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Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan

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

Articles by Stephen Dinan

House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio walks to a Republican strategy session on Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday, Oct. 4, 2013. Boehner is struggling between Democrats that control the Senate and GOP conservatives in his caucus who insist any funding legislation must also kill or delay the nation's new health care law. Added pressure came from President Barack Obama who pointedly blamed Boehner on Thursday for keeping federal agencies closed. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

House approves retroactive pay for furloughed government workers

Seeking to dent President Obama's refusal to chip away at the government shutdown piece-by-piece, House Republicans passed a bill Saturday to guarantee all federal employees get paid after the government shutdown — including those who have been sent home and aren't on the job. Published October 5, 2013

** FILE ** House Speaker John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican, speaks President Obama. (Associated Press photographs)

Obama backs part of House shutdown strategy

President Obama opposes the House Republican caucus strategy to pass government funding in pieces, but the White House signaled Friday he will sign at least one of those bills — a measure that would ensure federal employees get paid even if they were forced out of work. Published October 4, 2013

Park rangers on Friday were turning away people who want to visit the Pisgah Inn on the Blue Ridge Parkway in an effort to enforce the National Park Service's decision to shut down the private establishment during the government shutdown. A Times reader sent in photos of the rangers blocking the entrance. (Image provided by Sloane Salzman)

Blue Ridge hotel defies Park Service shutdown

Park rangers on Friday were turning away people who want to visit the Pisgah Inn on the Blue Ridge Parkway in an effort to enforce the National Park Service's decision to shut down the private establishment during the government shutdown. Published October 4, 2013

House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio walks to a Republican strategy session on Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday, Oct. 4, 2013. Boehner is struggling between Democrats that control the Senate and GOP conservatives in his caucus who insist any funding legislation must also kill or delay the nation's new health care law. Added pressure came from President Barack Obama who pointedly blamed Boehner on Thursday for keeping federal agencies closed. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Boehner: Shutdown 'isn't some damn game'

Republicans on Friday were furious over a Wall Street Journal report that the White House believes it is "winning" the shutdown fight. Published October 4, 2013

**FILE** Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., tells reporters that Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, and House Republicans are the obstacle to ending the government shutdown crisis, at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 3, 2013. President Barack Obama brought congressional leaders to the White House on Wednesday for the first time since a partial government shutdown began, but there was no sign of progress toward ending an impasse that has idled 800,000 federal workers and curbed services around the country. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Reid apologizes for nasty tone on Senate floor

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid delivered a striking mea culpa on the Senate floor Friday as he opened the chamber, saying he and his colleagues have simply gotten too personal and nasty in their floor debates. Published October 4, 2013

Veteran Raul Sanchez and others protests the government shutdown at the San Antonio office of  U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz. Texas is one of the richest beneficiaries of federal spending, with its military bases, Gulf Coast seaports, and nearly 2,000-mile border with Mexico. (Associated Press photographs)

House passes bills to fund safety and security agencies during shutdown

The House on Thursday passed bills to pay National Guard troops and fund Veterans Affairs services during the government shutdown and signaled that it would take up a bill to make sure all federal employees — including those on furlough — eventually get paid. Published October 3, 2013

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., pauses outside the West Wing of the White House after meeting with President Barack Obama in Washington, Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013. Obama and congressional leaders met at the White House on the second day of a partial government shutdown. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Senate Democrats block reopening of NIH, national parks

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Thursday blocked a House bill providing funding to reopen national parks amid the government shutdown, saying he would not allow the GOP to pick and choose from among favored programs and insisting the only way out is to pass all spending at the same time. Published October 3, 2013

Democrats' immigration bill leaves out security

Tired of waiting for the GOP, House Democrats announced their own immigration bill Wednesday that grants illegal immigrants a path to citizenship but strips out the tough new border security measures passed by the Senate earlier this year. Published October 2, 2013

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, speaks to reporters following a meeting with President Barack Obama at the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013.  (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

No go: Boehner says Obama still won't negotiate on government funding

Congressional leaders emerged Wednesday night from a meeting with President Obama at the White House reporting little progress as all sides struggle for a solution to the government shutdown, which began Tuesday and showed no signs of breaking. Published October 2, 2013

** FILE ** Acting Internal Revenue Service chief Danny Werfel. (Associated Press)

IRS collecting money but not sending tax refunds during shutdown

The IRS is still collecting taxes during the government shutdown, but it isn't sending refunds — and it also has stopped complying with a subpoena to turn over documents to members of Congress who are investigating the agency's targeting of tea party groups. Published October 2, 2013

With the federal government out of money and out of time, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (second from left) meets with House GOP conferees as the Republican-controlled House and the Democrat-controlled Senate remain at an impasse, neither side backing down over Obamacare, at the Capitol in Washington on Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013.  With Mr. Cantor are (from left) Reps. Paul Ryan, Dave Camp and Tom Graves. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

House GOP adds NIH, National Guard to shutdown bill strategy

House Republicans plan to keep trying their new piecemeal approach to solving the shutdown, setting up yet another round of votes Wednesday on bills that would fund veterans affairs and national parks — and adding new bills to fund the National Institutes of Health and to pay the National Guard and the military reserves. Published October 2, 2013

Federal watchdogs are early shutdown victims

Sunshine and oversight were two of the early casualties of the government shutdown, with the agencies charged with watching over the federal government saying they had to furlough employees in order to comply with the shutdown. Published October 1, 2013

** FILE ** Speaker of the House John Boehner, R- Ohio, pauses during a news conference after a House Republican Conference meeting about the ongoing budget fight on Capitol Hill on Monday, Sept. 30, 2013, in Washington.  (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

House rejects restoration of funds during shutdown for veterans, parks

With the government shutdown closing national monuments and sending federal office workers home, House Republicans changed tactics Tuesday and tried to pass individual spending bills that they said would restore money to high-profile programs such as veterans affairs, national parks and the Smithsonian Institution. Published October 1, 2013

The dome of the Capitol is reflected in a skylight of the Capitol Visitor's Center in Washington on  Jan. 1, 2013. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Government shutdown begins as gridlocked Congress gives up

Congress adjourned early Tuesday morning without renewing funding for the federal government and the White House issued orders beginning the grim task of shutting down "nonessential" services across the nation. Published September 30, 2013

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., leaves the Senate Chamber after lawmakers once again rejected the House version of the government funding bill, Monday night, Sept. 30, 2013, in Washington. The Republican-controlled House and the Democrat-controlled Senate are at an impasse as Congress continues to struggle over how to prevent a possible shutdown of the federal government when it runs out of money. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

House GOP tries fourth shutdown proposal, Democrats vow rejection

House Republicans tried a fourth different option late Monday, proposing to enter into official spending negotiations with Senate Democrats over a stopgap year-end spending bill, but it, like the three earlier proposals, was immediately rejected by Democrats who said there will no talks. Published September 30, 2013

**FILE** Former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson (Associated Press)

EPA officials cleared of email abuse charges

The EPA's inspector general cleared the agency Monday of wrongdoing in its employees' use of private email accounts to conduct government business, saying that, after talking with senior officials, investigators found no evidence employees were trying to circumvent open-records laws. Published September 30, 2013