Federal employees return to work this morning after Congress ended the 16-day federal government shutdown late Wednesday night. The budget compromise bill approved by the House and the Senate funds the government through January 15 and lifts the debt limit through February 7. When asked whether the United States would face a similar crisis when those deadlines approached, President Obama said, “No.”
The vote came hours before the deadline to raise the U.S. debt limit. Without an extension, the Treasury Department says it would have only $30 billion cash on hand. Ratings agency Fitch put the U.S. credit rating on a negative watch list.
"Because of today’s efforts, we will continue to honor all of our commitments — a core American value — and preserve the full faith and credit of the United States," Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said in a statement after the vote.
“At the same time,” Secretary Lew continues, “we remain committed to reaching agreement on a balanced fiscal package that will create jobs, grow our economy, and put us on a path toward long-term fiscal sustainability. Without question, it will require difficult choices. We stand ready to find that common ground with both Republicans and Democrats so we can sustain the recovery the American people have so painstakingly fought for and ensure we remain the most powerful economy in the world for generations to come.”
Attorneys are predicting a flood of regulations once the government agencies return to normal operations. Earlier this week, changes to the U.S. Munitions List and the Commerce List of export controls took effect, and the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security, is in the midst of what has been called the largest overhaul of export regulations in U.S. history. Other agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency are likely to have additional actions that affect business.
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