mostlycloudy
Friday July 3rd, 2015 4:19PM

Obama says no good reason to continue shutdown

By The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) -- With talks having stalled between the White House and House Republicans, a bipartisan group in the Senate is polishing a measure that would reopen the government and prevent a first-ever default on the country's bills.

The negotiations in the Senate come as the chamber meets in a rare Saturday session to vote on a Democratic measure to lift the government's borrowing cap through the end of next year. Republicans are poised to reject it amid talks among the group of rank-and-file senators - talks monitored with the full attention of Senate leaders.

The group's focus is on a proposal by Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and others that would pair a six-month plan to keep the government open with an increase in the government's borrowing limit through January.

House Republicans, meanwhile, are slated to meet Saturday morning to get an update from their leaders as matters come to a head.

President Barack Obama on Friday privately turned away a House plan to link the reopening of the government - and a companion measure to temporarily increase the government's borrowing cap - to concessions on the budget.

Publicly, top House Republicans said negotiations were on track. Obama called House Speaker John Boehner at midafternoon Friday, and Michael Steel, a spokesman for the leader of House Republicans, said, "They agreed that we should all keep talking."

Privately, the channel between the White House and the House wasn't bearing fruit, said aides on both sides. The aides required anonymity because the talks were private and they weren't authorized to discuss them by name.

"It wouldn't be wise, as some suggest, to just kick the debt-ceiling can down the road for a couple months, and flirt with a first-ever intentional default right in the middle of the holiday shopping season," Obama said in his Saturday radio and Internet address.

On Friday, a daily briefing by White House press secretary Jay Carney was delayed until after the stock market closed, and Carney said Obama "appreciates the constructive nature of the conversation and the proposal that House Republicans put forward." Yet, the spokesman said, "He has some concerns with it."

A House GOP aide and a White House official cast developments in a more pessimistic light, both requiring anonymity because of the secret nature of the talks. Among the options to be presented to a House GOP conference was a condition-free debt limit increase for just a few weeks and a continued closure of the government in hopes of concessions from Obama.

In the face of disastrous opinion polls, GOP leaders have signaled that they will make sure the debt limit is increased with minimal damage to the markets. But they're still seeking concessions as a condition for reopening the government.

Obama met Senate Republicans on Friday and heard a pitch from Collins on raising the debt limit until the end of January, reopening the government, and cutting the health care law at its periphery. It would also strengthen income verification for people receiving subsidies through the health care law and set up a broader set of budget talks.

The Collins plan would delay for two years a medical-device tax that helps finance the health care law, and it would subject millions of individuals eligible for subsidies to purchase health insurance under the program to stronger income verification.

At the Capitol, Collins said Obama said the proposal "was constructive, but I don't want to give the impression that he endorsed it."
© Copyright 2015 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
S&P 500 index has its best year since 1997
The stock market closed out a record year with more all-time highs on Tuesday, giving U.S. indexes their biggest annual gains in almost two decades.
6:56PM ( 1 year ago )
Colorado readies for 'Green Wednesday' pot sales
Police were adding extra patrols around pot shops in eight Colorado towns that plan to allow recreational sales to anyone over 21 on Jan. 1.
1:52PM ( 1 year ago )
Kerry seeks framework for Mideast peace talks
A senior State Department official says Secretary of State John Kerry will try this week to get Israel and the Palestinians to agree on a framework for negotiating a final peace agreement, yet cautions against raising expectations for Kerry's latest round of shuttle diplomacy.
1:35PM ( 1 year ago )
U.S. News
Missing Ga. bank director arrested in Brunswick
A bank director accused of losing millions of investors' dollars before vanishing last year was arrested Tuesday during a traffic stop in a city in south Georgia.
7:00PM ( 1 year ago )
Amtrak to suspend some Crescent service in Jan., Feb.
Amtrak service will shut down in parts of the Southeast for several days in January and February for rail maintenance by Norfolk Southern Railway.
9:00AM ( 1 year ago )
Lung cancer scans urged for some smokers, not all
Certain current or former heavy smokers should start getting yearly scans for lung cancer to cut their risk of death from the nation's top cancer killer, government advisers said Monday - even as they stressed that the tests aren't for everyone.
7:26AM ( 1 year ago )
Business News
Sex offender held in Hall County for failing to register
A 47-year-old man was booked into the Hall County Jail Tuesday, being held without bond for allegedly failing to register as a sex offender, his second such arrest.
6:09PM ( 1 year ago )
Pharmacy robberies may involve same suspect
Oakwood Police Tuesday afternoon released details in a pharmacy robbery they're investigating, similar to one that happened in the Hall County Tuesday morning.
5:46PM ( 1 year ago )
Victim critical following apartment fire
A 41-year-old woman was in critical but stable condition Tuesday after being rescued from an apartment fire in Forsyth County late Monday afternoon.
3:16PM ( 1 year ago )
Local/State News
Feeling US snub, Saudis strengthen ties elsewhere
Increasingly vocal in its frustration over U.S. policies in the Mideast, Saudi Arabia is strengthening ties elsewhere, seeking out an alignment that will bolster its position after it was pushed to the sidelines this year.
4:34PM ( 1 year ago )
NSA reportedly intercepts computer deliveries
A German magazine has lifted the lid on the operations of the National Security Agency's hacker unit, revealing how American spies intercepted computer deliveries, exploited hardware vulnerabilities, and even hijacked Microsoft's bug report system to spy on their targets.
12:31PM ( 1 year ago )
Rockets fired from Lebanon into Israel
Rockets from Lebanon struck northern Israel on Sunday, causing no injuries but sparking an Israeli reprisal shelling in a rare flare-up between the two countries.
12:26PM ( 1 year ago )
Politics
Federal report: Polar bears in peril due to global warming
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Polar bears are at risk of dying off if humans don't reverse the trend of global warming, a blunt U.S. government report filed Thursday said."The single most important step fo...
8:25PM ( 19 hours ago )
The Latest on train derailment: 5,000 evacuated in Tennessee
MARYVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — 6 p.m.An official in eastern Tennessee says smoke has stopped rising from the site where a CSX train car derailed and caught fire, forcing the evacuation of thousands of reside...
6:05PM ( 22 hours ago )
Obama draws sharp contrasts with 'mean' Republicans
LA CROSSE, Wis. (AP) — Wading into presidential politics, President Barack Obama on Thursday promoted his brand of middle-class economics by drawing sharp contrasts with "mean" Republicans in a state...
5:36PM ( 22 hours ago )
Jim Webb, Iraq war critic in Senate, running for president
WASHINGTON (AP) — Jim Webb, a decorated Vietnam veteran and accomplished novelist who became a fierce critic of the Iraq war in the Senate, announced Thursday that he's challenging Hillary Rodham Clin...
5:08PM ( 23 hours ago )
Top Republican doubts Senate will confirm ambassador to Cuba
WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday that his chamber is unlikely to approve an American ambassador to Cuba, dishing out a quick rebuff to President Barack Obama and...
4:28PM ( 23 hours ago )