It may “not be some damn game“, but this sure is some damn summary of all the latest news and developments. Via Bloomberg:
- House Democrats will attempt to use discharge petition to force House to vote on clean stopgap spending bill; 17 House Republicans would need to back the measure and 20 House Republicans have said they’d vote for a clean bill
- House in session tomorrow 10am
- White House supports House bill to retroactively pay govt staff, says Obama would veto House piecemeal spending bills
- House Speaker John Boehner says he won’t offer a clean debt limit bill, says shutdown “isn’t some damn game”
- Tea Party-backed Rep. Dennis Ross, R-Fla., says he’s in favor of spending deal that doesn’t include changes to Obamacare
More from Reuters:
House Republicans held their ground on Friday in a standoff with President Barack Obama over the U.S. government shutdown, accusing him of intransigence and not caring about the impact on the American people as the crisis dragged into a fourth day.
As Republicans and Democrats remained deadlocked over the shutdown, which was triggered by a dispute over the president’s healthcare reforms, the two sides also dug in over a measure to raise the nation’s borrowing authority. It must be approved by Congress by October 17 to avoid a government default.
House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner tried to squelch reports that he would ease the way to a debt ceiling increase, stressing that Republicans would continue to insist on budget cuts as a condition of raising the borrowing authority.
“This isn’t some damn game,” said an exasperated Boehner, responding to a Wall Street Journal article that quoted an unnamed White House official saying Democrats were “winning” the shutdown battle.
Obama reiterated that he was willing to negotiate with Republicans, but said, “We can’t do it with a gun held to the head of the American people….”
“There’s no winning when families don’t have certainty over whether they’re going to get paid or not,” Obama told reporters when he paid a visit to a downtown Washington lunch spot that was offering a discount to furloughed workers.
The shutdown began October 1 when the Republican House of Representatives refused to approve a bill funding the government unless it included provisions designed to delay or defund Obama’s healthcare reforms, which are now being implemented.
The reason for the late ramp: the possibility of a political outmanoeuvering of the republicans:
Democrats in the House were considering whether they could use a maneuver that would force a vote on legislation to reopen the government immediately, according to a House aide who asked not to be identified.
The aide did not provide details. The rarely used and time-consuming “discharge petition” maneuver normally dislodges a bill from a committee and sends it to the House floor if 218 lawmakers sign the petition in the 435-member chamber.
White House Spokesman Jay Carney said it was “utterly false” to suggest Obama did not want a speedy end to the shutdown. “We want this to end now. Period,” he said.
The melodrama continues tomorrow: same time, same place.