September 9, 2013

Syria adds to Congress' already heavy fall agenda

House Speaker John Boehner supports Obama's proposal to fire missiles into Syria but Republican rank-and-file opposition, however, is running strong.

By Charles Babington / The Associated Press

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"A lot of votes are going to have to get reversed to get passage," Kingston said in a phone interview from Georgia.

As for the debt limit increase, he said, it may have to be linked to more popular items, such as a major farm bill. Even then, Kingston said, "it's going to be a massive, fiscal cliff-like drama, as we're getting used to."

The fiscal cliff was the year-end budget scenario in which Boehner and other Republicans had to swallow tax increases for the wealthy in order to avoid higher tax rates for nearly everyone.

Another result of the partisan logjam on spending was the "sequester" cuts, which are chopping billions of dollars from federal budgets. Boehner and others are calling for still deeper cuts.

Kingston warned, however: "People don't realize what impact a second year of sequester will have on the military."

On top of all this, Republicans vow to keep hammering away at "Obamacare," even though there's no realistic way to block it so long as Democrats control the Senate and White House.

More than a third of House Republicans have urged Boehner to trigger a government shutdown rather than fund the implementation of the health care overhaul, enacted in 2010 without a single GOP vote.


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