Washington (CNN) - Senate Democrats rejected Tuesday a House Republican leadership proposal to extend government funding for two weeks past March 4, the date when current funding expires.
House Republicans want the short-term bill to cut $4 billion in government spending during those two weeks - a prorated figure based on the more than $60 billion in spending cuts the House passed for the rest of this fiscal year.
"It's the same thing as what they already passed and that was already rejected," a Senate Democratic aide said about the House Republican proposal. The aide, who was not authorized to speak on the record about the negotiations, said Republicans "indicated they won't go any further."
A senior House GOP aide, reacting to the rejection by Senate Democrats, stressed the details of what will be cut in the short-term bill are still being worked out but that "$4 billion is not unreasonable."
The aide, who declined to speak on the record about private talks with Senate, said the goal is to find cuts "that Senate Democrats would have a hard time opposing." The aide said the House is likely to vote on the plan next week.
Top aides for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, and others met Wednesday to try to hammer out an agreement to pass a short-term bill.
Reid on Tuesday proposed a 30-day extension of government funding at current levels. But Brad Dayspring, a spokesman for House Majority Eric Cantor, responded "I'm not sure how Senator Reid rejected spending cuts that he hasn't seen yet, but it certainly reinforces the notion that he is willing to shut down the government rather than cut one penny in federal spending."
With both sides digging in their heels, it's becoming increasingly uncertain if a compromise can be reached in the remaining days to avert a government shutdown.