Roll Call: “As the contours of a potential two-year budget agreement have emerged in advance of a Friday deadline, those outside the talks are expressing displeasure with both sides — perhaps a sign that a deal really is close. And any deal, although certain to fall far short of the aborted grand bargains of yore, would be remarkable in its own right, ending a year of historic dysfunction in Washington, D.C., with a road map for a return to some semblance of normalcy.”
National Journal: "[A]s legislative business closed Monday evening, there were scant signs of an imminent budget breakthrough. A few lawmakers wandered the Capitol’s corridors, none of them claiming to have heard anything new on the negotiations.”
The Hill: “The push for Iran sanctions took a major hit on Monday as lawmakers on the Armed Services panels moved to rush through a $607 billion Pentagon spending bill without amendments.”
David Rogers looks at what could be key to the farm bill.
New York Times: "House and Senate negotiators reached final agreement Monday on a Pentagon policy bill that would strengthen protections for military victims of sexual assault and keep the prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, open over President Obama’s strenuous objections, as Congress rushed to wrap up work for the year.”
Roll Call: “In a gambit to avoid the most controversial pitfalls that could end a 51-year streak of annual passage, the top defense lawmakers from the House and Senate announced a deal on a $632.8 billion National Defense Authorization Act on Monday, even before the Senate had passed its version of the Pentagon policy bill.”
“Controversial House Democrat Alan Grayson lost $18 million as part of a criminal scheme run by a Virginia man that bilked more than 100 investors out of more than $35 million, according to federal court documents,” Politico reports.
First published December 10 2013, 6:12 AM