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With a 231-203 House majority, Republicans said they were assured of having enough votes to pass a balanced-budget plan, scheduled for a vote yesterday. Senate Republicans readied their own budget plan for floor debate beginning yesterday. Final passage is expected next week. In contrast to the House plan, the Senate measure contains a softer commitment to a tax cut.
President Clinton threatened to veto a $16.4 billion spending-cuts bill that a House-Senate conference approved this week. House Republicans will go forward with action on the bill, even though they acknowledge they don't have enough support to override a veto. (Story, Page 1.)
Senators Kerrey and Simpson said they would propose a package of bills aimed at curbing the growth of entitlement spending such as Social Security. At the same time, the package would reign in congressional and federal government plans.
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a GOP plan to cut back three foreign-policy agencies and fold them into the State Department. Under the bill, the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, the Agency for International Development, and the US Information Agency would be eliminated.
Clinton said he was confident Commerce Secretary Brown would be cleared of any wrongdoing and wanted him to stay on in his Cabinet. Attorney General Reno earlier recommended that an independent counsel investigate Brown's business dealings and personal finances. A federal panel was expected to accept Reno's recommendation.
Republicans are putting $500 million in a defense bill as a down payment on 20 more B-2 stealth bombers, even though the Pentagon has said no more of the radar-evading planes are needed. The bill is scheduled for a House vote next Wednesday.
Federal Reserve Board chairman Greenspan defended new rules designed to encourage community banks to make loans to low- and moderate-income borrowers. He said the rules reduce the paperwork burden required by banks under the Community Reinvestment Act. A House Banking subcommittee was to hold hearings on the issue yesterday.
The National Rifle Association apologized for a fund-raising letter describing some federal agents as ''jack-booted thugs,'' saying it intended to criticize isolated actions. NRA officials are gathering in Phoenix for the organization's annual meeting.
A preliminary hearing was set for yesterday in Oklahoma City for bombing suspect Terry Nichols. Officials said the federal building will be demolished on Tuesday. Bombing suspect Timothy McVeigh's attorney and defense investigators will be allowed to inspect the ruins until midnight Sunday. The city plans to save granite panels from the building for use in memorials.
Eighty-three percent of Americans oppose private armed militia groups thrust into the spotlight after the Oklahoma City bombing, according to an ABC News/Washington Post poll.
An unprecedented revolt in the country's troubled labor movement has escalated, with five more unions joining dissidents who say they now have enough votes to topple longtime AFL-CIO President Lane Kirkland. The membership of the five new unions brings to about 7 million the potential votes to oust Kirkland, a dissident spokesman said. The AFL-CIO refutes this.
The Federal Aviation Administration said it has fired or suspended six inspectors and a dozen private examiners over the issuing of falsified pilot-rating certificates. None of the faked ratings was used to fly in commercial service, the FAA said.
Seventy-five years ago, Congress set aside 200,000 acres in Hawaii to provide homesteads for native Hawaiians but provided no money for the Hawaiian Home Land Trust to develop the land. State governors grabbed it for public uses. Now, the Hawaii Legislature has committed $600 million to compensate for misuse or wrongful sale of 39,000 acres.
Palestinians yesterday strongly condemned the US veto of a UN Security Council resolution on Israel's land confiscation in Arab East Jerusalem as a contradiction of the Israel-PLO peace deal and international accords. The veto makes it nearly certain an Arab summit will be held this month; but militant Muslim leaders are raising the possibility of a violent response. Israel, meanwhile, is worried about Iran's efforts to develop a nuclear capability despite a US-Russian deal under which Moscow agreed not to supply a gas centrifuge to Tehran.