VP Biden Honored with Diplomatic Leadership Award; Grover the Muppet Attends

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-12_6e9e16308f.jpgBRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images (WASHINGTON) -- An array of non-profits, corporate CEO’s, diplomats, military, and faith leaders honored Vice President Joe Biden Thursday for his contributions to international diplomacy. Senator John McCain, R-Ariz., and the vice president’s son, Hunter Biden, took the stage at the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition dinner to hand off the award.

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White House to Avert Coverage Gap for Some Americans with Pre-Existing Conditions

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-12_332c08dcda.jpgiStock/Thinkstock (WASHINGTON) -- In a nod to the challenges that many Americans are facing in the transition to new health plans under the Affordable Care Act, the White House Thursday announced some modest steps to provide relief for particularly at-risk consumers. The more than 85,000 Americans who are currently enrolled in the federal Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP) will now have until Jan. 15 to purchase a plan through the exchange, if they have not already done so.

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US Cites 17 Alleged Violators of Iran Sanctions

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-12_6319f0f881.jpgBEHROUZ MEHRI/AFP/Getty Images (WASHINGTON) -- The United States has designated four companies and one person as violators of U.S. oil sanctions on Iran. Another 12 companies and people have been identified as front companies, aiding Iran’s nuclear program. The State Department and U.S. Treasury announced the moves Thursday, nearly one month after reaching a deal with Iran and world powers in Geneva Nov. 24, which will include rolling back sanctions in exchange for limits on nuclear-enrichment progress and reactor construction in Iran.

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Senate Democrats Weigh In on GOP Infighting

Inauguration-today 030.jpg?__SQUARESPACE_CACHEVERSION=1386879377190ABC News (WASHINGTON) -- Senate Democratic leaders weighed in on the current Republican infighting over the Ryan-Murray budget deal at a news conference Thursday. Asked what he thought of House Speaker John Boehner’s criticism of outside groups weighing in on the budget deal, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said, “it was a breath of fresh air as far as I’m concerned.”

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Boehner Says Tea Party Activists Have 'Lost All Credibility'

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-12_c2820b1e7e.jpgFile photo. (ABC News) (WASHINGTON) -- Years of growing friction between the Republican Party leaders and its Tea Party faction have erupted into what one conservative said Thursday was "full-scale civil war." House Speaker John Boehner, whose strategies have been repeatedly thwarted by Tea Party revolts in recent years, was blunt Thursday when asked whether he thought the ultra-conservatives should get in line.

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