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Christian Bourge

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Senate majority leader sees action on omnibus by March 6 deadline

February 24, 2009 Senate Democrats are pressing to approve the $410 billion omnibus spending bill by late next week to beat the March 6 deadline when the current continuing resolution expires. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said on Tuesday he would push the Senate to take up the omnibus as soon as ...

Negotiators agree to a leaner stimulus bill

February 11, 2009 Negotiators on Wednesday announced a deal on a slimmed-down $789.5 billion economic stimulus bill amid bipartisan disappointment. Democrats will not get all they want, but Republicans, other than three Senate GOP moderates who helped shape the outcome, said they were excluded from the process. "It seems as though [senators] are ...

Senate passes stimulus as thorny talks with House await

February 10, 2009 With the help of three Republican moderates, the Senate on Tuesday passed, 61-37, an $838 billion economic stimulus package and named conferees for what is likely to be a touchy negotiation with the House. Conference talks will start Tuesday afternoon, with a goal of getting the final bill to President ...

Lawmakers upset over DHS employee's handling of dead fish, white powder

February 10, 2009 A Homeland Security intelligence official was responsible for bringing a package containing a dead fish and white powder to department offices in downtown Washington Friday, an apparent violation of security protocols that set off a significant security incident, according to sources familiar with the matter. The incident also has caught ...

Senate moderates stay firm on cost of stimulus bill

February 9, 2009 With the Senate expected Monday evening to end debate on a roughly $820 billion Senate version of an economic stimulus plan, moderates who cut a deal to remove $100 billion in funding say they will resist House efforts to restore some of that money in conference and will push for ...

Amendment to stimulus bill would cut funding for new computers

February 4, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Senate is turning its attention to two potentially bipartisan amendments that backers hope will draw enough GOP support for the stimulus bill to pass, as Senate Republicans call for adding provisions to aid the housing market and to cut spending from the Senate stimulus bill. Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., ...

Omnibus spending bill not likely until after recess

February 3, 2009 House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., said Tuesday that he expects the omnibus appropriations package containing the nine remaining fiscal 2009 appropriations bills to be completed after Congress returns from the Presidents Day recess late this month. "My expectation is that we will complete the omnibus prior to the 6th ...

Inaugural speech plays to bipartisan praise from lawmakers

January 20, 2009 As the throngs of onlookers poured away from the Capitol on Tuesday afternoon, Democrats and Republicans alike praised Barack Obama's first speech as president, though GOP lawmakers promised to keep a watchful eye on the new commander-in-chief. House Democratic Caucus Chairman John Larson of Connecticut said Obama "hit it out ...

Repeal of terms limits for House chairs irks GOP

January 7, 2009 House Democrats approved rules Tuesday for the 111th Congress that repeal six-year term limits for committee chairmen and prevent Republicans from using a procedural gambit to disrupt floor action. The vote was 242-181. Republicans were particularly peeved at losing the minority's right to offer an alternative to legislation on the ...

Holder hearing, bailout might spoil bipartisan start in '09

December 15, 2008 Senate Democrats are expected to start the 111th Congress with popular measures that could set a bipartisan tone -- and woo Republican allies -- but potential fights over bailout legislation and Attorney General nominee Eric Holder might short-circuit those warm feelings. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., has touted plans ...