Wednesday, February 12

Senate passes debt-ceiling increase - kicking the debt-can to after the midterm elections

12 Republicans joined Democrats to defeat a filibuster bid by Republican Sen. Ted Cruz moving the new date for the debt ceiling into March of 2015. President Obama has already indicated that he will sign the Bill into law as soon as it reaches his desk.

The passage is a blow tot he Tea Party faction who stood apposed to any increase in federal spending. The vote to cut off debate on the debt ceiling measure passed 67 to 31, after a dramatic scene on the floor when Republicans brought 12 votes in support of the Bill, clearing the way for final approval.

The final Senate vote was 55 - 43

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Speaker John Boehner stepped away from the practice of demanding concessions -- spending cuts, or other provisions in exchange for raising the debt limit quickly and moving the time frame for further negotiations to after the mid-term elections.

Boehner had struggled to win support from his caucus and in the end relied mostly on the Democrats to approve the debt-limit increase.

In the end the Bill passed the House yesterday on a 221-201 vote by majority of Democrats and 28 Republicans.

The move on the debt-ceiling cap allows the Treasury Department to borrow normally for another 13 months and then reset the government's borrowing cap. The borrowing cap is currently set at $17.2 trillion.

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