Oct. 16 - By a vote of 81 to 18 the U.S. Senate passes bill to avert government default; sends measure to House. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: By a vote of 81 to 18 the U.S. Senate passed a bill to avert government default and sent the measure to the House of Representatives. U.S. Senate leaders announced a deal on Wednesday to end a political crisis that partially shut down the federal government and brought the world's biggest economy close to a debt default that could have threatened global financial calamity. The deal, however, offers only a temporary fix and does not resolve the fundamental issues of spending and deficits that divide Republicans and Democrats. It funds the government until January 15, so Americans face the possibility of another government shutdown early next year. A stand-off between Republicans and the White House over funding the government forced the temporary lay-off of hundreds of thousands of federal workers from October 1 and created concern that crisis-driven politics was the "new normal" in Washington. The deal would extend U.S. borrowing authority until February 7, although the Treasury Department would have tools to temporarily extend its borrowing capacity beyond that date if Congress failed to act early next year. The deal would fund government agencies until the middle of January. House Speaker John Boehner said Republicans in the House would not block the Senate plan. If the House passes the plan, it will clear the way for Obama to sign it into law before Thursday, when the Treasury says it will exhaust its borrowing authority.