Republicans step up pressure on Democrats over government shutdown
February 25th, 2011
12:18 PM ET
3 years ago

Republicans step up pressure on Democrats over government shutdown

Washington (CNN)– One week before a potential government shutdown House Republican leaders stepped up pressure on Senate Democrats by moving ahead with their proposal that would keep the government running for two more weeks while cutting $4 billion.

"If they walk away from this offer they are actively engineering a government shutdown, " House Deputy Whip Peter Roskam told reporters in a conference call Friday.

While the GOP effort is aimed at laying the blame on Senate Democrats if they fail to agree on the plan before funding runs out next Friday, the proposal also includes some cuts intended to find common ground with Senate Democrats and the White House.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said the $4 billion in spending cuts would come from program terminations that President Obama included in his proposed 2012 budget and the elimination of earmarks, two areas that Senate Democrats have said they are already considering.

A senior House Republican leadership source said $1.3 billion in cuts would come from eliminating six federal programs and $2.7 billion in savings would come from getting rid of earmarks in the spending measure that’s currently keeping the government operating. Leaders said details of the bill would be posted online later Friday afternoon.

“There is the potential for a lot of overlap in what Republicans and Democrats want to do to cut spending,” Sen. Chuck Schumer, a Democratic leader, said in a written statement responding to the proposal. But Schumer also said, “they are threatening to force a shutdown if they don't get everything they want. That is reckless and irresponsible."

House GOP Whip Kevin McCarthy stressed, "these are things that people have agreed to already."

House Republican Leaders said they are pushing ahead on the short term measure which would allow more time for the House and Senate to negotiate a longer term spending bill for the rest of the year.

A government shutdown is "not an acceptable or responsible option for Republicans,” Cantor said, but clearly tossing the ball in the Senate's court, added, "this will be our second action to prevent a shutdown compared with no action by Senate leaders." Cantor was referring to the more than $60 billion in spending cuts the House passed last week.


Filed under: Congress • Democrats • Republican
soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. NothingNew

    Wouldn't it be easier for the repukes to just go over to the senate, hold guns with live ammo to their heads and pull the trigger? Why not walk the walk if they are going to talk the talk. Seek out Palin – she has a bullseye template they can use.

    February 25, 2011 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  2. Lynda/Minnesota

    Ah, yes, here come the "we want compromise" TeaPers who are now ready to begin the media war game of blame the other Party. Funny how these fools think they are the know-alls in American politics. Unfortunately for these know-alls, they haven't the savvy to realize that, yes, Americans are watching, but aren't as ignorant as the TeaPers themselves seem to be. Many of us do want compromise, and yes, spending must be cut. It's what IS, or ISN'T being cut, that matters to us. Cutting all social spending isn't compromise, TeaPers - it's anarchy. Especially considering the big bucks are still going to defense, wars, and tax breaks to the upper 2%ers, of whom a great many have been spending much of their time blogging on CNNs Ticker with their incessant nonsense that not only do the working class need need to suffer the upper 2%ers tax breaks in silence, but that we should also consider it our PATRIOTIC duty to do so.

    February 25, 2011 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
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