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  • In this Feb. 12, 2014, photo, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., from left, Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, talk as they wait in the majority leader's office, for a meting King Abdullah II of Jordan, on Capitol Hill in Washington. The meeting came after lawmakers voted on must-pass legislation to increase the government's debt limit and after their leaders decided to drop the parliamentary equivalent of a curtain on the voting until its outcome was assured  (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

    Suspense In Senate: Debt Vote Shrouded In Secrecy

    WASHINGTON — Financial markets were watching, the retirement accounts of millions of Americans on the line.
    Nervous senators were watching too, well aware that political fortunes could be on the line.
    So on perhaps the most important vote of the year, the […]

  • FILE - In this Feb. 6, 2014 file photo, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. meets with reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington. Little more than a week after Groundhog Day, the evidence is mounting that lawmakers have all but wrapped up their most consequential work of 2014, at least until the results of the fall elections are known. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

    Senate Clears Debt Limit Measure For Obama

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Legislation to raise the federal debt limit and prevent a crippling government default cleared Congress on Wednesday with an awkward assist from top Senate Republican leaders who were forced into a politically treacherous vote engineered by tea […]

  • Cruz’s Demand Ensnares GOP Leaders On Debt Vote

    Cruz’s Demand Ensnares GOP Leaders On Debt Vote

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Texas Sen. Ted Cruz sat with eyes glued to his mobile device as the chaos he provoked ensnared his Republican leaders on the Senate floor.
    Legislation to raise the nation’s borrowing authority with no strings attached was short […]

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  • A man walks past the Capitol Building in Washington December 17, 2012. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

    U.S. House approves ‘Clean’ Debt Limit After Republicans Drop Demands

    WASHINGTON  – The U.S. House of Representatives narrowly approved a one-year extension of federal borrowing authority on Tuesday after Republicans caved into President Barack Obama’s demands to allow a debt limit increase without any conditions.
    The 221-201 vote, carried mainly by […]

  • Obama Speaks Out On Iran, Syria Struggles

    Obama Speaks Out On Iran, Syria Struggles

    WASHINGTON  — President Barack Obama weighed into two international struggles Tuesday, vowing to come down like “a ton of bricks” on firms that violate sanctions against Iran and acknowledging that Syrian peace talks are far from reaching their goal.
    “There’s enormous […]

  • FILE - In this Feb. 6, 2014 file photo, House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. In a concession to President Barack Obama and Democratic lawmakers, Boehner said Tuesday the House will vote to increase the government's borrowing cap without trying to attach conditions sought by some Republicans. "We'll let his party give him the debt ceiling increase that he wants," Boehner said, hours before the expected evening vote.  (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

    GOP To Advance ‘Clean’ Debt Limit Increase

    WASHINGTON  — In a concession to President Barack Obama and Democratic lawmakers, House Speaker John Boehner said Tuesday the House will vote to increase the government’s borrowing cap without trying to attach conditions sought by some Republicans. “We’ll let his […]

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  • FILE - This Nov. 27, 2013, file photo shows part of the HealthCare.gov website page featuring information about the SHOP Marketplace is photographed in Washington, on Nov. 27, 2013. Trying to limit election-year damage on health care, the Obama administration Monday, Feb. 10, 2014, granted business groups another delay in a much-criticized requirement that larger firms cover their workers or face fines. (AP Photo/Jon Elswick, File)

    Another Delay In Health Law’s Employer Requirement

    WASHINGTON  — Angling to avoid political peril, the Obama administration Monday granted employers another delay in a heavily criticized requirement that medium-to-larger firms cover their workers or face fines.
    In one of several concessions in a complex Treasury Department regulation of […]

  • VIDEO: 5 Olympians turned politicians

    VIDEO: 5 Olympians turned politicians

    From the Olympic arena to the political arena, here are five world-class athletes who became politicians.

  • House Conservatives Rule Out Immigration This Year

    House Conservatives Rule Out Immigration This Year

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Conservative Republicans on Wednesday ruled out any immigration legislation in the House this year, insisting that the GOP should wait until next year when the party might also control the Senate.
    House GOP leaders unveiled their broad immigration […]

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  • U.S. President Barack Obama has lunch with five supporters of Obamacare at The Coupe restaurant in Washington, January 10, 2014. From L-R are: Ann Johnson, Andre Cruz, Obama, Jasmine Hicks, Tommy McFly and David Dimock.    REUTERS/Larry Downing   (UNITED STATES)

    Health Care Law May Mean Fewer People On The Job

    WASHINGTON  — Several million American workers will cut back their hours on the job or leave the nation’s workforce entirely because of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, congressional analysts said Tuesday, adding fresh fuel to the political fight over […]

  • Senator Jack Reed (L) (D-RI) and U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) hold a news conference with unemployed Americans to highlight their political divide with Republicans over unemployment insurance legislation, at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, January 16, 2014. Efforts to renew emergency federal jobless benefits for 1.5 million Americans stalled in the Senate on Tuesday when Democrats and Republicans rejected each other's proposals. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst    (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS BUSINESS EMPLOYMENT)

    Senate Showdown Vote Set To Extend Unemployment Benefits

    WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Democrats on Tuesday set up a showdown vote with Republicans on a new bill to extend long-term unemployment benefits for 1.7 million Americans while making millionaires ineligible for such relief.
    Democrats hold the Senate, 55-45, but may […]

  • FILE  - In this Oct. 16, 2013 file photo, Larry Hasheider walks along one of his corn fields on his farm in Okawville, Ill. Cuts in food stamps, continued subsidies to farmers and victories for animal rights advocates. The massive farm bill heading toward final passage this week has broad implications for just about every American from the foods we eat to what we pay for them. Five things you should know about the legislation. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)

    Senate Set To Send Farm Bill To President Obama

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress is poised to send a massive, five-year farm bill that provides food for the needy and subsidies for the nation’s farmers to the White House for President Barack Obama’s signature.
    The Senate was expected to pass the […]

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  • New Jersey Governor Chris Christie sits on stage during the Super Bowl hand-off ceremony on Super Bowl Boulevard in Times Square, as part of the Super Bowl lead up in New York February 1, 2014. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT POLITICS FOOTBALL)

    N.J. Governor Christie Aides Face Subpoena Deadline In Bridge Scandal Probe

    NEW YORK  – Top aides to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie face a deadline on Monday to reply to document subpoenas made by state lawmakers investigating a traffic scandal that has threatened the Republican governor’s political future.
    Lawmakers are investigating an incident […]

  • Top Republicans Say They Stand By NJ Gov. Christie

    Top Republicans Say They Stand By NJ Gov. Christie

    High-profile Republicans were adamant Sunday that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie should not resign from his post as chairman of the Republican Governors Association after a recent claim from a former ally that there is evidence Christie knew about an […]

  • New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie speaks during a ceremony to pass official hosting duties of next year's Super Bowl to representatives from Arizona, Saturday Feb. 1, 2014 in New York. Fellow Republicans are assessing the damage of new allegations that Gov. Christie knew about a traffic-blocking operation orchestrated by top aides. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

    Christie Going On Offensive Over Accusation

    TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is going on the offensive after a former loyalist said he has evidence the Republican governor knew more than he has admitted about an apparently politically motivated traffic jam ordered by […]

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  • Obama Presidential Library Search Kicks Off

    Obama Presidential Library Search Kicks Off

    WASHINGTON  — The formal process to build a library housing President Barack Obama’s presidential records and artifacts began Friday with the formation of a new foundation, launched by top supporters with Obama’s blessing, that will develop and build the monument […]

  • File-This Jan. 11, 2014, file photo shows traffic passing through the toll booths at the George Washington Bridge, in Fort Lee, N.J.   Gov. Chris Christie made inaccurate statements during a news conference about the lane closures near the George Washington Bridge, according to a letter released Friday, Jan. 31, 2014,  by a lawyer for a former Christie loyalist who ordered the closures and resigned amid the ensuing scandal that has engulfed the New Jersey governor's administration. In the letter, David Wildstein's lawyer said his client "contests the accuracy of various statements that the governor made about him and he can prove the inaccuracy of some." (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

    Lawyer: Evidence Contradicts Christie On Bridge Lane Closures

    TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Gov. Chris Christie made inaccurate statements during a news conference about the lane closures near the George Washington Bridge, according to a letter released Friday by a lawyer for a former Christie loyalist who ordered the […]

  • FILE - In this March 11, 2013, file photo, a sign reading "Stop the Transcanada Pipeline" stands in a field near Bradshaw, Neb. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline will run through this field.  In a move that disappointed environmental groups and cheered the oil industry, the Obama administration on Jan. 31, 2014, said it had no major environmental objections to the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada.    (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

    Keystone XL Oil Pipeline Clears Significant Hurdle

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The long-delayed Keystone XL oil pipeline cleared a major hurdle toward approval Friday, a serious blow to environmentalists’ hopes that President Barack Obama will block the controversial project running more than 1,000 miles from Canada through the […]

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  • New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, right, speaks while NFL comissioner Roger Goodell, center, and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, left, look on during a ceremony unveiling the Roman numerals for Super Bowl XLVIII on Super Bowl Boulevard Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014, in New York. The Seattle Seahawks are scheduled to play the Denver Broncos in the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game on Sunday, Feb. 2, in East Rutherford, N.J.  (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

    NYC Mayor Won’t Attend High-Priced Super Bowl

    NEW YORK — New York City is co-hosting the Super Bowl this weekend but its mayor will not attend the nation’s biggest sporting event.
    Bill de Blasio will not travel across the Hudson River to MetLife Stadium on Sunday to watch […]

  • U.S. President Barack Obama speaks after a tour of the U.S. Steel Irvin Plant in West Mifflin, Pennsylvania, January 29, 2014.    REUTERS/Larry Downing   (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS BUSINESS)

    On Policy Tour, Obama Pledges To Revamp Job Training

    WAUKESHA, Wisc – President Barack Obama promised to overhaul federal jobs training programs on Thursday on the second leg of a tour intended to highlight his proposals to improve the fortunes of low- and middle-income Americans.
    Obama traveled to Wisconsin to […]

  • President Barack Obama signs a memorandum directing the Treasury Department to create a new retirement saving account after speaking at the U.S. Steel Irvin Plant, Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014, in West Mifflin, Pa., about retirement policies he highlighted in the State of the Union address. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

    Obama Executive Omissions Leave Some Allies Angry

    WASHINGTON (AP) — For some White House allies, the long list of executive actions President Barack Obama announced in his State of the Union address was marred by a few glaring omissions.
    Gay rights advocates are seething over Obama’s refusal to […]

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  • NY Congressman Threatens Reporter At Capitol

    NY Congressman Threatens Reporter At Capitol

    WASHINGTON  — New York Rep. Michael Grimm is defending his actions after he physically threatened a reporter at the Capitol after President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address.
    The confrontation began Tuesday when Michael Scotto, a reporter for New York […]

  • President Barack Obama gives his State of the Union address on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday Jan. 28, 2014, as Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, listen. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

    Obama Vows To Flex Presidential Powers In Speech

    WASHINGTON  — Seeking to energize his sluggish second term, President Barack Obama vowed Tuesday night in his State of the Union address to sidestep Congress “whenever and wherever” necessary to narrow economic disparities between America’s rich and poor.
    He unveiled an […]

  • President Barack Obama delivers the State of Union address before a joint session of Congress in the House chamber Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Washington. (AP Photo/Larry Downing, Pool)

    FACT CHECK: Obama And Medicare Premiums

    WASHINGTON — It seems to be something of an occupational hazard for President Barack Obama: When he talks about his health care law, he’s bound to hit a fact bump sooner or later.
    So it went Tuesday night, when he declared […]

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  • President Barack Obama walks along the Colonnade at the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, hours before giving his State of the Union Address before a joint session of Congress. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

    Obama Vows To Act ‘Wherever And Whenever’ He Can

    WASHINGTON — Declaring that upward economic mobility has stalled for millions of Americans, President Barack Obama is challenging a deeply divided Congress to restore the nation’s belief in “opportunity for all” – while telling lawmakers he will act on his […]

  • Tuesday night's State of the Union speech. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

    Obama Vowing To Flex Presidential Powers In Speech

    WASHINGTON  — Frustrated by years of partisan gridlock, President Barack Obama is moving to flex his presidential powers during his sixth year in office. He’s starting by using Tuesday night’s State of the Union address to announce executive actions to […]

  • FILE - In this Feb. 12, 2013, file photo, President Barack Obama waves and House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio applauds after the president gave his State of the Union address during a joint session of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, Pool)

    White House Warns Obama Could Go Around Congress

    WASHINGTON  — President Barack Obama will work with Congress where he can and circumvent lawmakers where he must, his top advisers warned Sunday in previewing Tuesday’s State of the Union speech.
    Obama faces a politically divided Congress on Tuesday and will […]

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  • Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife Maureen arrive at the U.S. District Court in Richmond on Friday, Jan. 24, 2014, for his and his wife Maureen's bond hearing and arraignment on Friday, Jan. 24, 2014 on federal corruption charges. Federal prosecutors allege that the McDonnells accepted more than $165,000 worth of loans and gifts from Jonnie Williams, the former head of Star Scientific Inc.  (AP Photo/The Virginian-Pilot, Steve Earley)  MAGS OUT

    Former VA. Gov. McDonnell, Wife Plead Not Guilty

    RICHMOND, Va. — Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife pleaded not guilty Friday to federal charges that they traded their influence for tens of thousands of dollars in gifts and loans, and both will be allowed to remain […]

  • RE-TRANSMISSION FOR IMPROVED TONING - As wife Mary Pat Christie holds the Bible, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is sworn in for his second term by New Jersey Supreme Court Chief Justice Stuart Rabner, right,  Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014, in Trenton, N.J.  Mired in a scandal,  Christie sought to turn back the clock Tuesday and focus on the mandate he said he got in November to "stay the course" and put aside differences, even as Democrats ramped up an investigation into whether his administration abused its power.  (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

    Feds Subpoena NJ Gov. Christie’s Campaign, GOP

    TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Federal prosecutors have escalated their criminal investigation into allegations that Gov. Chris Christie’s aides created traffic jams as political payback, subpoenaing his re-election campaign and the state Republican leadership.
    The subpoenas seek documents related to the closure […]

  • FILE - This Oct. 13, 2012 file photo shows Fox News commentator and author Bill O'Reilly at the Comedy Central "Night Of Too Many Stars: America Comes Together For Autism Programs" at the Beacon Theatre in New York. President Barack Obama will be interviewed live at the White House by Fox News’ O’Reilly during the Super Bowl pregame show. Fox said Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014, the interview will air at 4:30 p.m., less than two hours before the game, which is being televised on Feb. 2 by the Fox broadcast network.  (Photo by Frank Micelotta/Invsion/AP, file)

    Fox’s O’Reilly To Interview Obama

    NEW YORK  — President Barack Obama will be interviewed live at the White House by Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly during the Super Bowl pregame show.
    Fox said Thursday the interview will air at 4:30 p.m., less than two hours before the […]

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  • FILE - In this Feb. 9, 2009, file photo, President Barack Obama laughs during his first prime time televised news conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington.  Five years into his presidency, the verdict on Obama is: nice guy, so-so president. A new AP-GfK Poll finds that less than a third of Americans consider Obama to be an above-average president. But nearly twice as many find him likable. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)

    Poll: People See Obama As Nice Guy …

    WASHINGTON  — Nice guy, so-so president.
    Taking stock of President Barack Obama at the five-year mark in his term, less than a third of Americans consider him to be an above-average chief executive. Nearly twice as many find him likable.
    A new […]

  • Obama Targets College Sexual Assault Epidemic

    Obama Targets College Sexual Assault Epidemic

    WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama is launching an initiative to combat sexual assault on college campuses, turning the spotlight on a problem that has devastated millions of Americans yet rarely receives such White House attention.
    Obama planned to sign a presidential […]

  • Richmond, Va., Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014.  McDonnell and his wife were indicted Tuesday on corruption charges after a monthslong federal investigation into gifts the Republican received from a political donor.  (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

    Former Va. Gov,Wife Indicted For Corruption

    RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Bob McDonnell had just been elected governor of Virginia when a wealthy businessman who had donated the use of his private jet during the Republican’s campaign requested a meeting at the Four Seasons Hotel in New […]

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  • FILE  - In this Tuesday Dec. 10 2013, file photo, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford attends a news conference at City Hall in Toronto. A new video of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford emerged Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014, that shows him swearing and slurring his words while apparently trying to imitate a Jamaican accent.   (AP Photo/The Canadian Press Chris Young, File)

    New Videos Of Toronto Mayor Emerge

    TORONTO — A new video of Mayor Rob Ford emerged Tuesday that shows him swearing and slurring his words while apparently trying to imitate a Jamaican accent.
    In the video – one of two new ones that have been posted on […]

  • Governor Bob McDonnell and First Lady Maureen McDonnell

    Former Va. Gov. Bob McDonnell, Wife Indicted

    RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife were indicted Tuesday on corruption charges after a months long federal investigation into gifts the Republican received from a political donor.
    The 14-count indictment against McDonnell and his wife, […]

  • New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie shakes hands as he leaves a prayer service in celebration of his inauguration at the New Hope Baptist Church on Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014 in Newark.  The celebrations to mark the start of Christie's second term could be tempered by investigations into traffic tie-ups that appear to have been ordered by his staff for political retribution and an allegation that his administration linked Superstorm Sandy aid to approval for a real estate project.  (AP Photo/Rich Schultz)

    Scandal-Worried Gov. Christie Sworn Into 2nd Term

    TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Gov. Chris Christie was sworn into office Tuesday for a second term, saying he had a mandate to stay the course even as Democrats ramp up criticism of the Republican governor amid investigations of a bridge […]

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  • File- This Jan. 19, 2010, file photo shows New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie speaking during his inauguration ceremony,  in Trenton, N.J. A day of celebration at the start of Gov. Christie’s second term could be tempered by multiple investigations into traffic tie-ups that appear to have been ordered by his staff for political retribution.  The governor is still holding all the customary events the Tuesday Jan. 21, 2014,  inauguration.  (AP Photo/Mel Evans, File)

    NJ Gov. Christie Cancels Party Because Of Weather

    TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Gov. Chris Christie, who starts a second term with multiple investigations into his administration’s tactics underway, will accentuate bipartisanship and diversity in his inaugural speech Tuesday.
    “We have to be willing to play outside the red and […]

  • President Barack Obama and his daughter Sasha, right, make burritos at DC Central Kitchen as part of a service project in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day,  Monday, Jan. 20, 2014, in Washington. Also helping were first lady Michelle Obama and daughter Malia Obama. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

    Obama To Meet With Pope Francis In March

    WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama will meet with Pope Francis at the Vatican as part of a European trip scheduled for March.
    The White House says Obama “looks forward to discussing with Pope Francis their shared commitment to fighting poverty and […]

  • New Jersey Assemblymen John S. Wisniewski, center, D-Sayreville, N.J., Lou D. Greenwald, left, D-Vorhees, N.J., and incoming Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto, D-Secaucus, N.J., address the media Monday, Jan. 13, 2014, in Trenton, N.J.  Greenwald,  says an investigation into massive local traffic jams that has ensnared Gov. Chris Christie's administration has grown into an abuse of power probe.  (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

    NJ Mayor: Sandy Aid Ultimatum Came From Christie

    TRENTON, N.J.  — The Democratic mayor of a town severely flooded by Superstorm Sandy said Sunday that she was told an ultimatum tying recovery funds to her support for a prime real estate project came directly from Republican Gov. Chris […]

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