By Alexander Bolton and Peter Schroeder – 10/12/13 01:29 AM ET
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) are taking the lead on talks to raise the debt limit and reopen the government, according to senators.
Reid and McConnell are working off a six-point proposal sponsored by Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) that would fund the government for six months and raise the debt ceiling until Jan. 31, 2014.
Senators view discussions between the two leaders as a promising sign of potential bipartisan compromise.
“Reid and McConnell are talking now and those discussions continue so I see that as progress,” said Senate Republican Whip John Cornyn (R-Texas).
“There are a number of different elements,” he added. “The fact that they’re actually talking for the first time represents significant progress.”
Democrats said they could not accept the Collins offer as it now stands. Continue reading “Reid and McConnell talk deal”
A bipartisan proposal to pay furloughed federal workers retroactively for the shutdown period has quickly gained traction in the House, where a vote on the measure is expected Saturday.
(J. Scott Applewhite/AP)
The Democrat-controlled Senate is likely to pass the bill if it meets with approval in the House, and the White House budget office has made clear that President Obama will sign the legislation if it arrives on his desk.
Rep. James Moran (D-Va.) first introduced the bill a few days ago and House GOP leaders announced plans to hold a vote on it on Friday. Continue reading “How did the bill for shutdown pay come about?”
House Sends Spending Bill Back to Senate, Brings Shutdown Closer
A statue of George Washington stands in the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol Sunday morning, Sept. 29, 2013 as a government shutdown looms. Cliff Owen/AP
The House approved a measure early Sunday morning that would fund the government through Dec. 15 while delaying implementation of Obamacare for one year, a politically risky maneuver that united House Republicans but pushes the federal government closer to a shutdown.
The legislation—which also includes an amendment to repeal the medical device tax and a separate provision to pay military members in the event of a shutdown—passed easily, putting the continuing resolution to keep the government running past Monday back in the Senate’s court.
“They might have to come back from their vacation,” said Rep. Tom Graves, R-Ga., who has led the charge for an Obamacare delay, before the vote. “Harry Reid has to now decide if he’s going to continue forcing this bad law on the American people.” Continue reading “House Sends Spending Bill Back to Senate, Brings Shutdown Closer”
Do you think the government is going to shut down? That’s what CBS’s Bob Schieffer asked Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, D-Ill, on Face the Nation Sunday morning. “I’m afraid I do,” he said.
Right now, with a day and change left before the government shuts down if Congress can’t agree on how to fund it, Durbin’s prediction is looking pretty sage.
If for no other reason, that’s because with so little time left, the frame of the debate is still far from a position that could yield a real negotiation. On Sunday, Sens. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Rand Paul, R-Ky., took up a line on the budget fight that seems to prime the government for a shutdown. “It’s not a good idea to give the president 100 percent of what he wants on Obamacare without compromise,” Paul said on Face the Nation. “We’ve been offering him compromises.” On Meet the Press, Ted Cruz said much the same thing: Continue reading “Congress Looks Resigned to a Shutdown”
With a possible government shutdown looming, Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz tried to place the blame on squarely on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for refusing to compromise on the Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama’s signature health care law.
“So far, [Reid] has essentially told the House of Representatives and the American people, ‘Go jump in a lake,'” Cruz said on “Meet The Press” on NBC. “He said, ‘I’m not willing to compromise, I’m not willing to even talk,’ His position is 100 percent of Obamacare must be funded in all instances, and, other than that, he’s going to shut the government down. I hope he doesn’t do that. If Harry Reid forces a government shutdown, that will be a mistake. I hope he backs away from that ledge that he’s pushing us towards, but that is his position.”
Cruz continued: “Twice Harry Reid has said, ‘We won’t even have a conversation. I refuse to compromise. We want to fund it all. We want to stick it on the American people. And we won’t budge.’ That’s not a reasonable position. And if we have a shutdown, it will be because Harry Reed holds that absolutist position, and essentially, holds the American people hostage.”
Cruz commended the House’s early Sunday vote to keep the government open and delay Obamacare for a year, despite Reid’s contention that the bill would be dead on arrival when the Senate resumes work Monday. Continue reading “Ted Cruz: If we have a shutdown, it will be because Harry Reid ‘holds the American people hostage’”