President Barack Obama will meet with top congressional leaders on Friday to discuss the deep, automatic U.S. government spending cuts slated to go into effect that day, congressional and White House officials said on Wednesday.
Obama is set to meet with Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives John Boehner, Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell, Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, the House Democratic leader.
The meeting would be the first between the leaders this year, despite weeks of haggling over whether and how Washington could avoid the cuts known as the “sequester,” which the White House has warned will cause damage to U.S. economic growth.
Considering he has yet to meet with Congressional leaders this year, and scheduled a post-sequester meeting two days before the cuts are triggered, does this seem like a gamble by the President to lay blame for the sequestration at the feet of Republicans to anybody else?
14:18 // 9 months ago
Barring an unexpected turn of legislative affairs, a ban on military-style semi-automatic assault weapons will not make it into law, top Hill aides and gun policy advocates say.
The ban will get a vote. But the purpose of that vote will be in part to facilitate its demise. The expectation is that there won’t be 60 members of the upper chamber to support the bill’s inclusion in the final legislative language.
The likelihood that an assault weapons ban ends up in the legislative scrapheap is hardly unexpected — the Wall Street Journal also reported on the issue on Monday morning. The ban is the most controversial of four major components of the gun control platform that the Obama administration introduced and that congressional Democrats have touted.
Long story short, Sen. Harry Reid is hoping that a Senate sub-committee strips out the assault weapons ban so that three more-popular gun control proposals might be passed by both chambers of Congress. Hit the jump for a detailed breakdown of the plan, and what it could mean for the gun control debate going forward.
16:03 // 10 months ago
It was only a few days before the nation would go over the fiscal cliff, no bipartisan agreement was in sight, and Reid had just publicly accused Boehner of running a “dictatorship” in the House and caring more about holding onto his gavel than striking a deal.
“Go f— yourself,” Boehner sniped as he pointed his finger at Reid, according to multiple sources present.
Reid, a bit startled, replied: “What are you talking about?”
Boehner repeated: “Go f— yourself.”
The harsh exchange just a few steps from the Oval Office — which Boehner later bragged about to fellow Republicans — was only one episode in nearly two months of high-stakes negotiations laced with distrust, miscommunication, false starts and yelling matches as Washington struggled to ward off $500 billion in tax hikes and spending cuts.
When elected officials talk to one another like drunks in a bar fight, everyone wins. (ht @stefanjbecket)
0:43 // 11 months ago