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Why U.S. Taxpayers Pay $7 Billion A Year To Help Fast-Food Workers

Fifty-two percent of low-wage fast-food workers rely on public assistance programs like food stamps and Medicaid just to make ends meet, a fresh analysis finds. Many are adults supporting families. But some conservative economists say raising the minimum wage to $15 — as protesters are demanding — wouldn't help matters.
NPR

Good Cop, Bad Cop Routine Gets A Result For Obama And Reid

The two Democrats played the routine where one officer offers the suspect a cup of coffee and the other smacks it from the suspect's lips. Reid, of course, is the smacker.
NPR

When Will The Government Run Out Of Money?

Unless Congress raises the debt ceiling soon, the government won't be able to pay its bills. Here's a graph showing some of the big payments coming due.
NPR

As It Happened: The Fight Over The Debt Ceiling, Shutdown

With hours left before the country tops its borrowing authority, the Senate-crafted, bipartisan measure passed the lower chamber.

NPR

Debt Ceiling Deal Depends On U.S. Senate

The Senate has been working on a bipartisan deal to reopen the government and raise the debt ceiling. But House conservatives have signaled they might not go along with a Senate deal. Steve Inskeep talks to Republican Senator Saxby Chambliss of Georgia about how he thinks the impasse can be resolved.
NPR

No Deal On Tuesday Leads To Day 16 Of Shutdown On Wednesday

With the threat of a government default looming, House leaders tried to take the upper hand in the standoff with a bill appealing to their most conservative members. They failed, resulting in chaos in the House and giving the initiative back to the Senate.
NPR

When Will Congress' Inaction Push U.S. Into Default?

Determining the day on which the U.S. government might default is tricky. The Bipartisan Policy Center says the last eight days of October is a critical period because of all the payments due that week. The potential for a credit default is already causing problems for big financial firms that use U.S. Treasurys as collateral.
NPR

Banks Ease Purse Strings On Luxury Home Loans

For the first time in decades, interest rates for jumbo home loans are lower than rates for a typical mortgage. And because of that, the luxury market is the fastest growing sector of home loans. In Phoenix, sales of homes that cost more than $500,000 are up 64 percent.
NPR

Congress Keeps Working As Debt Ceiling Deadline Nears

This could be the last day the United States is assured of its borrowing authority. Congress could forestall this crisis by raising the debt ceiling, as it has roughly a hundred times before. But the debt ceiling is tied to the same confrontation that's kept much of the federal government shut down.
NPR

China Gives Mesaured Response To Possible U.S. Default

China is the biggest foreign holder of U.S. debt — totaling more than $1.3 trillion. Chinese media are using the American budget struggle as an implicit justification for China's system.

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