Dec 18, 2014

113th Congress ends with more fights than feats

The tempestuous 113th U.S. Congress has limped out of Washington for the last time, capping two years of modest and infrequent legislating that was overshadowed by partisan clashes, gridlock and investigations. More than 200 bills became law during the past two years, according to ...

Dec 17, 2014

U.S. Senate confirms Obama nominee for No. 2 diplomat

The U.S. Senate confirmed the nomination of Tony Blinken as the country’s No. 2 diplomat Tuesday, as Democrats pushed to approve some of President Barack Obama’s choices for government posts before Republicans control Congress next year. Senators voted 55-38 to approve Blinken to serve ...

Dec 17, 2014

Obama signs $1.1 trillion spending bill into law

With little fanfare to mark a rare bipartisan achievement, President Barack Obama on Tuesday signed a massive, $1.1 trillion spending bill that keeps the federal government operating over the next nine months. The legislation was a compromise that angered liberals and conservatives alike but ...

Dec 17, 2014

U.S. Congress extends dozens of tax breaks

The U.S. Senate approved a sweeping package of tax breaks Tuesday, sending to President Barack Obama a bill that allows individuals and corporations to save billions of dollars on their 2014 taxes. On the Senate’s final day of the year, lawmakers passed some 55 ...

Dec 17, 2014

Republicans tip hand on Obama lines of attack with nominees

Senate Republicans are previewing the lines of attack they’ll pursue in 2015 against President Barack Obama’s immigration, foreign policy and gun regulation policies during this week’s debate on executive-branch nominees. Tuesday, Republicans’ anger over Obama’s Nov. 20 order granting a temporary reprieve from deportation ...

Britain to seek out CIA torture report

Dec 15, 2014

Britain to seek out CIA torture report

A U.K. parliamentary panel wants access to information not made public in a U.S. Senate report that may pertain to Britain’s role in the interrogation and rendition of terror suspects following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Malcolm Rifkind, chairman of the Intelligence and Security ...

Congress sends Obama $1.1 trillion spending bill

Dec 14, 2014

Congress sends Obama $1.1 trillion spending bill

A $1.1 trillion spending bill is on its way to President Barack Obama for his signature. The Senate voted 56-40 on Saturday for the long-term funding bill, the main item left on Congress’ year-end agenda. The measure provides money for nearly the entire government ...

CIA medics aided and improved interrogation tactics: report

Dec 13, 2014

CIA medics aided and improved interrogation tactics: report

From the early stages of the CIA’s coercive interrogations of terrorism detainees, the agency’s health professionals were intimately involved. Front-line medics and psychologists monitored and advised on abusive tactics, even as they sometimes complained about the ethical dilemmas gnawing at them, according to last ...

Dec 12, 2014

TPP odds now 'higher than 50-50': Obama

The chances that U.S. negotiators can bring home a strong trade deal with Asia-Pacific countries are now much better than 50-50, U.S. President Barack Obama said on Thursday. Obama said he was also confident the administration could make a “strong case” in Congress for ...

Sen. Feinstein tells CIA director to #ReadTheReport

Dec 12, 2014

Sen. Feinstein tells CIA director to #ReadTheReport

As CIA chief John Brennan defended the spy agency’s interrogation program for terrorism suspects Thursday, a senior senator whose committee published a damning report on the practice contested his claims. Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein’s staffers repeatedly used the hashtag #ReadTheReport on the ...