The debt ceiling will expire on Friday, giving Congress just under a week to vote to raise it. Treasury has signaled that they may have until the end of February, but there will certainly be more dire consequences. In exchange for raising the debt ceiling, House Republicans may call for the repeal of a provision in the Affordable Care Act that mitigates risk for insurance companies. White House and Congressional Democrats are calling for a clean extension.
The Farm Bill conferees released their $956.4 billion negotiated agreement (The Agricultural Act of 2014) early last week. It has been passed by the House by a vote of 251 to 166 and the Senate is expected to vote on it tomorrow.
Overall, the conferees created $23 billion in savings over 10 years, but these cuts were not without consequences. SNAP was cut by $8.6 billion over 10 years, resulting in a $90/month reduction in benefits for 850,000 SNAP recipients in 17 states that provide additional SNAP benefits to families that also participate in the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program payments (LIHEAP). More information about what this means for families in those states. More information about the changes made to the Nutrition Title.