WASHINGTON — The new Republican-led Congress marched right up to the edge of its first cliff, peered over the precipice and nearly jumped.
It came within moments of shutting down the Department of Homeland Security over an unrelated dispute about immigration, but managed to avert the crisis. And yet, that was one of the easier tasks facing Republican leaders.
If the first 10 weeks of 2015 are any indication, they have a rough ride ahead. Anxious conservatives see these essential items as their only vehicle to force reforms they yearn for in the face of implacable Democratic and White House opposition.
Here are five major "cliffs" — deadlines by which legislation must be passed in order to avoid disruptions in major federal programs — on the horizon.
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