Countdown Clocks

Countdown Clocks

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Posts tagged "Congress"


Failure to raise the debt ceiling would cause the United States to default on its bills, a situation “dramatically worse” than the current government shutdown, President Barack Obama warned Tuesday.

But he also sought to assure jittery markets and nervous countries that the US would honor its debts despite the looming deadline for Congress to raise the borrowing cap and avoid a cash crunch.

“As soon as Congress votes to reopen the government, it’s also got to vote to meet our country’s commitments, pay our bills, raise the debt ceiling,” Obama told a press conference.

“As reckless as a government shutdown is, the economic shutdown caused by America defaulting would be dramatically worse,” he added.

Obama criticized rival Republican Party lawmakers for setting unrelated conditions before they would agree to pass a new budget and raise the debt ceiling.

Members of Congress “don’t get to demand ransom in exchange for doing their jobs,” he said.

The shutdown of non-essential federal government services was in its eighth day Tuesday, with hundreds of thousands of workers furloughed, or sent home without pay, after Congress failed to pass a budget for the 2014 fiscal year that began October 1.

Meanwhile the $16.7 trillion US borrowing ceiling needs to be raised by October 17, when the Treasury says it will run out of cash and lack the funds necessary to fund a chronic deficit of about $60 billion a month.

But Republican House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner has warned that he will not allow Congress to raise the ceiling unless Obama offers concessions on his signature reform law that expanded health-care coverage. 

h/t: The Raw Story

As the nation’s talking about the federal government being shut down (which the GOP/Tea Party extremists led by Ted Cruz and John Boehner caused BTW), KFTK radio host and conservative liar Dana Loesch celebrating the disastrous GOP-caused shutdown by falsely blaming the Democratic Party for allowing it to happen and even cheered the EPA being shut down.

As of Tuesday and continuing until further notice, the United States government has been shut down for the first time since 1995-1996. 
Guess who’s to blame for the shutdown? It’s the GOP and the Tea Party 100 percent.
They are absolutely harming America by playing games with our economy and pandering to hard-right Tea Party members rather than find a solution to help the American people out, such as their insistence on defunding the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare). 
This political stunt by House Speaker John Boehner, Sen. Ted Cruz and their right-wing cronies may end up handing the keys to the House of Representatives over to the Democrats in the 2014 elections. This event also serves as a reminder to vote out all Republicans next year.
Her tweets that baselessly attack Democrats on the government shutdown:
Media Matters For America debunked the false right-wing spin that “Harry Reid’s ignoring children who have cancer” was originated by the conservative-biased Washington Free Beacon and then spreads to the rest of the RWNJ apparatus.
Conservative media are selectively and deceptively quoting from an exchange between CNN’s Dana Bash Senate and Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) to make it appear as if he dismissed the plight of cancer-stricken children being denied access to clinical trials due to the shutdown of the federal government. In fact, Reid said that legislators should fully fund the government, rather than force different groups to fight over funding. 
Specifically, conservatives are claiming that Reid replied to a reporter’s question, “If you can help one child with cancer, why wouldn’t you?”  by saying “why would we want to do that?” In fact, Reid was responding to Sen. Chuck Schumer, who had interjected, saying “why pit one against the other?”
On October 1, the federal government was shut down after conservative Republicans refused to pass legislation funding operations unless that funding was tied to the defunding or delay of Obamacare.
The Democrats DID NOT shut down the government, you low-life fucking liar! The GOP voted for it
Tea Party members/supporters are NOT the majority of the country; however, they are a majority of the GOP’s support base. Another lie from you, Mrs. Loesch. 
Yes, it’s the GOP’s fault, you stupid turdbreath!
WRONG. The GOP did.

(cross-posted from

see more at Daily Kos:


GOP-Controlled House votes to avert government shutdown, delay Obamacare

APThe U.S. House voted to delay the Affordable Care Act and repeal a tax on medical devices as part of a government funding bill.

The White House issued a veto threat on the measure and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said the Senate would reject the health care language. 

To avoid a government shutdown, Congress must agree to a spending bill before the end of Monday. 

Undeterred, House Republicans pressed ahead with their latest attempt to squeeze a concession from the White House in exchange for letting the government open for business normally on Tuesday. “Obamacare is based on a limitless government, bureaucratic arrogance and a disregard of a will of the people,” said Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Ind.

The bill now goes back to the Senate, which isn’t schedule to meet until Monday afternoon. 

Photo: House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, walks to the House Floor at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Saturday, Sept. 28, 2013. (Molly Riley / AP Photo)

The House GOP is the one causing all this government shutdown bullshit.

Also: October 17th is the debt default deadline. 

Vote out ALL Republicans!!


House GOP Tells President They’ll Worry About Syria After They Come Back From Vacation

House Republicans have been ranting and raving all week about the President’s position on military…

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I will never forget having the honor of being a few feet away from Rep. John Dingell (D-MI) on the floor of the House as he cast the deciding 218th vote for healthcare reform. This great public servant had been fighting for universal healthcare for the length of two of my lifetimes, and showed no […] I will never forget having the honor of being a few feet away from Rep. John Dingell (D-MI) on the floor of the House as he cast the deciding 218th vote for healthcare reform. This great public servant had been fighting for universal healthcare for the length of two of my lifetimes, and showed no sign of slowing down. (While some colleagues gave me a look of pity for casting what they saw as a difficult vote, Dingell looked me in the eye and said, “You are fortunate to get the opportunity to be part of something that matters, and you won’t regret this.”)I will never forget having the honor of being a few feet away from Rep. John Dingell (D-MI) on the floor of the House as he cast the deciding 218th vote for healthcare reform. This great public servant had been fighting for universal healthcare for the length of two of my lifetimes, and showed no sign of slowing down. (While some colleagues gave me a look of pity for casting what they saw as a difficult vote, Dingell looked me in the eye and said, “You are fortunate to get the opportunity to be part of something that matters, and you won’t regret this.”)

This week, Dingell becomes the longest serving member of Congress in the history of our nation. While headlines are focusing on his longevity, articles are rightly focusing on the substance of his accomplishments. He is a veteran of World War II and of some of the most contentious political battles back home. He presided over the passage of Medicare and championed the Civil Rights Acts, knowing the latter would cost his party crucial seats in the South. He managed to be a staunch supporter of the auto industry and a major force behind key environmental legislation protecting Clean Air and Clean Water. He has been quiet titan for fairness and dignity that combines a Midwestern charm with a mastery of House procedure and old fashioned politics to get things done.

One could easily celebrate Dingell by looking backwards at his decades of accomplishments, but what amazes me is how much Dingell has to contribute to America’s direction going forward. A Midwestern populist, he has gained more wisdom than ideology through his six decades. Views that seemed a bit reactionary in the 1990s – opposing the repeal of Glass Steagell and accelerating the decline of America’s industrial base – now seem ahead of their time. He warned about “too big to fail” in 1999, because he had not forgotten why these rules were passed in the first place. While accused of being naïve to think America would still make and grow things, it is now those critics who seem naïve to have thought that every factory worker could just become a computer programmer and that the American middle class would track the financial sector more than others.

Too often we celebrate the Greatest Generation only with nostalgia instead of listening to what they can teach us about our future. After witnessing world wars and great depressions, civil rights movements and stagnation, and the explosion and steady decline of the American middle class, John Dingell yet has much to say worth the listening. One of the many things he taught me during our brief time together in Congress is that we can never let principles like basic fairness, promises like retirement with dignity, or planning for America’s competitiveness be categorized as old-fashioned. That is just an excuse not to fight for their relevance today. And because Dingell has always chosen the fight over the excuses, we are a stronger, more decent country and American community.

h/t: Tom Perriello at Think Progress

WASHINGTON (AP) — It seems like a simple proposition: give employees who work more than 40 hours a week the option of taking paid time off instead of overtime pay.

The choice already exists in the public sector. Federal and state workers can save earned time off and use it weeks or even months later to attend a parent-teacher conference, care for an elderly parent or deal with home repairs.

Republicans in Congress are pushing legislation that would extend that option to the private sector. They say that would bring more flexibility to the workplace and help workers better balance family and career.

The push is part of a broader Republican agenda undertaken by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., to expand the party’s political appeal to working families. The House is expected to vote on the measure this week, but the Democratic-controlled Senate isn’t likely to take it up.

“For some people, time is more valuable than the cash that would be accrued in overtime,” said Rep. Martha Roby, R-Ala., the bill’s chief sponsor. “Why should public-sector employees be given a benefit and the private sector be left out?”

But the idea Republicans promote as “pro-worker” is vigorously opposed by worker advocacy groups, labor unions and most Democrats. These opponents claim it’s really a backdoor way for businesses to skimp on overtime pay.

Judith Lichtman, senior adviser to the National Partnership for Women and Families, contends the measure would open the door for employers to pressure workers into taking compensatory time off instead of overtime pay.

The program was created in the public sector in 1985 to save federal, state and local governments money, not to give workers greater flexibility, Lichtman said. Many workers in federal and state government are unionized or have civil service protections that give them more leverage in dealing with supervisors, she added. Those safeguards don’t always exist in the private sector, where only about 6.6 percent of employees are union members.

Republicans and business groups have tried to pass the plan in some form since the 1990s.

Democrats say the bill provides no guarantee that workers would be able to take the time off when they want. The bill gives employers discretion over whether to grant a specific request to use comp time. Opponents also complain that banking leave time essentially gives employers an interest-free loan from workers.

h/t: TPM



‘I am not a dictator,’ says Obama after failure of sequester talks with Congress leaders

(Photo: Charles Dharapak / AP)

President says midnight budget cuts are the “choice” of Republicans who stonewalled any compromise to avert them.

Read the complete story.

Crooks and Liars: Fox’s Bolling and the Cashin’ In Panel Blames Union Contracts for the U.S. Postal Service’s Financial Woes

Leave it to Fox to do the bidding of the House Republicans and their allies, who are doing their best to try to destroy the U.S. Postal Service. Never mind the damage that would be done to the elderly who rely on the mail to receive their prescriptions, small businesses and Americans who live in rural areas with shoddy Internet service and the thousands of Americans who earn a decent middle class living from being employed there.

No, in the view of the majority of the panel members on this Saturday’s edition of Cashin’ In, that’s a terrible thing that those people are gainfully employed and heaven forbid have union representation and it’s all their fault that the Post Office is in financial straights. And par for the course with these “business block” shows of theirs, the only voice of reason was the one, poor, lonely outnumbered “liberal” Christian Dorsey, who did actually tell the truth about one of the problems — which is that Congress has “forced the USPS to pre-fund 75 years’ worth of pensions for its employees, a requirement not made of any other public or private institution.”

Instead we were treated to the rest of them screaming that we need to privatize the Postal Service, lying and telling the audience that other industries would provide the same services less expensively and ignoring, other than Dorsey again, that they have a mandate to serve all Americans which those other companies are not bound by. It really just boiled down to another shameful exercise in union bashing, which is what these Saturday shows on Fox do week, after week, after week, or at least when they’re not attacking the poor and demonizing liberals in general.