Jennifer Bendery

As Pressure Builds, Short-Term CR Reality Sets In

House and Senate leaders could be forced to push through yet another stopgap spending measure this week if they are unable to hammer out a deal on a six-month plan by Tuesday, House lawmakers conceded Friday.

Negotiators are slowly closing in on an agreement on a six-month continuing resolution to fund the government beyond the April 8 deadline. But given the House’s three-day rule for publishing bills and the time it would take to actually write a bill, Republicans said a deal must be wrapped up by Tuesday at the latest.

Feingold to Obama: Fire Immelt

President Barack Obama is facing growing pressure from his left flank to oust the chairman of his job creation task force, Jeffrey Immelt.

Former Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) teamed up with and Progressives United on Wednesday to launch a petition to pressure the General Electric CEO to step down from his post on the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness. If that doesn’t work, liberals want Obama to ask for his resignation.

Obama Urges Reduction in Oil Imports

President Barack Obama pivoted to his comprehensive energy policy on Wednesday, calling for a one-third reduction in oil imports over the next decade.

During remarks at Georgetown University, the president said the U.S. must act now to find and produce more oil domestically, as well as lean on “clean energy sources” like nuclear power and clean coal technology. He also urged companies to make use of their existing leases for offshore drilling.

Schumer Emerges as GOP Target

Republicans have found a new foil in their war with the White House over the deficit and spending: Senate Democratic Conference Vice Chairman Charles Schumer.

Targeting the New York lawmaker has been relatively easy, Republicans say, since President Barack Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) have maintained relatively low profiles of late.

Obama Asserts ‘Responsibility’ to Act in Libya

President Barack Obama told the nation Monday night that he had no choice but to use military force in Libya in order to protect U.S. interests, in what was arguably his most important foreign policy speech to date.

“I am convinced that a failure to act in Libya would have carried a far greater price for America,” he said during remarks at the National Defense University in Washington, D.C.

White House Mum on Details of Libya Speech

Updated: 5:24 p.m.

White House officials are revealing little about what President Barack Obama might say in his Monday night speech on Libya, arguably the most important foreign policy address of his presidency.

Lawmakers Still Upset Despite Flurry of Libya Briefings

The White House’s effort to play catch-up with Congressional leaders on U.S. military intervention in Libya has done little to placate lawmakers who have become increasingly frustrated with President Barack Obama.

Obama and administration aides launched an aggressive Capitol Hill lobbying effort late last week, holding a last-minute bipartisan, bicameral briefing Friday, the day after announcing that administration officials would hold a classified briefing for House lawmakers Wednesday.

Carney Says White House Consulted Congress on Libya

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney on Thursday pushed back hard against criticisms that the administration did not consult with Congress before taking military action in Libya.

“Questions outlined by Members of Congress have by and large been answered” by President Barack Obama and other top administration officials, Carney said during a press briefing, his first full briefing since the U.S. began air strikes in Libya last week.

Bipartisan Unrest Grows Over U.S. Role in Libya

Updated: 5:38 p.m.

Rep. Dennis Kucinich said Monday that President Barack Obama is acting outside his power by authorizing military action in Libya and that he is reviewing legislative and parliamentary procedures available for ending U.S. involvement.

Pelosi Resuming Schedule After Hospitalization

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is resuming her schedule in Rome after a brief hospitalization for an undisclosed condition, her spokesman said Monday.

“After several flights yesterday in Afghanistan, and a long flight back to Italy that arrived early this morning, Leader Pelosi was not feeling well. This morning in Rome, the Leader was advised to visit a clinic, and the closest medical facility was a hospital. The Leader is now resuming her schedule in Italy,” Pelosi spokesman Nadeam Elshami said in a statement.

Report: Pelosi Hospitalized in Italy

Updated: 11:31 a.m.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was hospitalized Monday after feeling “slightly unwell” during a visit to Rome, the Agence-France Presse is reporting.

Obama Threatens Military Action in Libya

President Barack Obama gave an ultimatum to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi on Friday: Cease all violence against your people or prepare for United Nations-backed military action.

The U.S. “won’t stand idly by in the face of actions that undermine global peace and security,” Obama said during somber remarks at the White House. “Left unchecked, we have every reason to believe Gadhafi would commit atrocities against his own people” and the “entire region could be destabilized.”

Biden Hires Post Reporter as Press Aide

Vice President Joseph Biden is tapping another journalist to be his communications director: Washington Post reporter Shailagh Murray.

Biden announced Friday that Murray, a longtime Wall Street Journal reporter who has spent the past five years covering Capitol Hill for the Post, will succeed Jay Carney as his spokesperson. Carney, another veteran journalist, took over as White House press secretary last month.

Obama Briefing Hill Leaders on Libya

President Barack Obama is holding a hastily called meeting Friday with Congressional leaders to discuss Libya.

Obama is expected to use the 12:30 p.m. briefing, which is taking place in the Situation Room, to update Hill leaders on what military steps the United States and its allies will be taking to deal with the violent unrest in Libya. He will make a public statement on the matter at 2 p.m.

Clinton Says ‘No’ to Second Term

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton doesn’t want to serve a second term in her job and isn’t interested in running for president, she told CNN on Wednesday.

During an interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer in Cairo, Clinton said that if President Barack Obama is re-elected in 2012, she isn’t interested in keeping her post for another four years. The 2008 presidential candidate and former Senator also shot down rumors about becoming Defense secretary and running for president in 2016.

Partisanship Splits Panel on Climate Change

Every Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee voted Tuesday against amendments reaffirming that climate change is real and backed by scientific evidence.

GOP committee members unanimously voted down three Democratic amendments that call on Congress to accept the scientific basis for global warming. The amendments, supported by all the panel’s Democrats, were proposed amid debate on a GOP bill that would bar the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gas emissions.

Deal Possible for Education Reform
No Child Left Behind May Be One Area of Bipartisanship for Obama and GOP

Republicans and President Barack Obama may be able to leave partisanship behind when it comes to reforming the nation’s leading education law.

Obama on Monday called on lawmakers to send him legislation that revamps the nation’s No Child Left Behind Act before the next school year begins in late summer. During remarks at a middle school in Arlington, Va., he ticked off the reasons it is time for an overhaul of President George W. Bush’s signature education initiative, which many have said is in need of revisions.

Obama: Reform No Child Left Behind Act This Year

President Barack Obama will call on Congress on Monday morning to revamp the No Child Left Behind Act, the nation’s beleaguered education law, by the end of the summer, when the next school year kicks off.

In a speech at Kenmore Middle School in Arlington, Va., Obama will lay out his top three priorities for reforming President George W. Bush’s signature education initiative, which many have tagged as unworkable. Obama will call for creating a “fair” accountability system based on better testing, empowering teachers and innovating at state and local levels, and focusing on the schools and students most at risk.

Democrats Look to Twitter to Reverse Fortunes for 2012

Updated: 11:55 p.m.

Democrats are hoping they’ve found a secret weapon for winning back the House in 2012: Twitter.

Carney: White House Remains Engaged in Budget Standoff

White House officials continued to make the case Thursday that they are fully engaged in the budget standoff raging on Capitol Hill, despite criticisms from both sides of the aisle about their absence.

President Barack Obama tapped Vice President Joseph Biden last week as his point person for working with Hill leaders to negotiate a deal to fund the government for the rest of the fiscal year or at least past March 18, when the current continuing resolution expires. But Biden left for Europe for a week after his initial meeting with Congressional leaders, which has riled Democrats seeking White House help in reaching consensus with GOP leaders.