EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

World/National News

October 9, 2013

Shutdown-Debt fight: There's talk about talks

WASHINGTON — After weeks of gridlock, House Republicans floated broad hints Tuesday they might be willing to pass short-term legislation re-opening the government and averting a threatened default — in exchange for immediate talks with the Obama administration on measures to reduce deficits and change the nation’s three-year-old health care law.

“I suspect we can work out a mechanism to raise the debt ceiling while a negotiation is underway,” said Rep. Tom Cole, an Oklahoma Republican, who is close to Speaker John Boehner.

“I want to have a conversation,” Boehner told reporters. “I’m not drawing lines in the sand. It is time for us to just sit down and resolve our differences.”

The White House responded with marginally less bellicose language of its own without yielding on its core demands in the latest test of divided government.

President Barack Obama told Boehner in a phone call he would be willing to negotiate “over policies that Republicans think would strengthen the country” once the eight-day partial shutdown was over and the threat of default eased.

The events unfolded as the stock market sank for the second day in a row. And in the latest in a string of dire warnings, the International Monetary Fund said failure to raise the $16.7 trillion borrowing limit later this month could lead to a U.S. government default that might disrupt global financial markets, raise interest rates and push the U.S economy back into recession.

Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew has said the deadline for Congress to act is Oct., 17, setting that as the day the government will exhaust its ability to borrow funds and will have to rely day-to-day on tax and other receipts to pay its bills.

In the Senate, Majority Leader Harry Reid readied legislation to raise the debt limit by roughly $1 trillion, enough to prevent a recurrence of the current showdown until after the 2014 elections.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Latest News
World/National News

Latest U.S. News
US Evacuates Embassy in Libya Amid Clashes Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Obama Asks Central American Leaders for Help Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Obama Advisor Skips House Hearing Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Dempsey: Putin May Light Fire and Lose Control In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites Anti-violence Advocate Killed, but Not Silenced. Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives'
Latest World News
Kerry Lays Out Ceasefire Goals for Gaza Family of MH17 Victim Pay Respects at Crash Site US Evacuates Embassy in Libya Amid Clashes Raw: Tanks Patrol Gaza Streets During Ceasefire Raw: Residents Come Home to Rubble in Gaza 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Today in History for July 26th Raw: Palestinians and Israeli Soldiers Clash Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Today in History for July 25th Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee
Photos of the Week