By Tom McCarthy
Health secretary faces another grilling on Capitol Hill as signups to health plans increase substantially in October
Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta won a confidence vote in the lower house as expected on Wednesday, clearing the first hurdle to confirming his parliamentary majority ahead of a vote in the Senate later in the day. Letta, head of a coalition between the center-left Democratic Party and smaller centrist and center-right parties, asked parliament to back a broad program of reforms which he said would lift Italy’s stagnant economy after two years of recession. He called the confidence vote to confirm his majority after Silvio Berlusconi, now banned from parliament, ended seven months of cooperation with the center-left by …read more
By James Mackenzie ROME (Reuters) – Prime Minister Enrico Letta called on parliament on Wednesday to back his government or risk chaos as he sought to push through long-avoided reforms intended to revive Italy’s economy after two years of recession. Opening a debate in the lower house before his third confidence vote since October, Letta said Italy had avoided reforms for 20 years and could no longer afford to delay, with protests across the country this week underlining the bitter public mood after years of painful attempts to squeeze costs and boost revenues. I won’t give in to those who …read more
By Jane C. Timm
Fiscal conservatives are balking at the budget deal this week, frustrated by the deal’s easing of sequester levels.
“I’m real disappointed in the deal,” Sen. Tom Coburn said on Wednesday’s Morning Joe. “I’m sure it’s the best Paul could get, but it’s not anything I can support.”
We know this dance well—in October, it ended only after a 16-day federal government shutdown—and there’s no indication yet whether the rest of Congress will accept the deal negotiated by Washington’s Sen. Patty Murray and Wisconsin’s Rep. Paul Ryan.
Coburn plans to vote against it.
Congress could see a vote as soon as the end of this …read more
It’s official: Pope Francis is TIME Magazine’s “Person of the Year,” beating out National Security Agency whistle-blower, Edward Snowden.
“He has in a very short time changed the tone and the focus of the perception of one of the world’s most largest institutions,” Nancy Gibbs, managing editor of TIME, said Wednesday on Morning Joe. ”I don’t know if we’ve ever seen anyone capture everyone’s imagination so broadly and so completely as the Pope has.”