The government has until Friday at midnight to pass a spending bill. Otherwise, the government will shut down for the first time in fifteen years. The action would, among other things, effectively shut down national parks, bring the issuance of tax refund checks to a halt, and slow paychecks for military personnel.
According to the April 7th foxnews.com article, “Boehner Rolls Dice With Stopgap Proposal, Defends Tea Party Budget Demands”, congressional leaders are working to put together a budget for the remainder of the year, and House Republicans want to move forward with a stopgap measure that would keep the lights on for another week.
House Speaker John Boehner was quoted as saying: “Our goal is to cut spending, not to shut down the government.”
However, the stopgap measure Boehner is supporting is described as risky, as it proposes cutting $12 billion, and funding the Pentagon for the rest of the fiscal year that ends September 30th.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid described the legislation as “fantasy.”
It’s reported that Obama, after meeting earlier in the week with Reid and Boehner, met with them again at the White House Wednesday evening. No deal was reached, but Obama described the discussion as “frank” and “constructive.”
Obama was quoted as having told reporters in the White House briefing room: “If we are serious about getting something done we should be able to complete a deal, get it passed and avert a shutdown.”
House Republicans initially passed a budget that would cut $61 billion from last year’s spending. Since then, Democrats have proposed cutting $33 billion. Negotiators have discussed raising that number to $40 billion.