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Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan can be reached at sdinan@washingtontimes.com.

Articles by Stephen Dinan

Senate's agenda grows as the clock ticks

Senate Democrats on Tuesday unveiled a broad agenda for an end-of-session sprint that otherwise could be a whole year's worth of activity — including an arms-reduction treaty with Russia, a major immigration reform bill and legislation overturning the ban on openly gay military service members. Published December 14, 2010

Ruling hinged in part on terminology

When Congress was writing the health care bill, lawmakers insisted the individual mandate that consumers buy insurance was backed up by a penalty, not a tax. On Monday, that decision came back to bite them. Published December 13, 2010

Tax-cut deal clears big hurdle in Senate

In an overwhelming bipartisan vote the Senate on Monday cleared a path for the tax-cut deal President Obama struck with Republicans last week, with even former staunch opponents of the Bush-era tax cuts voting for their extension. Published December 13, 2010

Dems' sales pitch derails health-care law

When Congress was writing the health-care bill, lawmakers insisted the individual mandate that consumers buy insurance was backed up by a penalty, not a tax. On Monday, that decision came back to bite them. Published December 13, 2010

Obama, GOP wrote deal in red ink

Republicans wanted more tax cuts. Democrats wanted more spending. They got both in the tax-cut deal President Obama struck with the GOP, and it's the federal budget that will take the hit. Published December 12, 2010

Senate vote eyed for tax-cut deal

The lame-duck Congress careened Thursday toward a conclusion after lawmakers cleared the nice-but-not-essential bills out of the way and settled down to the serious work on the must-pass tax-cut legislation. Published December 9, 2010

Ron Arteno of the Fresno Tea Party Movement holds a sign protesting in front of students supporting Fresno State Student Body President Pedro Ramirez before he spoke to hundreds of students and faculty about getting the Dream Act passed by Congress Friday, Nov. 19, 2010, in Fresno, Calif., in the Free Speech area of the university. Ramirez was recently outted as being undocumented and could now face deportation. (AP Photo/Gary Kazanjian)

DREAM immigration legislation hits Senate snag

Senate Democrats voted Thursday to block their own immigration legalization bill, dealing a setback to the effort just a day after the House approved a similar bill to grant legal status to hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrant children and young adults. Published December 9, 2010

House Democrats push through bill to legalize children of illegals

Riding a late White House push and driven by impassioned pleas by children of illegal immigrants, House Democrats on Wednesday night forced through a bill that would legalize hundreds of thousands of children and young adults brought here illegally by their parents. Published December 8, 2010

BUDGETEER: Rep. David R. Obey, Wisconsin Democrat and Appropriations Committee chairman, wrote the House version of the spending bill. (Associated Press)

House acts to block closing of Gitmo

Congress on Wednesday signaled it won't close the prison at Guantanamo Bay or allow any of its suspected terrorist detainees to be transferred to the U.S., dealing what is likely the final blow to President Obama's campaign pledge to shutter the facility in Cuba. Published December 8, 2010

Obama fights his party to defend tax-cut deal

Facing a backlash from Democrats over the tax-cut deal he struck with the GOP, a fiery President Obama lashed out at members of his own party Tuesday, telling them not to let a partisan fight scuttle the chance to keep taxes low for middle-class Americans. Published December 7, 2010

Rep. Fred Upton, Michigan Republican

Upton flips a switch on CFL bulbs

Three years after he led the charge to require consumers to ditch their comfortable old incandescent lights in favor of those twisty CFL bulbs, Rep. Fred Upton now wants to be the man to help undo that law as the next chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Published December 6, 2010

Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., left and Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., take part in a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington Friday, Dec. 3, 2010, to discuss proposals to continue the Bush era tax cuts. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Senate blocks Obama's tax plan

The Senate blocked President Obama's and Democratic leaders' tax cut plans Saturday in a foreordained symbolic vote that now sends both sides back to the negotiating table to work out a viable deal. Published December 4, 2010

President Barack Obama waves as he is introduced to the troops at a rally during an unannounced visit at Bagram Air Field in Afghanistan on Friday, Dec. 3, 2010. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Obama makes surprise trip to Afghanistan

Making a surprise trip to Afghanistan to get a first-hand look at the state of the war on terror, President Obama told U.S. troops there that they are succeeding in the mission he gave them. Published December 3, 2010

ASSOCIATED PRESS
CHASTENED: Rep. Charles B. Rangel, New York Democrat, speaks to the media after being censured by the House for 11 ethics violations, mostly related to his efforts to raise funds for the Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Policy.

Divided House votes to censure Rangel on ethics

Acknowledging they were breaking new ground, deeply divided House lawmakers voted Thursday to censure Rep. Charles B. Rangel for breaking tax laws and House rules, saying Congress needed to live up to Speaker Nancy Pelosi's pledge to be open, honest and ethical. Published December 2, 2010

House tax-cut vote not likely to sway Senate

Flexing their soon-to-expire legislative muscle, House Democrats on Thursday won a symbolic but potentially hollow victory to extend only some of the Bush-era tax cuts while letting taxes rise beginning next month for wealthier Americans. Published December 2, 2010

ASSOCIATED PRESS
CHASTENED: Rep. Charles B. Rangel, New York Democrat, speaks to the media after being censured by the House for 11 ethics violations, mostly related to his efforts to raise funds for the Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Policy.

Divided House votes to censure Rangel

Acknowledging they were breaking new ground, deeply divided House lawmakers voted Thursday to censure Rep. Charles B. Rangel for breaking tax laws and House rules, saying Congress needed to live up to Speaker Nancy Pelosi's pledge to be open, honest and ethical. Published December 2, 2010

House Dems ram through tax vote

Flexing their soon-to-expire legislative muscle, House Democrats on Thursday won a symbolic but hollow victory to end Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans starting Jan. 1, while preserving cuts for all lower-income taxpayers. Published December 2, 2010

Immigration bill faces last chance before GOP takes House control

Both chambers of Congress will vote in the coming days on a bill to legalize children and young adult illegal immigrants - a last-minute attempt to pass something before Republicans take control of the House next year and likely put legalization out of reach. Published December 1, 2010

House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer says the chamber will vote on a bill that would extend the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for most Americans, but call for a tax increase for those making more than $250,000.

GOP senators press Democrats to tackle spending bills, tax cuts

Republican senators said Wednesday they will block all business in the chamber until Democrats tackle the long-overdue spending bills and impending tax increases, raising the level of brinkmanship to new heights even as House Democrats prepared to push ahead with a partisan tax vote Thursday. Published December 1, 2010