LIVE BLOG: The latest shutdown developments
April 9th, 2011
09:04 AM ET
3 years ago

LIVE BLOG: The latest shutdown developments

Check back here often for all the latest developments in Washington as the deadline looms for a government shutdown. Read a full story here. Click here to find out what will be open/what will be closed in the event of a government shutdown.

2:00 p.m. ET
- According to the White House, President Obama has signed the short-term measure to keep the government running through the week. The measure, known as a continuing resolution, gives Congress time to pass a long-term budget deal that will fund the government through the end of the fiscal year.

12:37 a.m. ET - The House approved a short-funding extension 348-70. The bill funds the government until the end of the day Friday, April 15th.

12:28 a.m. ET
- A senior White House official told CNN White House Correspondent Dan Lothian that President Obama is expected to sign the short term continuing resolution into law sometime Saturday.

12:23 a.m. ET - Office of Management and Budget Director Jack Lew in a memo told federal agencies to "continue their normal operations."

"While the current Continuing Resolution (CR) expires at midnight tonight, Congress has indicated that it has reached agreement on a funding bill for the rest of the fiscal year. Earlier this evening, the Senate passed a short term CR that will extend current funding levels until the full-year bill can be passed and enacted next week. We expect the House to take up the CR shortly and for the President to sign this CR no later than tomorrow. As a result, at this time agencies are instructed to continue their normal operations," Lew wrote.

12:14 a.m. ET @deirdrewalshcnn: House voting now on stopgap bill funding government until Friday 4/15 – #shutdown averted

12:03 a.m. ET
- @LisaDCNN: Technically, WE ARE IN #SHUTDOWN: for just a few minutes. Until House vote magically erases it.

11:58 p.m. ET @LisaDCNN: 2 minutes to #shutdown, House still not back in session. #arrgh

11:49 p.m. ET
- From CNN White House Correspondent Dan Lothian: A senior administration official says this is a "very good night for the country."

Asked "Why didn't they wage a battle early on?" the officials responded, "We did things in the interest of having a night like tonight."

The official said that means cutting spending, keeping investments for the future and not giving in to demands on social issues.

A second senior official told reporters "Every time it (the negotiations) got bogged down the president would pick up the phone" and push both sides.

The president made it clear, this official said, that "he did not want this to become a family planning bill. He wanted this to be a spending bill."

11:34 p.m. ET
- @LisaDCNN: CONFIRMED: Sen. Rand Paul voted 'no' to Senate CR. In statement, said the bill does not fix spending and debt problems. #tcot #p2 #teaparty

Paul entered a statement into the Senate record explaining his vote: "Mr. President, I voted against this short-term continuing resolution for the same reason I voted against the last one and the one before that – because it does not set us on a path to fixing the spending and debt problems our country is facing. As I have said before, there is not much of a difference between a $1.5 trillion deficit and a $1.6 trillion deficit – both will lead us to a debt crisis that we may not recover from."

11:27 p.m. ET - House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi released a statement Friday night: “President Obama and Leader Reid should be commended for their leadership and perseverance to keep the government open. House Democrats look forward to reviewing the components of the final funding measure. The American people’s top priority is creating jobs, and we will continue to measure every proposal by whether it creates jobs, strengthens the middle class and responsibly reduces the deficit.”

11:18 p.m. ET - The Senate has passed a short-term budget deal that will keep the government funded through next Thursday.

The measure still has to be approved by the House of Representatives.

11:17 p.m. ET
- @LisaDCNN: MEANWHILE, House mems told to standby for a vote there, @deirdrewalshcnn has learned. GOP whip McCarthy: We hope to meet the deadline.

11:13 p.m. ET - McConnell returned the thank you to Reid but added that this is "just the beginning of what we need to do to get our fiscal house in order."

11:10 p.m. ET - Reid read the joint statement on the Senate floor and thanked Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell for his work during the process.

11:08 p.m. ET – Reid and Boehner released a joint statement after the announcement of a deal: “We have agreed to an historic amount of cuts for the remainder of this fiscal year, as well as a short-term bridge that will give us time to avoid a shutdown while we get that agreement through both houses and to the President. We will cut $78.5 billion below the President’s 2011 budget proposal, and we have reached an agreement on the policy riders. In the meantime, we will pass a short-term resolution to keep the government running through Thursday. That short-term bridge will cut the first $2 billion of the total savings.”

11:05 p.m. ET - @LisaDCNN: #SHUTDOWN DEAL DETAILS (at last): no ban on funds for planned parenthood, but senate will have sep. vote on that.

11:04 p.m. ET - President Obama spoke from the Blue Room at the White House. The president said the agreement "invests in our (America's) future while making the greatest annual spending cut in our history." Thanked House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for their "leadership and dedication" during the negotiation process.

"The government will remain open for business," Obama said. "In the final hours before our government would have been forced to shut down, leaders in both parties reached an agreement that will allow our small businesses to get the loans they need, our families to get the mortgages they applied for, and hundreds of thousands of Americans to show up at work and take home their paychecks on time."

11:04 p.m. ET @LisaDCNN: #SHUTDOWN DEAL DETAILS more: Dems agreed to a vote on the senate floor on a repeal of the health care law. #tcot #p2 #tlot

11:01 p.m. ET - A senior Democratic source told CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett that the budget deal would cut between $38 and $39 billion dollars over the 2011 fiscal year.

10:56 p.m. ET
- @wolfblitzercnn: President Obama about to address nation from White House on budget deal. No govt #shutdown. Watch #CNN

10:54 p.m. ET - Boehner announced Friday night that Democratic and Republican negotiators have reached a budget deal that will avoid a government shutdown.

Boehner said the House will pass a short-term measure that will keep the government funded through the middle of next week, when the longer-term package will be enacted.

"This has been a lot of discussion and a long fight," he said. Republicans fought to "create a better environment for job creators in our country."



10:49 p.m. ET
- @LisaDCNN: Clock race: usually votes take 15- 30 min in each chamber. Drive to WH another 15. BUT does look good for fed workforce.

10:47 p.m. ET @LisaDCNN: REMEMBER: shutdown not averted technically until H. And Sen both pass short-term CR and pres. signs. @alivelshi

10:38 p.m. ET
- CNN Senior Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash reported that sources in the room say Speaker John Boehner has announced to House Republicans that a budget deal has been reached– and that there would be a stopgap funding bill averting a government shutdown.

A senior Democratic source told CNN the temporary spending bill would fund the government until Thursday and would include two billion in spending cuts, according to CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett.

CNN Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh reported that a senior GOP aide in the meeting called it the "largest real dollar spending cut in American history" and said the proposal would cut more than $500 billion from the federal budget over the next 10 years.

10:33 p.m. ET
– CNN Senior Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash was told by sources in the GOP meeting that Boehner is outlining the parameters of a tentative deal, while saying there is no firm agreement yet. He is telling the GOP caucus that he believes there should be short term measure to keep the government running after midnight tonight.

10:21 p.m. ET - @LisaDCNN: WAITING GAME: outside GOP mtng, hearing applause. Overheard GOP member in hall say "republicans will be happy"... But no final yet.

9:33 p.m. ET - @AriFleischer: I'm glad there was no Twitter when I lived thru the Cong debate in '95 over a gvt closure. This micro-play-by-play is rough.

9:20 p.m. ET - @teapartynation: Boehner is selling us out tonight. We will primary Boehner next year. #tcot #teaparty #GOP #TPN #TPP #SGP

8:59 p.m. ET - House Republicans will meet behind closed doors at 9:45 p.m. to discuss the budget negotiations, GOP Conference Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, told reporters as he left a GOP leadership meeting. Hensarling said that there is still no deal, CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett reported.

8:58 p.m. ET
- A spokesman for Reid said the senator is not scheduled to speak at any specific time. 10:30 p.m. is the earliest Reid could speak at this point. He was previously scheduled to speak at 9 p.m. ET., CNN Capitol Hill Radio Correspondent Lisa Desjardins reported.

8:39 p.m. ET - From CNN Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh: GOP leaders sent an email to all House Republicans Friday that said, "We would like to clear up some confusion and relay that there has not yet been a deal reached. The negotiations are ongoing."

House Republican leaders are meeting now in Speaker John Boehner's office.

8:24 p.m. ET - From CNN Chief National Correspondent John King:

A senior Republican source close to the negotiations said that disagreements over policy riders– including the abortion rider issue– are "essentially resolved".

The source said a deal is still contingent on an agreement on the final spending numbers– but that negotiators feel they're close enough to a deal that passing a one-week continuing resolution is worth doing Friday night.

(At the same time, Democratic sources told CNN Senior Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash that the rider issues are not resolved)

7:47 p.m. ET - CNN Congressional Producers Ted Barret and Deirdre Walsh just walked with Boehner as he left dinner at McCarthy's office and returned to his suite in the Capitol. The exchange:

Q: How you feeling how are the talks?

Boehner: "I've been a happy warrior all day."

Q: You talked to the President – is there a deal? Close to a deal?

Boehner: "Not yet"

Q: Will you vote on short term CR (continuing resolution) to give yourself more time?

Boehner: "Only if there's a deal."

Q: Optimistic you'll get a deal before midnight?

Boehner: "You know me I was born with a glass half full."

7:44 p.m. ET - Reid is now expected to speak on the Senate floor at 9 p.m., instead of 8 p.m. as previously planned, CNN Capitol Hill Radio Correspondent Lisa Desjardins reported.

7:20 p.m. ET - CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett just saw Boehner slipping by reporters out the back door of his office and coming downstairs to Republican California Rep. Kevin McCarthy's office. Boehner entered a back door where a dinner buffet was set up.

7:12 p.m. ET - An aide to John Boehner told CNN that Boehner called President Obama at 6:30 p.m. Friday evening to talk about spending cuts, CNN Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh reported. The aide says there is no deal yet.

6:48 p.m. ET - From CNN Senior Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash: A Senate Democratic source said they actually have several different versions drafted of a short term measure to keep the government running: a 3 day “clean,” a 1 week that funds the troops and more.

But I’m told no decision has been made and they’re “keeping their options open” on what to do, and when to do it. It all depends on how the talks for the long term bill go over the next several hours.

6:45 p.m. ET
- From CNN Senior White House Correspondent Ed Henry:

A senior Democratic source told CNN negotiators are now focusing on a proposal to keep the government open for three days while leaders try to finish a broader budget deal this weekend as a last-ditch effort to stave off a crisis.

The proposal would not include any controversial legislative riders on controversial topics like abortion, but the Democratic source cautioned it is not clear the plan can pass the House and Senate by the midnight deadline to keep the government running.

It is, however, important to note that the White House on Thursday said President Obama could sign another short-term continuing resolution if broader negotiations were making progress.

6:34 p.m. ET - CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett spoke to Reid at the Capitol. The interaction:

Q: Any update, sir?

A: We’re still talking.

Q: Do you feel they’re giving any on the Title X issue, which is so important to you?

A: I don’t know if they’re giving on it or not but all the pro-life senators here are saying drop the damn thing. You saw the list of them, Coburn, Ensign, the guy from Massachusetts.

Q-But in your talks with them do they seem to be easing on that at this point or are they still sticking as hard as they have been.

A-I’m sure they’re feeling what the Republicans over here are feeling, that it’s a crazy thing to do. But we don’t have it done yet.

5:52 p.m. ET – Reid is now expected to speak on the Senate floor at 8 p.m. ET instead of 6 p.m. ET as previously planned, CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett reported.

5:00 p.m. ET
- A White House source told CNN White House Correspondent Dan Lothian: “We are more optimistic now than we were 4 hours ago.”

The same source said there is a “good chance” that we’ll hear from the president today.

4:29 p.m. ET
– Reid is expected to speak on the Senate floor at 6 p.m. ET, CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett reported.

4:01 p.m. ET – The president has canceled a trip with his family scheduled for this weekend, CNN White House Correspondent Dan Lothian reported.

“The President will remain in Washington, DC this weekend as he continues to work with Congressional leaders to reach an agreement on the budget," White House Spokesman Josh Earnest said. "The First Family’s trip to Williamsburg has been postponed.”

3:55 p.m. ET - Speaker Boehner waded through a crowd of reporters as he walked from the men's room back to the House floor, CNN Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh reported. Though he refused to answer questions on budget negotiations, when asked how he was feeling, Boehner joked, "I'm a happy warrior."

3:06 p.m. ET - In 1995, according to Congressional Research Service report, Congress appropriated funds for the troop pay before the longer shutdown in December 1995, CNN Pentagon Supervising Producer Adam Levine reported Friday.

2:47 p.m. ET - @LisaDCNN: PERSPECTIVE: The potential freeze of military death payments is real. But telling press about it is also part of WH pressuring GOP to deal.

2:41 p.m. ET - The $100,000 death benefit for those killed in the line of duty will not be paid during a government shutdown, a defense official said Friday. About 100-150 claims are processed a month, generally quickly, to help meet expenses in days after the death. The official, who briefed reporters about the potential shutdown impact at the Pentagon on the condition the official’s name not be used, said it could lead to families having trouble meeting death expenses, the CNN Pentagon Unit reported. The official also said the money would be paid when the shutdown is completed.

2:17 p.m. ET - @wolfblitzercnn: Except names & numbers, so much of gov't shutdown story reminds of '95 shutdown. Let's see if fallout is similar.

2:16 p.m. ET - At the same press conference, Reid insisted that Democrats can still reach a deal with Republicans.

"All we need for them to say is the agreement we made last night will be fulfilled," he said. "There's no question about the number," Reid declared. "(Speaker) John Boehner's having a difficult time in his caucus, but that doesn't mean we can't have an agreement."

Reid said if a deal cannot be reached, he will try to push through a short-term funding bill that would buy negotiators more time and fund the Pentagon for the rest of the fiscal year.

2:12 p.m. ET - At a press conference Reid said that Republicans can either agree to a deal that cuts spending or it can "shut down the government over women's access to heath care. If that sounds ridiculous, it's because it is ridiculous."

If a deal cannot be reached before midnight, it will become "crystal clear" to most people that "Democrats were reasonable and Republicans were responsible for shutting down the government," he said.

Reid made his announcement while surrounded by what appeared to be virtually the entire Senate Democratic caucus.

2:08 p.m. ET - @DanaBashCNN: Entire dem sen caucus at 11th hour presser re govt shutdown showdown.

1:45 p.m. ET - @LisaDCNN: FINALLY, a little good news: The Cherry Blossom parade will go on in a #shutdown. DC police stepping up, wld fill in for Park Service.

1:30 p.m. ET - As the clock continues to tick down to a government shutdown Friday night, the White House is moving forward with plans to make-do with a skeleton staff. Normally 1,781 people work in the Executive Office of the President, which staffs the White House offices, the residence, the vice president's office and residence and other critical departments like the National Security staff, the Council on Economic Advisors and the office of the National Drug Czar, CNN White House Producer Lesa Jansen reported. Read here what happens at the White House if the government shuts down.

1:07 p.m. ET
- At a press conference Boehner said the budget talks are ongoing.

"Most of the policy issues have been dealt with," he said. He insisted that the remaining key disputes revolve around spending cuts.

"When we say we're serious about cutting spending, we're damn serious about it," Boehner said.

Democrats insist that programs related to abortion and women's health - not spending levels - are the focus of the dispute at this point.

12:57 p.m. ET - @LisaDCNN: DHS in a #shutdown: 20% furloughed. All security staff stay. BUT e-verify – where employers check for illegal immigrants – shuts down.

12:12 p.m. ET - Democratic women senators spoke in the Senate gallery. Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski said the negotiations are a "radical agenda against women" and are about defunding Planned Parenthood.

"They want to take our mammograms away," she said.

On the Senate floor earlier Friday, Republican Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl said: "If you want an abortion, you go to Planned Parenthood, and that's well over 90 percent of what Planned Parenthood does. So this is a red herring to say that somehow the government's going to be shut down over the fact that Planned Parenthood won't get a $300 million gift from the taxpayers of America."

CNN later contacted his office and received this statement: "His remark was not intended to be a factual statement, but rather to illustrate that Planned Parenthood, an organization that receives millions of dollars in taxpayer funding, does subsidize abortions."

12:11 p.m. ET – The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives will continue to conduct its “core mission” of preventing and investigating violent crime, including combating gangs and gun-running, in case there is a government shutdown, Senior Justice Department Producer Terry Frieden reported. The ATF says “most” of its 2,400 agents will be on regular duty, but some of the 1,700 support personnel and 800 regulatory inspectors will likely be categorized as “non-essential” for furlough purposes, according to agency officials.

11:57 a.m. ET - Following their caucus meeting, all Senate Democrats are expected to hold a news conference on the budget around 2 p.m., CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett reported.

11:55 a.m. ET - GOP sources familiar with the negotiations confirm what Reid said on the record this morning, that negotiators have agreed on a $38 billion cut from current spending levels for the rest of the fiscal year. Sources in both parties caution the exact figure could go up or down, CNN Senior Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash and CNN Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh reported.

11:53 a.m. ET - Local governments and communities across the country are preparing for a potential federal government shutdown and CNN television affiliates are monitoring the potential affects. New Hampshire community leaders are worried housing initiatives will be left unfunded. One Connecticut mayor has already declared an economic emergency and a wife of a service member in Florida is worried her family will not receive a paycheck. Families at Fort Bragg in Fayetteville, NC, especially those with deployed spouses in Iraq and Afghanistan, are worried about getting paid and national parks across North Carolina, from Cape Hatteras to the Appalachian Trail are making contingency plans as they wait to see if their gates will be locked this weekend. And federal workers in Utah, where tens of thousands of people draw a paycheck from the federal government, are preparing for the worst.

11:50 a.m. ET - Boehner announced Friday he will return his pay to the U.S. Treasury in the event of a shutdown, CNN Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh reported.

In a letter to House members Friday, Boehner wrote: "In the event of a lapse in appropriations for fiscal year 2011 causing a government shutdown, I will return any and all compensation that I would otherwise be entitled during such a lapse in appropriations. During such shutdown, all members would be paid pursuant to the provisions of the 27th Amendment to the United States Constitution which states that no law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened. This requirement of the Constitution does not bar individual members from refusing to accept their compensation for any time when a lapse in appropriations occurs. Should you desire to have your compensation returned to the United States Treasury, you may do so and House Administration Committee can assist in executing your decision."

11:48 a.m. ET - In a statement obtained by CNN Chief White House Correspondent Ed Henry, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said discussions are "continuing."

"This morning, the President spoke separately to Speaker Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Reid. Discussions between the leaders and the White House aimed at reaching a budget agreement are continuing," Carney said in the statement.

11:23 a.m. ET - Senate Democratic caucus meeting was pushed back one hour to 1 p.m. ET, CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett reported.

11:19 a.m. ET - Female Democratic senators are scheduled to discuss the budget impasse at noon ET, CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett reported.

11:08 a.m. ET - Reid on the Senate floor said "as a legislator I'm frustrated... as a father and a grandfather, I'm appalled." He talked specifically about his wife, his daughter and his nine grandchildren, accusing Republicans of threatening "women's health."



11:00 a.m. ET
- @LisaDCNN: IF YOU BLINKED: You missed @SpeakerBoehner. No ?s. 55 secs if you count his "Good morning" One reporter just called it "surreal".

10:59 a.m. ET - @LisaDCNN: HERE WE GO – BOEHNER: Only one reason we don't have a deal – spending. "We are close to a resolution on policy issues"

10:58 a.m. ET - The third branch of government—the federal judiciary—is the one area of government that plans to operate normally through at least the first week of a shutdown, having secured “non appropriated” funds to handle such an emergency, CNN Supreme Court Producer Bill Mears reported. The money comes from fees gathered from bankruptcy and other filings, which the courts now have the discretion to spend s they see fit.

10:53 a.m. ET - In an off-camera briefing with reporters Reid said "women's health" remains the sticking points in the negotiations, CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett reported.

"When I left the White House last night, as I said on the Senate floor, I felt comfortable, cautiously optimistic that something would happen because the number had been agreed on. The president said, okay we'll do the number. The only issue left was women's health. Title X. That's it. There was no other issue. I want an agreement but this has been a moving target. But now we've come to realize that the moving target is focused like a bull's eye on women in America," Reid said.

"I'm concerned and upset that this government is going to shutdown because of wanting to take away protections that my nine grandchildren have in this country. We can't accept that. That's an issue, as the president said last night that we're not bending on. The number, we bent on that. We agreed on a number. We are not, we are not bending on women's health."

Reid said the agreed upon number is $78 billion from Obama's proposed 2011 spending or $38 billion from current spending.

"The Speaker is the one who came up with the number, we didn't invent it," Reid said.

10:40 a.m. - Reid is expected on the Senate floor at 11 a.m. ET to make remarks on the budget.

10:29 a.m. ET – Senate Democrats are set to caucus at noon ET.

10:24 a.m. ET @DanaBashCNN: Sen dems now trying to raise money off poss shutdown w/ their political mantra: repubs willing to shutdown over abortion. Gop says spending

10:15 a.m. ET – The last time there was a government shutdown, Bill Clinton was president and Republicans controlled both the House and Senate. Read more here.

10:08 a.m. ET - House Speaker John Boehner is expected to address reporters at 10:25 a.m. ET, CNN Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh reported.

10:05 a.m. ET – Rep. Michele Bachmann remained confident that an agreement will be reached Friday over the budget.

"In all likelihood they will reach an agreement today," Bachmann said on CNN's "Newsroom" Friday.

The Minnesota Republican said she will not vote for the funding bill because she said it fails to reform the current health care law.

9:15 a.m. ET - A spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, disputed an assertion by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, on Friday that abortion is the final stumbling block for negotiators trying to reach a budget agreement that would prevent a government shutdown.

"While nothing will be decided until everything is decided, the largest issue is still spending cuts," spokesman Michael Steel said. "The American people want to cut spending to help the private sector create jobs - and the Democrats that run Washington don't."

9:00 a.m. ET - Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, indicated Friday morning that a dispute over abortion is the only issue holding up a budget deal that would prevent a government shutdown.

"This all deals with women's health. Everything (else) has been resolved. Everything," he said.

8:15 a.m. ET - President Obama is likely to get a phone call from congressional leaders in the mid-morning to get an assessment on whether there has been any progress to avert a government shutdown, according to senior officials close to the talks.

–The officials stressed there is no specific time set up for the call yet because Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, are waiting, in the words of one official, for “when there’s progress to report rather than an arbitrary time.”

–Late Thursday night, Obama set a broad deadline for the leaders when he told reporters he was expecting some sort of an update long before the midnight deadline for a shutdown.

–“What I’ve said to the Speaker and what I’ve said to Harry Reid is because the machinery of the shutdown is necessarily starting to move, I expect an answer in the morning,” said Obama. “Any my hope is, is that I’ll be able to announce to the American people sometime relatively early in the day that a shutdown has been averted, that a deal has been completed .”

–Various officials in both parties close to the talks said such a breakthrough did not come overnight, though they’re still hopeful it can happen later today.


Filed under: Budget • Government Shutdown
soundoff (146 Responses)
  1. Micheal Miller

    It says something of "our" elected officials when a soldier can fight and die for them but not be paid when those who sent them over can receive pay for doing nothing. When I watch these officials on TV wearing suits that cost as much as my house payment, I realize that their only concern is for yhemselfs and thier future prosperity.
    If they are really looking for someone to blame, then blame ME and the rest of americans that voted these over staffed, over paid, self devoted individuals into office.

    April 8, 2011 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  2. Denise

    The Republicans will be remembered like King John stripping the Magna Carta.

    They didn't stress the deficit was the problem during the Bush administration.

    The deficit was being reduced during the Clinton administration. Everyone knows this.

    They will be remembered as those who tried to sell off America to the corporations. While they played to their radical religious zealots.

    They say they have a mandate. They don't.

    Greed and corruption will be their legacy.

    April 8, 2011 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  3. GrapeNut

    This is crazy. They are trying to say "it's womens's health" when the issue is really tax dollars paying for abortion. This is ridicules for the American tax dollars to pay for murder! I for one do not want MY MONEY paying to kill a baby... If a woman needs healthcare that is one thing but the real issue is abortion and I say if you play YOU PAY FOR IT WITH YOUR OWN MONEY AND NOT THE TAXPAYERS MONEY!!! There, you still have the "Right" to do as You wish with Your body and I don't have to pay for it! Military Families SHOULD NOT even have to worry about this crap Obama and Congress. Pull your heads outta your behind and take paycuts yourself, pay for your own healthcare or do without like many of us and wonder where your next meal is coming from or better yet YOU CARRY AN 80LB plus PACK in 130 degree weather in the darn desert thousands of miles from home for FREE then you can have a reason to stick your head in your behind.

    April 8, 2011 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  4. Tax the rich

    If the rich only paid their fair share of taxes, the poor, weak, and vulnerable could be taken care of in this country, as in more civilized nations, such as the Scandinavian countries. The rich can afford to pay more taxes and should.

    April 8, 2011 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  5. RN05

    I think this shut down is disgusting...the republicans want to make the democrats especially look bad if they don't pass the bill right now for giving military soldiers their pay, but sneaking other things in that bill that we don't want....I am sick and tired of the fear factor being a manipulative tactic. I have friends and family in the military and I understand what that will do to them, if the government including republicans and democrats don't care about them their families will have to take care of them....No body cares about you but family.

    April 8, 2011 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  6. Judith Ferren

    We the people of the USA need to take hold of this mess on Capitol Hill. George Washington was right when he said "to have two parties running this country would end up with both parties fighting for eachs party rather than the good of the country and the people". He was right. When bush was in office his party started the biggest spending in history, and his party ALL gave him a blank check. This took our country down the biggest recession in history.

    Right now the TEA PARTY seems to be running the Republician party. They say What they want and the republicians jump to it, shove-ing it down the rest of America's throats. Why not put out a SPECIAL VOTE by the people on the issues congress and senate must past. Let the Americans really have a say in government, and let our votes count.

    It's sad but true, the people in Washington DO NOT REPRESENT the average American. They represent BIG MONEY like oil companies and Big BUSINESS. Parties like the tea party do not speak for me, yet they control votes. What do Independant votes like me do, and ther are a lot of independant voters.

    If there is a shut down those in congress and senate should not get paid during the shut down. If Americans must pay the price for their fights, then they should too.

    J. Ferren

    April 8, 2011 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  7. Anonymous

    To much debt....the gov't needs to reduce spending and not deprive those working pay check to pay their salary

    April 8, 2011 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  8. B. McCheyne

    tipical republican agenda, give the poor nothing, give the rich everything, and make the middle-class pay for everything. and the republicans talking about spending is a joke, Bush took 3 trillion and turned it into a 6 trillion deficet

    April 8, 2011 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  9. Dianna Johnson

    I would like to know what would happen if our forces decided not to do their jobs, just shut down. Why should they protect a government that shuts down on them. NO Pay NO Work

    April 8, 2011 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  10. Jon Ward

    Listening to the House leader about made me sick ! Obama inherited our debt from Bush after Clinton had the Government in the BLACK. Throughout history, Democrats has fought for the working people and the Republicans has fought for Big Business and nothing has changed. If this Government can't agree on how to take care of it's PEOPLE then they all should be "LAID OFF" and we all elect a new Government, from the same Party who will either agree to help the American People or hurt the American people, either way I don't give a shit. I am a Retired Ironworker, we build the buildings and bridges in this Country, and until the Radical Polititians are voted out this Country will always be in termoil. It scares me to death what our Children and for Generations to come are going to have to deal with concidering the screwed up Politions we have elected. If the Government shuts down then I think The members of the House, Senate, and the President should also be laid off and work until they get their act together and help the people who sign their paychecks.

    April 8, 2011 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  11. warren packard

    If my household were over our head in debt and me and my wife were arguing over whether we should cut our expensesby less than one penny of every dollar it wouldn't matter because with this approach we are going under anyway..

    April 8, 2011 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  12. Malinda

    What a memorable BIRTHDAY it will be today if it's the year the Government shuts down!!! Whats wrong with the world today??? Too many people need to grow up & be responcible~ESPECIALLY the officials we elect to take care of OUR COUNTRY & OUR GOVERNMENT!!! It is SO SAD those republicans that cannot see the damage this will cause all the way from bottom up! I hope people learn a lesson from this & all the other Childish Behavior & get out there & vote next election for the officials that are & have been standing up for US & our Country's Best~

    April 8, 2011 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  13. warren packard

    OUr government is a joke.but the laugh is on us.

    April 8, 2011 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  14. Joe

    who still gets paid the congress,the senate and the president its just a political move for the next election

    April 8, 2011 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  15. The Tea Party Needs to Shut Down the Government . . .

    To keep woman from getting access to reproductive health.

    April 8, 2011 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  16. Wayne

    It is a sad day when the people we voted into office to run this country can not get their jobs done and still get paid for not doing their jobs. In addition, when the leaders of Congress do not know they will still get paid, how can they decide what the impact will be on the nation and the federal workers that will not be paid. I was once a federal worker and I know my job was a damn sight more important than these pontificating windbags in congress, but I would be out of a job if I still worked for the government. I say vote them all out; the lawyers, the doctors, the political know it all's, and lets put the common man/woman in congress. We at least know how to balance our budgets.

    April 8, 2011 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  17. Anonymous

    "In an off-camera briefing with reporters Reid said "women's health" remains the sticking points in the negotiations, CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett reported." Isn't he the same politician who was concerned about cutting money from the Cowboy Poetry society?? Who cares what he thinks or says, for that matter. Nancy Pelosi and Sen.Reid spent all of last year cramming Obamacare down our throats. Maybe they should have passed a budget instead!!

    April 8, 2011 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  18. doris

    when the government close down dose congress get their checks i'm not talking about their staff but congress

    April 8, 2011 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  19. leona

    "In an off-camera briefing with reporters Reid said "women's health" remains the sticking points in the negotiations, CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett reported." Who cares what Reid says? He was also concerned about cutting money from the Cowboy Poetry Society too !! He's a kook ! He and Pelosi should have passed a budget last year and we wouldn't be doing this at all. They were too busy pushing Obamacare!!

    April 8, 2011 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  20. Terri

    Why don't they address all the military families they are about to put in financial jepardy. Most of the time most of our important bills like rent, car, and sometimes utilities are set up on our paychecks. If we don't get paid none of that will get paid we will lose everything. And why should we as military families keep on sacrificing for a government who is willing to allow this to happen to us?

    April 8, 2011 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  21. Ken Brown

    Can anyone please explain to me why it's always the little people that have to pay for all these things the government spends our tax dollars on, then are the first to suffer for the budget cuts being discussed?

    April 8, 2011 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  22. Jeff Snodgrass

    If they dont pass this bill today, I believe everyone in the House and Senate should have to go to all the lower enlisted service members and appologize to them since they wont be able to feed their families. The majority of lower enlisted families live paycheck to paycheck. Saving money is virtually impossible considering some of these families can't even make ends meet. What are they supposed to do? This is ashame.

    April 8, 2011 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  23. Christina

    My husband is deployed to Afghanistan, and is supposed to come home on R&R on the 15th. I cant find any information on whether the shutdown will keep him from going on leave. I read that federal workers arent allowed to take leave, but nothing is specified on military. If anyone has information or can find some information, please let us know! thanks.

    April 8, 2011 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  24. Luke Brown

    Hahaha. Boenher will return his paycheck to the Treasury! How noble of him. How about giving up his limo and driver? How about his health insurance? How about his taxpayer financed travel? How about his multimillion staff?

    He doesn't mind that social security checks will be delayed. He doesn't mind that Federal workers will be laid off. He doesn't mind that American soldiers won't get paid or that veterans benefits will be disrupted. And, thank God, the wealthiest Americans will continue to enjoy tax-free living at the expense of us working people.

    The Republican Party is a disgrace to this country. They are shameless hypocrites.

    April 8, 2011 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  25. RetiredBear

    We all get paid for performance. How about legislators? Budget must be approved by October 1st so if its not approved by July 4 months ahead then cut their pay 5%, August 20%, September 50%, October still no budget agreement passed then they loose 100% of their salary. Pay for Performance take it to Washington.

    April 8, 2011 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
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