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US, Europe impose tough new sanctions on Russia Video included


Spurred to action by the downing of the Malaysian airliner, the European Union approved dramatically tougher economic sanctions Tuesday against Russia, including an arms embargo and restrictions on state-owned banks.... More>>

UN rights chief: Flight 17 possible war crime

(AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda). An emergency worker cuts through aircraft seat belts to free the body of a victim at the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 near the village of Hrabove, eastern Ukraine, Saturday, July 19, 2014. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda). An emergency worker cuts through aircraft seat belts to free the body of a victim at the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 near the village of Hrabove, eastern Ukraine, Saturday, July 19, 2014.

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay says the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 may be a war crime. More>>

Gaza fighting rages amid cease-fire bid

(AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis). Smoke from an Israeli strike rises over Gaza City, Tuesday, July 22, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis). Smoke from an Israeli strike rises over Gaza City, Tuesday, July 22, 2014.

Gaza health officials say the death toll from an Israeli strike on a compound housing a U.N. school in the northern Gaza Strip has risen to at least 15. More>>

Kerry says progress in Gaza cease-fire talks

Secretary of State John Kerry says negotiations toward a cease-fire agreement in the Gaza Strip are making some progress after days of a deadly impasse between Israel and Hamas militants. More>>

UPDATE: Kerry: Cease-fire isn't enough

(AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis). Smoke from an Israeli strike rises over Gaza City, Tuesday, July 22, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis). Smoke from an Israeli strike rises over Gaza City, Tuesday, July 22, 2014.

The immediate goal is a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas -- but Secretary of State John Kerry says, "Just reaching a cease-fire is clearly not enough." More>>

Gaza death toll rises as truce effort intensifies Video included


A high-level attempt by the U.N. chief and the U.S. secretary of state to end deadly Israel-Hamas fighting was off to a rough start Monday: Gaza's Hamas rulers signaled they won't agree to an unconditional... More>>

Obama: Plane shot down by missile, 1 American dead

The United States began building a case Friday that would pin the blame for the downing of the passenger jet over Ukraine on separatist forces supported by Russia. President Barack Obama said one American was among the nearly 300 killed in an disaster that could dramatically escalate the crisis in Ukraine. More>>

Climate politics group falling short of money goal

A super PAC backed by environmentalist billionaire Tom Steyer is falling far short of its goal to raise $100 million to put climate change at the forefront of the 2014 midterm elections. More>>

Minnesota governor's race eases into TV ad phase

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -- Republican candidate Scott Honour has put up a round of television ads ahead of next month's primary election to determine his party's nominee for governor.Honour adviser Pat Shortridge says the ads are airing statewide on cable television, specifically the Fox News Channel. That station is viewed as prime ground to connect with GOP voters. The businessman is spending up to $20,000 for the initial run of his no-frills ads, where he presents himself as an outsider.He's ... More>>

EEOC issues new guidelines for pregnant workers

For the first time in 30 years, the federal government is issuing new guidelines designed to protect pregnant workers from on-the-job discrimination. More>>

Obama to press for action on transportation funds

President Barack Obama will press Congress this week to keep highway and transit aid flowing to states. More>>

Fall elections loom over governors' meeting

Partisan divisions over immigration, education and health care are intensifying as dozens of the nation's governors meet just months before elections thick with presidential implications. More>>

US seeks better teachers for high-needs schools

The Education Department is announcing a new initiative to attract quality teachers to the schools that need them most. More>>

Justices to take up pregnancy discrimination case

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Supreme Court will take up the pregnancy discrimination claims of a package delivery driver for UPS who was refused a light duty assignment so she could continue working while pregnant.UPS driver Peggy Young lost her health benefits when UPS would not grant her light duty or allow her to continue her regular job. Young says the company allows employees with some medical conditions to perform jobs in which they can avoid lifting heavy packages. She returned to work after... More>>

Iraqi PM calls on Iraqi politicians to unite

Iraq's prime minister is calling on his nation's political blocs to close ranks in the face of Sunni militants but gave no concrete promise of greater political inclusiveness for minority Sunnis. More>>

IRS head says no laws broken in loss of emails

The head of the IRS says he's seen no evidence anyone committed a crime when the agency lost emails that might shed light on the agency's targeting of political groups. More>>

Obama encouraging family-friendly work policies

President Barack Obama is encouraging more employers to adopt family-friendly policies by hosting a daylong summit. More>>

House Democrats' campaign arm raises $7.3M in May

House Democrats' campaign arm says it raised $7.3 million last month. More>>

Religious conservatives to judge top Republicans

Some of the Republican Party's most ambitious leaders are courting religious conservatives as evangelical officials claim new momentum in their fight for the GOP's soul. More>>

Pentagon: Benghazi suspect in US custody

A Libyan militant who is suspected in the Benghazi attack is now in U.S. custody. That announcement from the Pentagon marks the first time the U.S. has apprehended one of the people who allegedly carried out that attack -- which killed U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans. More>>

Kerry: US open to talks with Iran over Iraq

Secretary of State John Kerry says the Obama administration is willing to talk with Iran over deteriorating security conditions in Iraq and is not ruling out potential U.S.-Iranian military cooperation in stemming the advance of Sunni extremists.

Romney tries to re-emerge as force in GOP politics

Mitt Romney once feared that he would be viewed as "a loser for life" if he failed to win the presidency. In this midterm election year, the former presidential nominee is trying to re-emerge as a force in Republican politics. More>>

Tea party rejoicing at Cantor's defeat

Still in shock at the defeat of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, his colleagues are offering post mortems and hoping it's not contagious. More>>

College presidents express support for Common Core

Higher education leaders in 33 states have announced the formation of a coalition in support of Common Core standards rolling out in most states. More>>

Audit: Over 57,000 awaiting initial appointments

The Veterans Affairs Department says more than 57,000 patients are still waiting for initial medical appointments at VA hospitals and clinics 90 days or more after requesting them.

UPDATE: Obama, Putin meet; 1st time since Ukraine crisis

The White House says President Barack Obama has spoken with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the margins of a lunch for world leaders during D-Day commemorations in France. More>>

Ukraine diplomacy kicks into high gear at G-7

Diplomatic efforts to resolve the months-long standoff between Ukraine and Russia are kicking into high gear in two European capitals. More>>

Last day to file for office in Minnesota arrives

The last day to enter the hunt for a state, federal or judicial office in Minnesota has arrived.Candidates have until 5 p.m. Tuesday to file for office. More>>

EPA to seek to cut power plant carbon by one-third

The first national limits on carbon dioxide, seen as a major contributor to global warming, could be final by next year. More>>

House Democrats' campaign arm reserves $44M in ads

House Democrats are ready to empty their deep pockets for television ads as they continue an uphill climb to oust Republicans from their majority. More>>

RNC files lawsuit to raise unlimited cash

The Republican National Committee is suing the Federal Election Commission so it can raise unlimited cash would help federal candijust like super PACs. More>>

Being a Minnesota candidate requires signup soon

Everybody who has ever wanted their name on an election ballot in Minnesota can take that step for the next two weeks. More>>

House Dems' campaign arm raises $7.1M in April

House Democrats' campaign arm raised $7.1 million in April and has more than $43 million in the bank. More>>

Senate GOP committee raises $6m in April

By PHILIP ELLIOTTAssociated PressWASHINGTON (AP) -- The Republican committee that helps elect senators raised more than $6 million in April.The National Republican Senatorial Committee has almost $22 million in the bank. The committee released a fundraising summary Friday showing it has raised close to $60 million for this election cycle. The committee reports carrying no debt.The Democratic senatorial committee is expected to release its totals next week. The group ended March with about $22... More>>

US official: Russia could face more sanctions

A senior State Department official says that if Russia plays a role in disrupting the May 25 presidential election in Ukraine, the U.S. and European Union will move to impose additional economic sanctions against Moscow. More>>

UN: Wars internally displace 33.3 million in 2013

United Nations and Norwegian officials say a record 33.3 million people worldwide were displaced by conflict and violence inside their own nations in 2013. More>>

Availability of state-funded pre-K varies widely

A new report says the availability of state-funded pre-kindergarten programs varies widely from one part of the country to another. More>>

Putin hails annexation of Crimea

President Vladimir Putin has hailed Crimea's incorporation into Russia. More>>

Obama taps tech world for cash amid privacy debate

President Barack Obama is attending high-dollar Democratic Party fundraisers hosted by Silicon Valley executives, drawing attention to the complicated relationship between the president and the high-tech industry. More>>

US sees no sign of troop pullback

A Pentagon spokesman says if Russian troops were really pulling back from the border with Ukraine, then "we would know."

UPDATE: Federal report says warming is disrupting Americans' lives

A new federal scientific report says global warming is rapidly turning America the beautiful into America the stormy, sneezy and dangerous. And those shining seas? Rising and costly. More>>

UPDATE: Fighting in east Ukraine kills 4 troops, wounds 30

Ukraine's military appears to be stepping up its efforts to bring eastern and southern Ukraine back under government control. More>>

In South Sudan, Kerry calls for end to violence

South Sudan's president has agreed to meet with his rival as soon as next week to jumpstart peace talks that have been stalled for months and possibly lay groundwork for a new government to bring the world's newest nation out of bloodshed. More>>

Former Justice Stevens to talk campaign finance

Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens is among those urging Congress to rein in spending on elections. More>>

Chamber's ad buy aims to lift establishment GOP

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is launching ads this week in North Carolina and Georgia in a crunch-time effort to help establishment-backed Republicans in crowded Senate primaries. More>>

Possible GOP presidential candidates to court NRA

Several potential Republican contenders for president will court gun-rights supporters at the NRA's annual convention.Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum are set to speak Friday at the convention's leadership forum. More>>

Obama dines at famous sushi restaurant

Tomorrow, President Barack Obama holds bilateral talks in Tokyo with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. More>>

Streaming TV case before Supreme Court on Tuesday

The Supreme Court is taking up a dispute between broadcasters and an Internet startup company that has the potential to bring big changes to the television industry. More>>

White House sets no deadline for Russia on Ukraine

The White House says the U.S. government is still trying to determine who was responsible for Sunday's deadly shootout in eastern Ukraine and did not specify when Russia would have to meet the terms of a Geneva agreement for containing tensions in the former Soviet state. More>>

Advice to Democrats: Don't say `recovery'

Election-year memo to Democratic candidates: Don't talk about the economic recovery. It's a political loser. More>>

Obama praises Biden, but doesn't endorse for 2016

President Barack Obama is keeping to himself his favorite to succeed him in the White House. More>>

Obama, Biden to announce $600M for job grants

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden are hitting the road to trumpet $600 million in new competitive grants to spur creation of targeted training and apprenticeship programs that could help people land well-paying jobs. More>>

Holder urges approval of $15M for shooter training

Attorney General Eric Holder is urging Congress to approve $15 million for training law enforcement officers in handling shooting rampages. More>>

Obama, Republicans compete for support among women

President Barack Obama and the Republican Party already are competing hard for the support of women in the November elections. More>>

Sebelius, a lightning rod for critics, resigns

For five years, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has been a lightning rod for critics of President Barack Obama's health care law. More>>

House panel to hold contempt vote on IRS official

A House committee is voting whether to hold a former Internal Revenue Service official in contempt of Congress for refusing to answer questions at a pair of hearings. More>>

Reprising grim role, Obama to grieve at Fort Hood

President Barack Obama is returning once again to a grief-stricken corner of America to mourn with families of those killed last week at Fort Hood. He's reprising his role as chief comforter as he offers solace to the nation in the face of another tragedy. More>>

Research: Most states improve election performance

A new report by a nonpartisan public policy group says Americans spent an average of three minutes less standing in line to vote in the 2012 presidential election than they did four years earlier. An exception was Florida, where the wait increased by 16 minutes. More>>

GM on the hot seat

The new CEO for General Motors is headed to Capitol Hill today to answer questions about the defect in some of the automaker's small cars that's linked to 13 deaths. More>>

Kerry to meet with Palestinian leader in Jordan

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has arrived in Jordan for a meeting with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas as foundering Mideast peace talks approach a critical deadline. More>>

Democrats see openings in congressional departures

House Democrats' hopes of mitigating the damage in the midterm elections lie in the suburbs of Virginia, near the covered bridges of Iowa's Madison County and near New Jersey's Pine Barrens. More>>

Reid asks for computer examination in CIA dispute

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has asked the Senate's chief law enforcement officer to examine the Intelligence Committee's computers. More>>

Biden says more sanctions coming for Russia

Vice President Joe Biden says the world has seen through Russia's actions in Crimea and will impose more sanctions on Russia. More>>

Crimea moves to integrate financially with Russia

Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula is taking steps to integrate its financial system with Russia's - including adopting the ruble currency - after the region overwhelmingly voted in favor of seceding and seeking to join Russia. More>>

APNewsBreak: Candidate faces challenge after OWI

A Democrat running for the Iowa Senate is facing a challenge to his candidacy that claims he's been disqualified to serve after a recent operating while intoxicated conviction. More>>

CIA lawyer at center of computer snooping clash

The CIA lawyer accused by the head of the Senate Intelligence Committee of trying to intimidate the panel over its probe of the agency's secret prisons and harsh interrogations of terror suspects was himself involved in the controversial programs. More>>

Senate OKs bill to combat military sexual assault

The Senate overwhelmingly approved a bill late Monday making big changes in the military justice system to deal with sexual assault, including scrapping the nearly century-old practice of using a "good soldier defense" to raise doubts that a crime has been committed. More>>

Obama discusses Ukraine with Chinese leader

President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping have agreed on the importance of upholding Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity. More>>

Congress rushing to put in place Russia sanctions

Congress is rushing to put in place hard-hitting sanctions on Russia in response to its takeover of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula, hoping Europe will follow the lead of the United States in upping the pressure on President Vladimir Putin's government. More>>

GOP, deficit hawks pan Obama's $3.9T budget

Republicans are dismissing President Barack Obama's new $3.9 trillion budget as nothing more than a Democratic manifesto for this fall's congressional campaigns. More>>

Obama 2015 budget focuses on boosting economy

President Barack Obama is unwrapping a nearly $4 trillion budget that gives Democrats an election-year playbook for fortifying the economy and bolstering Americans' incomes. It also underscores how pressure has faded to launch bold, new attacks on federal deficits. More>>

Obama, Netanyahu to meet on Iran, Mideast peace

President Barack Obama will personally appeal today to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to move forward on peace talks with the Palestinians.

White House to host first student film festival

Two days before attention shifts to the Academy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles, the White House is trying to create a little buzz for America's future filmmakers. More>>

Obama seeks more federal spending to train doctors

President Barack Obama will ask Congress to approve spending more than $5 billion on medical training to turn out some 13,000 primary care providers over the next 10 years. More>>

Obama seeking $300 billion for roads, railways

President Barack Obama is asking Congress for $300 billion to update the nation's roads and railways. More>>

Obama invites Boehner to White House meeting

President Barack Obama has reached out to House Speaker John Boehner for a rare one-on-one meeting between the political rivals. More>>

Obama looks to governors for help with economy

His domestic priorities stalled in a divided Congress, President Barack Obama is looking for allies among America's governors. More>>

Obama pitches minimum wage hike with Dem governors

President Barack Obama is promoting his effort to raise the minimum wage to Democratic governors. More>>

Obama's N. American agenda hits congressional drag

President Barack Obama heads into a summit with Mexican and Canadian leaders eager to engage on issues of trade and other neighbor-to-neighbor interests, even as Congress is placing a drag on some of his top cross-border agenda items. More>>

NSA surveillance exposes political party divisions

The debate about whether to continue the dragnet surveillance of Americans' phone records is highlighting divisions within the Democratic and Republican parties that could transform the politics of national security. More>>

Kerry visits UAE for talks on Syria

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is in Abu Dhabi for discussions with Emirati officials on the deteriorating situation in Syria, nuclear talks with Iran and the Middle East peace process. More>>

Vulnerable Democrats try straddle on `Obamacare'

Democrats in tough re-election races are performing a high-stakes political straddle as they try to fend off attacks over President Barack Obama's signature health care law. More>>

GOP: We're the 'alternative party'

House Republicans are pushing a new message: We have ideas too. More>>

House GOP leaders urge Obama, Dems to act on bills

House Republican leaders challenged the White House and Democrats to work "without further delay" on four bills that are stalled in the Senate, saying their passage would constitute a good start on President Barack Obama's call for a year of action in his State of the Union address. More>>

Analysis: Obama's agenda more bite-sized than bold

The president's State of the Union address Tuesday was an amalgam of modest proposals designed to chip away at some of the same problems he's been working on all along: persistent unemployment, middle-class insecurity, lagging schools and more. More>>

Popular apps help consumers manage finances

We live in a world of constant convenience and when it comes to managing your finances, there's an app for that. Meghan Wilker, the Chief Operating Officer for all things app at Clockwork Media Systems in Minneapolis, is talking about the app Mint. More>>

Boston bomb survivors are guests at Obama speech

Two survivors of the Boston Marathon bombing and an openly gay NBA player are among the guests who will sit with first lady Michelle Obama Tuesday when President Barack Obama delivers the annual State of the Union address. More>>

Divided Egypt marks 3rd anniversary of uprising

With dancing horses and traditional folklore music, supporters of the military-backed government celebrated and called on the army chief to run for president in rallies marking the third anniversary of the country's 2011 uprising, as security forces firing tear gas battled rival demonstrations, both by supporters of ousted Islamist President Mohammed Morsi and by secular activists opposed to both camps. More>>

Huckabee's comments on birth control gift for Dems

Mike Huckabee's comments about contraception proved quick fodder for Democrats and a headache for Republicans trying to market themselves as a better choice for female voters who have proved elusive to the GOP. More>>

Poll: People see Obama as nice guy, so-so prez

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. More>>

Obama and Putin talk Sochi security, Syria

President Barack Obama spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin Tuesday amid safety concerns about the upcoming Olympic games in Sochi. More>>

Obama applauded for backing surveillance

The heads of the House and Senate intelligence committees applauded President Barack Obama's defense of the National Security Agency in his speech Friday proposing reforms to the spy agency. More>>

GOP image still muddled, a year after suggestions

The Republican Party's image has changed little in the year since GOP Chairman Reince Priebus published his prescription for broadening the party's appeal despite its investment in outreach to the racial minorities, women and gay voters who backed Democrats decisively in 2012. More>>

First lady at 50: What's Michelle Obama's next move?

Michelle Obama, who turned 50 on Friday, is only just starting to build her legacy. Presidential historians expect her commitment to fighting childhood obesity, supporting military families and encouraging good education and volunteer work to deepen in the next couple of years, and anticipate she will fully devote herself to those issues after she and her family leave the White House. More>>

House retirements shrink the political center

Retirements are shrinking the political center in Congress as the fall elections force an answer to the question, "Should I stay or should I go?" More>>

Obama: On economy, focus is on executive actions

Calling for "all hands on deck" to assist the economy, President Barack Obama is urging his Cabinet to identify ways to keep his administration relevant to people struggling in the up-and-down recovery. More>>

GOP standing by NJ's Christie-- for now

The Republican establishment in early presidential nominating states is standing by Chris Christie -- so far. More>>

Questions still linger in Christie traffic jam fiasco

Even though he hosted a two-hour press conference Thursday in which he apologized for the event, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie still didn't totallly resolve the mystery behind the closing of lanes at the George Washington Bridge in September, creating a monster traffic jam that turned the city of Fort Lee into a parking lot for four days. More>>

White House defends against criticism in Gates' book

The White House is bristling over former Defense Secretary Robert Gates' new memoir accusing President Barack Obama of showing too little enthusiasm for the U.S. war mission in Afghanistan and sharply criticizing Vice President Joe Biden's foreign policy instincts. More>>

For Obama, Congress, a last grasp at immigration

His agenda tattered by last year's confrontations and missteps, President Barack Obama begins 2014 clinging to the hope of winning a lasting legislative achievement: an overhaul of immigration laws. More>>

Congress returns with hefty to-do list

They've been away from Washington for more than two weeks, but Congress is finally back on the job. Both chambers of Congress are back in earnest this week to begin the second year of a session noteworthy for its rancor and sluggish productivity. More>>

Different election, same playbook: Why 2014 will look a lot like 2012

In 2012, the electoral battle lines were clear: Democrats painted the race as a struggle between a dynamic incumbent and a lesser GOP foe, while Republicans made it a referendum on the president and his health care law. It's a playbook that both parties are reaching into for the 2014 midterm election, with Republicans and Democrats both looking to expand their influence on Capitol Hill. More>>

Poll: Americans have little faith in government

Americans enter 2014 with a profoundly negative view of their government, expressing little hope that elected officials can or will solve the nation's biggest problems, a new poll finds. More>>

Political stars to watch in 2014

With 35 senate races, 435 House races and 36 contests for governor on the ballot next fall, 2014 is certain to bring forward a new cast of political stars. More>>

Obama signs budget agreement

President Barack Obama signed a long-awaited budget agreement and a major defense spending bill into law on Thursday while vacationing in Hawaii. More>>

The oddest political moments of 2013

WASHINGTON (NBC News) -- In another year marked by a steady stream of gaffes, scandals, and strange controversies, the late night comedy pros have had no drought of material from Washington, D.C., as the More>>

NSA leaker: 'Mission's already accomplished'

National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden says his "mission's already accomplished" after leaking NSA secrets that have caused a reassessment of U.S. surveillance policies.

Congress sends defense bill to Obama

The women of the Senate who led the fight to change how the military deals with sexual assault in its ranks are hailing passage of a comprehensive defense bill that now heads to President Barack Obama for his signature. More>>

Top 10 Races to Watch of 2014

WASHINGTON (NBC News) -- Looking ahead to next year, the NBC News Political Unit takes a look at the Top 10 Races to Watch in 2014. In compiling the list, the crew looked at political races that had a More>>

White House greets budget deal with caution, hope

There were no champagne corks popping at the White House after Congress passed a two-year budget deal, no declarations of a new era of cooperation in President Barack Obama's second term. More>>

Obama huddles with tech execs

President Barack Obama huddled with top technology executives at the White House Tuesday, with the National Security Agency's surveillance programs atop the agenda. More>>

Budget deal splits GOP leaders in House, Senate

Senate Republican leaders are criticizing a bipartisan budget deal, parting ways with their House counterparts who shepherded the measure through that chamber last week. More>>

Senate appears ready to pass budget deal

WASHINGTON (NBC News) -- As we said on Friday, we've entered Bizarro Washington where the usually divided and almost-always partisan House of Representatives passes a budget deal by an overwhelming 332-94 More>>

Kerry returns to Vietnam, now as top US diplomat

John Kerry first set foot in Vietnam 44 years ago, a young U.S. Navy officer fighting in a war that would come to profoundly influence his political career and foreign policy thinking. More>>

Obama health care promise named 'Lie of the Year'

Fact-checking organization Politifact has named their "Lie of the Year," and it's bad news for the White House and the Affordable Care Act. More>>

Your guide to the budget deal compromise

Budget fights in Washington are rarely simple or without rancor. Some conservative groups have already begun attacking the compromise deal announced Tuesday, lobbing complaints Republican House Speaker John Boehner dismissed as "ridiculous." More>>

Democrats use new power to tilt appeals court

Majority Democrats in the Senate won approval Tuesday for one of President Barack Obama's key judicial nominees, the first of his picks to win confirmation since they weakened the chamber's filibuster rules. More>>

Will Obamacare sink Democrats in 2014?

Three years after President Barack Obama admitted that his party took a "shellacking" in the midterm elections, Republicans are setting their sights on another political wave in 2014. It's a new battle, but the GOP is using the same weapon: public skepticism over Obamacare. More>>

Obama: GOP should be 'embarrassed' by low productivity on Hill

Republicans ought to be "embarrassed" of their record low productivity during their time in charge of the House of Representatives, President Barack Obama said Thursday. More>>

GOP faces choices on Obamacare attack

After losing the last two presidential contests, after the damaging government shutdown, and the midst of a still-ongoing ideological battle inside the party, Republicans clearly have the political advantage when it comes to health care. More>>

Obama doubles down on health care

Seeking to move past its website woes, the Obama administration is launching a two-pronged health care strategy this month aimed at avoiding enrollment snafus come January while also trying to refocus the public's attention on broader benefits of the sweeping law. More>>

Did the feds fix HealthCare.gov?

Saturday was the deadline – the last day of November and the day the Obama administration promised its health insurance website would be working smoothly for "the vast majority" of people. More>>

Presidential turkey pardons, not as long a history as you might think

The annual ceremony of the presidential turkey pardon is so ingrained in the American Thanksgiving tradition that it might seem as old as the holiday itself. But the ritual of White House clemency for a pair of lucky fowl is actually relatively recent. More>>

Congress on track for one of the least productive years ever

It's not quite a "do nothing" Congress – but it's not far off. With only a handful of remaining legislative days on their calendar, this current Congress is on track to go down as one of the most unproductive in modern history. More>>

Obama declares Iran deal 'important first step'

President Barack Obama declared an interim nuclear deal with Iran an "important first step" that cuts off the Islamic republic's most likely path toward a bomb. More>>

White House urging Democrats to focus on economy

Eager to draw contrasts with Republicans, the White House is pushing its economic agenda as it attempts to give Democrats something to talk about other than the troubled health care rollout. More>>

GOP governors try to seize the party's mantle

Tired of being cast as members of the "party of no," Republican governors facing re-election next year are emphasizing their work to steer their states through tough economic times and trying to avoid the stigma of Washington gridlock. More>>

George W. Bush shows off paintings with Jay Leno

It may not be as priceless as a Picasso, but the painting Jay Leno received Tuesday will likely be valuable one day — because of the artist who gave it to him. More>>

Obama seeks 2nd chance for UN disabilities pact

The Obama administration is pushing for ratification of a U.N. accord on the rights of the disabled less than a year after Senate Republicans rejected pleas for its passage from two former GOP presidential nominees and delivered a stinging rebuke to a global treaty modeled largely on American law. More>>

White House pushes to loosen Gitmo transfer rules

President Barack Obama is pushing to overcome obstacles to closing the Guantanamo Bay prison, an elusive goal which has frustrated him since he took office. That is setting the White House on a collision course with Congress in its bid to loosen restrictions for moving out detainees. More>>

House GOP getting its say on cancellations

Republicans renewed an assault on President Barack Obama's health care law and his own credibility on Friday as they pushed toward House passage of a measure to let insurers keep offering health coverage that falls short of the law's standards. More>>

Obama seeks time from Congress for Iran diplomacy

The Obama administration is pleading with Congress to allow more time for diplomacy with Iran, but faces sharp resistance from Republican and Democratic lawmakers determined to further squeeze the Iranian economy and wary of yielding any ground in nuclear negotiations. More>>

Medicaid is health overhaul's early success story

The underdog of government health care programs is emerging as the rare early success story of President Barack Obama's technologically challenged health overhaul. More>>

Obama honors veterans at wreath laying, breakfast

President Barack Obama is paying tribute to America's veterans by laying a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery. More>>

Obama apologizes to people losing health coverage

Bowing to intense criticism, President Barack Obama apologized to Americans who are losing health insurance plans he repeatedly said they could keep and pledged to find fixes that might allow people to keep their coverage. More>>

Senators grapple with health care rollout woes

A senior government official declined to say Tuesday if the administration will support legislation to fulfill President Barack Obama's oft-stated promise that anyone who likes their health care plan will be able to keep it under the nation's new law. More>>

Congress governs self under 'Obamacare'

Think you're confused by "Obamacare"? It's roiling Capitol Hill behind the scenes, too. More>>

Spying tests trust between Obama, Merkel

The National Security Agency's secret spying scandal threatens to damage the close relationship between President Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, which, until now, has been defined by candor and trust. More>>

Cheney: Republicans need to look to new generation

Dick Cheney said Sunday that Republicans need to look to a new generation of leaders as the party deals with poor approval ratings following the government shutdown. More>>

Cruz caps post-shutdown tour with wary Iowans

Tea party Sen. Ted Cruz took nothing short of a victory lap in his state of Texas this week, appearing before wildly supportive crowds that overlooked the fact that the Republican who led the charge to kill money for President Barack Obama's health care law had failed. More>>

Obama calls for immigration law by end of the year

President Barack Obama called on Congress Thursday to finish work on an immigration overhaul by the end of the year, a lofty goal that will be difficult to meet given the staunch opposition of many House Republicans. More>>

Obama calls trusted fixer to help health care site

When a federal program that promised cash rebates to people who traded in their clunkers for more fuel-efficient vehicles was overrun by demand, President Barack Obama assigned Jeffrey Zients, his deputy budget director, to help eliminate the backlog. More>>

No safe bets for Obama despite toned-down agenda

Regrouping after a feud with Congress stalled his agenda, President Barack Obama is laying down a three-item to-do list for Congress that seems meager when compared with the bold, progressive agenda he envisioned at the start of his second term. More>>

Boehner's jam: Caucus loves him, but won't follow

House Republicans refuse to let their supposed leader, Speaker John Boehner, steer them toward big policy decisions, leaving him to endure repeated public embarrassments. Yet they rally around Boehner as much as ever, affirming his hold on the speakership Wednesday. More>>

Senators seek budget deal, House GOP effort flops

Senate leaders are optimistic about forging an eleventh-hour bipartisan deal preventing a possible federal default and ending the partial government shutdown after Republican divisions forced GOP leaders to drop efforts to ram their own version through the House. More>>

House GOP unveils bill to counter Senate debt plan

ouse GOP leaders unveiled their own plan Tuesday to counter an emerging Senate deal to reopen the government and forestall an economy-rattling default on U.S. obligations. More>>

Discussions continue over government standoff

Republican senators who'll meet with President Barack Obama at the White House today say they'll present their own options for ending the partial government shutdown and the debt limit standoff. More>>

House GOP leaders seek short-term debt extension

House Speaker John Boehner planned to ask fractious Republican lawmakers on Thursday to support a six-week extension of the government's ability to borrow money, even as Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew warned Congress of "irrevocable damage" that an unprecedented federal default would risk. More>>

Obama plans to talk to GOP again on shutdown, debt

President Barack Obama is making plans to talk with Republican lawmakers at the White House in the coming days as pressure builds on both sides to resolve their deadlock over the federal debt limit and the partial government shutdown. More>>

Obama to Boehner: No talks until government opens

President Barack Obama called the top Republican in the GOP-controlled House Tuesday, telling Speaker John Boehner once again that he won't negotiate over reopening the government or must-pass legislation to prevent a U.S. default on its obligations. More>>

Gov't shutdown enters 2nd week, no end in sight

The government shutdown entered its second week with no end in sight and ominous signs that the United States was closer to the first default in the nation's history as Speaker John Boehner ruled out any measure to boost borrowing authority without concessions from President Barack Obama. More>>

Dems say it's time for GOP to unite, end shutdown

President Barack Obama decided to stay home from economic summits in Asia as Democrats stepped up pressure on congressional Republicans to rein in their tea party faction and reopen the government with no strings attached. More>>

Senate set to OK budget bill, but fight not over

A potential government shutdown hurtling ever closer, the Democratic-led Senate moved Friday toward approving legislation keeping federal agencies from locking their doors on Tuesday. But disputes with the Republican-run House and among GOP lawmakers themselves ensure the battle will spill into the weekend at least, and quite possibly beyond. More>>

Government shutdown wouldn't stop Obamacare

Republicans pulling on the budget thread can't neatly unravel President Barack Obama's health care law. More>>

Cruz ends talkathon, Senate heads toward vote

Tea party conservative Sen. Ted Cruz ended his all-night talkathon to dismantle President Barack Obama's health care law after 21 hours and 19 minutes as the Senate pushed ahead to a test vote Wednesday on a bill to avert a government shutdown. More>>

Health care law reuniting Obama, Bill Clinton

Health care is reuniting President Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton. The two are set to appear together Tuesday to discuss Obama's health care law at a session sponsored by the Clinton Global Initiative, the former president's foundation. More>>

Obama: To honor victims, we 'have to change'

President Barack Obama memorialized the victims of the Washington Navy Yard shooting as patriots but also individuals - one with a talent for fixing cars, another who coached softball and yet another who loved hockey and her cats. More>>

House conservatives back 'Obamacare' alternative

A large group of House conservatives intends to unveil legislation providing an expanded tax break for consumers who purchase their own health coverage and increasing the government funding for high-risk pools, according to lawmakers who said the plan marked the Republicans' first comprehensive alternative to President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. More>>

Shooting reignites gun talk, but bills still cold

A deadly shooting in the heart of the nation's capital has reignited talk about guns, but it's uncertain whether the tragedy will revive a legislative debate that has gone cold in the face of opposition from Second Amendment supporters. More>>

Obama to tout economy while marking Lehman fall

President Barack Obama is seeking credit for an economic turnaround, using the fifth anniversary of the collapse of the Lehman Brothers investment bank to highlight signs of recovery and to warn against potentially market-rattling fights over the federal budget and the nation's debt ceiling. More>>

Obama water campaign raises environmental issue

First lady Michelle Obama led Wisconsin high school students in a toast to "the best drink in town" Thursday as she launched a campaign to encourage people to drink more water - something she said was the single best thing Americans could do to improve their health. More>>

Kerry reasserts Syria charge despite Assad denial

Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday that Syrian President Bashar Assad could resolve the crisis surrounding his purported use of chemical weapons by turning "every single bit" of his arsenal over to the international community by the end of the week. More>>

Obama: Syria crisis 'threat to global peace'; will address nation Tuesday

President Barack Obama, facing hardened international opposition to a strike against Syria and returning home to a skeptical American public, will address the country Tuesday to make his case. More>>

Obama: Congress, world credibility on line

In an impassioned appeal for support both at home and abroad, President Barack Obama said Wednesday the credibility of the international community and Congress is on the line in the debate over how to respond to the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria. As Obama made his case overseas during a visit to Sweden, his proposal for military intervention was under consideration by skeptical House members at home. More>>

White House: US prepared to go it alone in Syria strike

WASHINGTON (NBC News) -- An NBC News poll released Friday found that an overwhelming majority of Americans, roughly eight in 10, want the president to seek approval from lawmakers before any attack on More>>

Congress seeks answers from Obama on Syria

Wary of another war, congressional Republicans and Democrats pressed President Barack Obama to explain why the U.S. military should attack Syria and involve Americans in the deadly civil conflict that has roiled the Mideast. More>>

Facebook: Governments demanded data on 38K users

Government agents in 74 countries demanded information on about 38,000 Facebook users in the first half of this year, with about half the orders coming from authorities in the United States, the company said Tuesday. More>>

Obama: Syria attack a 'big event of grave concern'

President Barack Obama says a possible chemical weapons attack in Syria this week is a "big event of grave concern" that has hastened the timeframe for determining a U.S. response. More>>

Last Nixon tapes to be released cover key period

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The final installment of secretly recorded phone calls and meetings from President Richard Nixon's White House will be released Wednesday, marking a final chapter in a campaign for public More>>

Obama urges renewed push for Wall Street overhaul

Passage of a sweeping overhaul of Wall Street regulations in 2010 was a hallmark of President Barack Obama's first term. Three years later, amid delays and compromises that critics say have diluted its ambitious goals, the president is trying to rekindle the law's promise. More>>

Key Senate races have a family factor

Sen. Mark Pryor likes to tell voters that he always puts Arkansas first, borrowing the campaign slogan associated with his family for decades. In Wyoming, Liz Cheney bets that her famous father's name will be gold in her Senate race. And in Louisiana, Sen. Mary Landrieu counts on her kin's New Orleans ties to help lift her to re-election in a tough race. More>>

RNC votes to block CNN, NBC from hosting debates

The Republican National Committee has approved a resolution to block two television networks from hosting GOP presidential primary debates. More>>

Obama condemns Egypt over violence, cancels joint military exercise

President Barack Obama strongly condemned Egypt's interim government Thursday, saying the United States was canceling a planned joint military operation in protest over violent clashes that left at least 525 dead. More>>

White House condemns violence in Egypt

The White House on Wednesday condemned the violence sweeping across Egypt, as well as the resumption of emergency law there, warning Egypt's military-backed interim government that "the world is watching." More>>

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