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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., walks to a policy luncheon on Capitol Hill, Thursday, Oct. 7, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo / Alex Brandon)

The Senate has dodged a U.S. debt disaster, voting to extend the government’s borrowing authority into December and temporarily avert an unprecedented federal default that experts warned would devastate the economy and harm millions of Americans.

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President Joe Biden tours the International Union Of Operating Engineers Local 324 training facility, Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2021, in Howell, Mich. Michigan Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist, left, and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer second from left, look on. (AP Photo / Evan Vucci)

Calling opponents of his plans “complicit in America’s decline,” President Joe Biden made the case Tuesday that his ambitious social spending proposal is key to America’s global competitiveness — even as he acknowledged the current $3.5 trillion price tag will shrink.

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Former Facebook employee and whistleblower Frances Haugen testifies during a Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation hearing on Capitol Hill on Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2021, in Washington. (Drew Angerer / Pool via AP)

Frances Haugen, testifying to the Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, also offered thoughtful ideas about how Facebook’s social media platforms could be made safer.

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President Joe Biden speaks with members of the press before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House, Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021, in Washington. Biden is spending the weekend at his home in Delaware. (AP Photo / Patrick Semansky)

President Joe Biden on Saturday acknowledged frustrations as Democrats strain to rescue a scaled-back version of his $3.5 trillion government-overhaul plan and salvage a related public works bill after frantic negotiations failed to produce a deal.

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Calif. reacts as she listens to a question from a reporter during her weekly press briefing on Capitol Hill, Thursday, Sept. 30, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo / Andrew Harnik)

With only hours to spare, Congress passed legislation that would avoid a partial federal shutdown and keep the government funded through Dec. 3, and sent the bill to President Joe Biden.

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FILE - In this June 9, 2015 file photo, former House Speaker Dennis Hastert departs the federal courthouse, in Chicago. A judge on Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2021, finalized an out-of-court settlement between Hastert and a man who alleged that Hastert sexually abused him decades ago. (AP Photo/Christian K. Lee, File)

A judge on Wednesday finalized an out-of-court settlement between former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert and a man who alleged that Hastert sexually abused him decades ago.

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Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., a centrist Democrat vital to the fate of President Joe Biden’s $3.5 trillion domestic agenda, is surrounded by reporters outside the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2021. (AP Photo / J. Scott Applewhite)

His government overhaul plans at stake, President Joe Biden appeared unable to swiftly strike agreement with two wavering Democratic senators trying to trim back his potentially historic $3.5 trillion measure that will collapse without their support.

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., walks to the chamber for a test vote on a government spending bill, at the Capitol in Washington, Monday, Sept. 27, 2021. (AP Photo / J. Scott Applewhite)

Republican senators blocked a bill to keep the government operating and allow federal borrowing, but Democrats aiming to avert a shutdown pledged to try again — at the same time pressing ahead on President Joe Biden’s big plans to reshape government.

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Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., right, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, left, and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., update reporters on Democratic efforts to pass President Joe Biden’s “Build Back Better” agenda, at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Sept. 23, 2021. (AP Photo / J. Scott Applewhite)

With President Joe Biden’s broad domestic agenda at risk of collapse, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Sunday vowed that Democrats will pass a bipartisan infrastructure bill this week and push ahead on the bigger $3.5 trillion social safety net and climate change bill.

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This May 16, 2021, photo shows window air conditioners in New York. (AP Photo / Jenny Kane)

In what officials call a key step to combat climate change, the Environmental Protection Agency is sharply limiting domestic production and use of hydrofluorocarbons, highly potent greenhouse gases commonly used in refrigerators and air conditioners.

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., smiles as he and the GOP leadership speak to reporters after a weekly GOP policy meeting, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2021.  (AP Photo / J. Scott Applewhite)

The House voted late Tuesday to keep the government funded, suspend the federal debt limit and provide disaster and refugee aid, setting up a high-stakes showdown with Republicans who oppose the package despite the risk of triggering a fiscal crisis.

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(WTTW News via CNN)

Bipartisan legislation to be introduced Friday by U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush would honor those whose efforts led to the successful development of COVID-19 vaccines, including researchers, scientists, doctors and vaccine trial volunteers. 

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This undated file photo provided by the Lake County Sheriff’s Department shows ex-U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert. (Lake County Sheriff Department via AP File)

Former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert and a man who accused him of child sexual abuse reached a tentative out-of-court settlement Wednesday over Hastert’s refusal to pay the man $1.8 million — the outstanding balance in hush money that the Illinois Republican agreed to pay the man in 2010. 

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U.S. Reps. Underwood, Foster and Krishnamoorthi call for federal reproductive health law

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Gov. J.B. Pritzker speaks Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021 about a controversial new Texas law banning nearly all abortions in that state. (WTTW News)

In the wake of a new law banning nearly all abortions in Texas, Gov. J.B. Pritzker and members of Illinois’ congressional delegation vowed to protect women’s rights while calling for a federal reproductive health law. “Nobody should be forced to cross state lines to see a doctor,” Pritzker said.

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In this Nov. 3, 2020, file photo, poll workers sort out early and absentee ballots at the Kenosha Municipal building on Election Day in Kenosha, Wis. (AP Photo / Wong Maye-E, File)

Congress provided hundreds of millions of dollars to shore up the nation’s election system against cyberattacks and other threats, but roughly two-thirds of the money remained unspent just weeks before last year’s presidential election.

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Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., leaves the chamber after urging advancement of the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, named for the late Georgia congressman who made the issue a defining one of his career, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Aug. 24, 2021. (AP Photo / J. Scott Applewhite)

Striking a deal with moderates, House Democratic leaders muscled President Joe Biden’s multitrillion-dollar budget blueprint over a key hurdle Tuesday, ending a risky standoff and putting the party’s domestic infrastructure agenda back on track.