus Day, the 14th day of the federal government shutdown. A meeting that had been arranged between President Obama, Vice President Biden and the four main leaders of Congress was postponed, as the White House cited the progress being made in negotiations.

The latest word of a possible deal calls for raising the federal debt limit through Feb. 15 and funding a return to work for the government through Jan. 15. We'll update this post as more news comes in.

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Analysis
2:21 am
Mon October 14, 2013

Shutdown In Day 14, Debt Ceiling Deadline Nears

Originally published on Mon October 14, 2013 2:43 am

Congress and the White House continue to work through the twin fiscal crises of funding for the federal government and the debt ceiling. Steve Inskeep and David Greene explore the dimensions of this massive political drama with Cokie Roberts, who weighs in on political topics most Mondays on Morning Edition, Robert Costa of the National Review, who's been following developments on Capitol Hill, and Terence Samuel of The Washington Post, who has been following public attitudes nationally.

Politics
1:23 am
Mon October 14, 2013

How The Debt Limit Became 'A Nuclear-Tipped Leverage Point'

Congress set a limit on how much debt the U.S. Treasury could accrue back in 1917.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Wed October 16, 2013 4:14 pm

Political battles over the debt limit have been around nearly as long as the law passed by Congress in 1917 that set a statutory limit for how much debt the Treasury could accrue.

Since then, Congress has had to increase that limit on more than 100 occasions — and 40 of those times, lawmakers have tried to tie strings to raising the debt ceiling. In the last few years, though, there's been a marked escalation in those demands.

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Animals
3:53 pm
Sun October 13, 2013

Birds Of A Feather Spy Together

AFP/ Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 13, 2013 4:12 pm

The scene: Two men in a chilly Soviet apartment converse in whispers, careful to protect their plans from enemy ears. Little do they know, the benign-looking raven outside their window is not merely a city scavenger hunting for food, but a spy for the U.S. government.

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The Two-Way
3:05 pm
Sun October 13, 2013

Sequester Emerges Anew In Senate Shutdown Debate

Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), left, seen here speaking with Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) in an elevator Sunday, says that undoing the sequester cuts is "one of the sticking points" in budget talks. Congress is struggling to find a solution to end the government shutdown, now in its thirteenth day.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 13, 2013 4:15 pm

The federal government shutdown is in its 13th day, with little sign of a budget deal that could win the approval of both houses of Congress, as well as the White House. The debate now includes efforts to avoid a default if the government's debt limit isn't raised by Thursday.

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The Two-Way
11:28 am
Sun October 13, 2013

Barriers Breached At World War II Memorial On Mall

A crowd gathers at the World War II Memorial to call for reopening national memorials closed by the government shutdown. The rally drew support from military veterans, Tea Party activists and Republicans.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 13, 2013 1:52 pm

A crowd of demonstrators converged on the World War II Memorial on the National Mall on Sunday morning, protesting the government shutdown that has included blocking full access to monuments in Washington.

The "Million Vet March," protest was organized by groups including the Brats for Veterans Advocacy, which called on military veterans and others to march against the barricading of the memorial, which its website calls "a despicable act of cowardice."

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Politics
5:49 am
Sun October 13, 2013

Senators Hunt For Budget Agreement

Originally published on Sun October 13, 2013 6:47 am

Deal or no deal? That's the question in American politics right now as the shutdown drags on and the debt ceiling looms. Host Rachel Martin talks with NPR's political correspondent Mara Liasson.

Politics
5:49 am
Sun October 13, 2013

How To Be A 'Super Forecaster'

Originally published on Sun October 13, 2013 6:47 am

Experts and pundits' predictions of the future aren't particularly accurate, according to University of Pennsylvania professor Philip Tetlock. He tells host Rachel Martin that making accurate predictions might be a trainable skill.

It's All Politics
3:41 am
Sun October 13, 2013

Senate Gets A Dose Of Scolding With Its Morning Prayer

Senate Chaplain Barry C. Black has been using his morning prayer to express his displeasure with political gridlock.
Drew Angerer AP

Originally published on Sun October 13, 2013 1:21 pm

It's easy to tune out when the Senate goes through its morning rituals. The president pro tem calls the chamber to order; there's the Pledge of Allegiance. One morning could sound like any other.

Except for the past two weeks. Barry C. Black, the Senate chaplain, has been using his morning prayers to say exactly what he thinks is wrong with Washington lawmakers: "Remove from them that stubborn pride, which imagines itself to be above and beyond criticism."

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The Two-Way
10:48 am
Sat October 12, 2013

Senate Democrats Visit Obama; Boehner Says Talks Are Over

Speaker of the House John Boehner leaves after discussing the government shutdown with his fellow Republicans on Capitol Hill Saturday. Boehner reportedly told his colleagues that talks with the White House had ended without a deal.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Sat October 12, 2013 4:02 pm

President Obama hosted the Senate's leading Democrats at the White House for more than an hour Saturday afternoon, in a session that came the same day that Majority Leader Harry Reid met with Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell.

No details were available about the Democrats' discussion, which is one of several lines of communication that are aimed at reaching consensus on a budget deal. Earlier Saturday, House Speaker John Boehner said negotiations with the White House were over, after the president rejected the GOP's most recent plan.

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The Two-Way
9:47 am
Sat October 12, 2013

Grand Canyon And Other National Parks Reopen, On States' Dime

Tourists stop on the roadside near Mount Rushmore, after their visit was canceled due to the government shutdown. South Dakota and other states have reached an agreement to fund operations to reopen the parks.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Thanks to agreements between the Department of the Interior and several states, a dozen popular national parks are open again, at least temporarily. The parks range from the Statue of Liberty to the Grand Canyon; the states are paying to keep them open for up to 10 days.

State officials say it's particularly important to have the parks open during the Columbus Day holiday weekend. National Park Service employees began opening some facilities Friday; others will reopen today or Monday.

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