President Barack Obama
President Barack Obama brought congressional leaders to the White House on Wednesday for the first time since a government shutdown began, but there was no sign of progress toward ending the impasse.
There were suggestions from leaders in both parties that the government shutdown, heading for its second day, could last for weeks and grow to encompass a possible default by the Treasury if Congress fails to raise the nation’s debt ceiling.
The White House budget office directed federal agencies to shut down early Tuesday, after Congress missed a midnight funding deadline and triggered a government closure for the first time in 17 years.
U.S. House Republicans advanced a bill on Friday that would continue funding the government at current spending levels for nearly three months but would strip money appropriated to fund Obamacare. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., condemned the resolution.
Federal Reserve Vice Chair Janet Yellen – a Bay Area local – is once again the odds-on favorite to become the next chair of the Federal Reserve, now that President Barack Obama’s preferred candidate, former adviser Larry Summers, has stepped out of the race.
With the majority of Americans – and many in the Bay Area – against the use of force in Syria, President Obama asked them Tuesday evening to have confidence in his judgment as commander in chief if he launches a strike despite their opposition.
President Obama said in a nationally televised address Tuesday evening that recent diplomatic steps offer “the potential to remove the threat of chemical weapons” inside Syria without the use of force, but he also insisted the U.S. military will keep the pressure on and be ready to respond” if other measures fail.
Federal officials on Tuesday released previously classified documents showing misuse of a domestic spying program in 2009.
U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said Monday that she continued to support President Obama’s proposed military strike against Syria. But Feinstein added that she was open to a suggestion by the Russian government to put Syria’s chemical weapons under international control.
President Barack Obama hasn’t said what he would do if Congress doesn’t authorize his request for a military strike against Syria; but if Bay Area politicians are any indication, the White House may not have the support it wants and needs.