Politics

3:29am

Thu December 19, 2013
NPR Story

Senate Follows House, Passes Budget Deal

Originally published on Thu December 19, 2013 11:08 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. Despite some very loud grumbling, both chambers of Congress have approved a two-year federal budget plan. This drops the odds of a federal government shutdown early next year, but it certainly does not end the debate over federal spending.

INSKEEP: NPR's Tamara Keith is on the line this morning to talk about one figure from the agreement, which suggests the scale of budget fights ahead. And Tamara, what's the figure?

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2:26am

Thu December 19, 2013
Shots - Health News

Congress Poised To Permanently Fix Its Medicare Payment Glitch

Originally published on Thu December 19, 2013 11:56 am

It's health results — not the number of treatments — that should count, leaders say.
iStockphoto

The two-year budget deal approved by the Senate on Wednesday is aimed at preventing another government shutdown.

It also includes a familiar annual rider — language to avert a steep pay cut to doctors who treat Medicare patients. But this time might be different, with a fix that lasts. After more than a decade of temporary solutions, it appears Congress might be on the verge of permanently solving its persistent problem in the way it makes Medicare payments to doctors.

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4:59pm

Wed December 18, 2013
The Two-Way

Senate Approves Budget Deal, Reducing Chances Of A Shutdown

Originally published on Thu December 19, 2013 5:24 pm

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), walks to the chamber for the final votes on the bipartisan budget deal on Wednesday.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

The Senate passed a two-year bipartisan budget deal aimed at easing automatic spending cuts and avoiding a government shutdown, following a House vote on the measure last week.

The vote by a simple majority was absent the partisan brinksmanship that has become a hallmark of budget deals in recent memory.

The appropriations committees in both chambers must now set in stone a $1.012 trillion fiscal 2014 spending bill before current spending authority expires. Congress also faces a spring 2014 to raise the debt ceiling — another potential partisan standoff.

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4:46pm

Wed December 18, 2013
Politics

Push For Release Of CIA Interrogation Report Continues

Originally published on Wed December 18, 2013 6:31 pm

Mark Udall of Colorado is one of the Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee pressing for the so-called torture report to be declassified.
Susan Walsh AP

For more than a year, the Senate Intelligence Committee and the CIA have been engaged in a tug of war over the release of the so-called torture report.

Chairman Dianne Feinstein, a Democrat from California, says the $40 million, 6,000-page report demonstrates that CIA treatment of detainees was all but useless in terms of gathering actionable intelligence.

For its part, the CIA says the classified committee report contains significant errors and that no one at the agency was interviewed by Senate investigators.

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4:46pm

Wed December 18, 2013
World

Obama, Biden Won't Go To 2014 Olympics, But Gay Athletes Will

Originally published on Wed December 18, 2013 5:34 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

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