Jul 20, 2011, 11:23 p.m.
Obama open to short-term debt fix if big deal agreed
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House signaled on Wednesday it could support a short-term increase in the U.S. borrowing limit for "a few days" if lawmakers agreed to a broad deficit reduction deal but needed more time to pass it. The move, a shift from President Barack Obama's previous position, reflects the growing political reality that time is short for Congress to pass a massive deficit-cutting deal before the United States runs out of money on August 2.
New poll carries warning signs for Obama in 2012
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A poll released on Wednesday carried warning signs for President Barack Obama's re-election chances in 2012. The Public Policy Polling survey found that for the first time since July, Obama does not lead Republican front-runner Mitt Romney in the group's monthly national poll on the 2012 election race. Romney has pulled into a tie with Obama at 45 percent.
Obama says his "stewardship" to decide '12 election
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama said on Wednesday that the deciding factor for voters next year in his re-election campaign will be their verdict on his track record, not the Republican running against him. "If next November, they feel like I've been on their side and I've been working as hard as I can and have been getting some things done to move us in the right direction, I'll win. If they don't, then I'll lose," Obama said.
Republican Romney says Obama's policies hurt economy
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney took aim at President Barack Obama's economic leadership on Wednesday, saying the Democrat's policies were hurting, not helping, the U.S. economy. "The president's policies almost without question have caused this recession to be deeper and longer than it would have been and have made this recovery more anemic than it should have been," Romney said at a campaign stop in a run-down North Hollywood community.
Medigap limits could save Medicare money
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Federal deficit-reduction proposals that would limit Medicare supplemental insurance plans could save money but raise costs for some elderly beneficiaries, a study said on Wednesday. Requiring higher out-of-pocket costs and deductibles for private "Medigap" plans is contained in most deficit reduction proposals being weighed by Congress. Medicare is a big-ticket item in the federal budget because its costs will balloon as baby boomers, those born between 1946 and 1964, hit retirement age and begin drawing on health benefits.
Republican senator presses Obama on trade deals
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Senator Rob Portman on Wednesday urged President Barack Obama to quickly send three long-delayed free-trade pacts to Congress for approval, rather than wait until after the August congressional recess. Portman, a former U.S. trade representative under President George W. Bush, also said 12 Republican senators have agreed to support an extension of Trade Adjustment Assistance, a worker retraining program that Obama has insisted be approved along with the pacts.
Analysis: Tough fight for Obama in 2012 in some key states