Senate GOP growing impatient with House
October 11th, 2013
07:59 PM ET
9 months ago

Senate GOP growing impatient with House

Washington (CNN) - House Speaker John Boehner has a day or two max to strike a debt ceiling and government funding deal before some of his Republican Senate colleagues move more aggressively on their own ideas, several impatient GOP Senators have told CNN.

The Senators say they are willing to give Boehner a bit more time, about 24 to 48 hours, to come to an agreement with the White House to raise the debt ceiling and reopen the government.

One option Boehner is currently pursuing, a six week increase to the debt ceiling, is becoming more and more unpopular, say multiple Senate GOP sources.

That plan would push the new deadline for raising U.S. borrowing authority to the end of November, just in time for Thanksgiving and the holiday shopping season, which could hurt retailers and cause economic repercussions.

The Senate sources are also extremely concerned about the partial government shutdown, which House Republican leadership wants to deal with only after the debt ceiling is raised.

While the shutdown has done no one any favors in the polls, it has been particularly damaging to the Republican Party, whose poll numbers are at near-historic lows.

A bipartisan group of about 10 senators, led by Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Sen. Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, met Friday afternoon to try to find a way forward in the Senate, according to sources familiar with the meeting.

Collins' plan for a longer extension of the debt limit and government funding has gained some traction. Her proposal would repeal the 2.3% tax on medical devices, which is used to help pay for Obamacare, and give federal agencies greater flexibility to deal with the forced spending cuts known as sequestration.

Democrats are unlikely to give sequester flexibility a warm reception but the broader concept of long-term solutions on the debt ceiling and government funding bill seem to be gaining bipartisan steam in the Senate. Repeal of the medical device tax is also a popular idea among Senate Democrats, receiving an overwhelming majority in one vote.

Another popular idea, particularly among conservatives determined to score a victory against the Affordable Care Act, would be to institute income verification for those receiving Obamacare subsidies, meant to prevent fraud.

One GOP Senator said an idea discussed with the President in a Friday morning meeting was to add a provision to the government spending bill that would replace the sequester-which would appeal to Democrats–with some reforms to Medicare proposed by the President, which appeal to Republicans who are concerned about entitlement spending's long-term impact on the debt.

–CNN's Bryan Koenig contributed to this report.

soundoff (90 Responses)
  1. Dave

    Why is it that while watching/hearing the report of Dana Bash, she says "...'maybe' a day or two max...," yet when reading the article it definitely states "...a day or two...."?

    In addition, if the GOP senators roll out a plan before Boehner, would they be more likely to include a deal to also reopen the government?

    October 11, 2013 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  2. Suzanne

    Income verification should already be happening and be MANDATORY for anyone receiving subsidies, state or federal assistance.

    October 11, 2013 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  3. minister

    we sent a seal team to somalia and libya to capture terrorist, but the most dangerous one's are operating
    in d.c. in the capital building; clue: check the u.s. congress.

    October 11, 2013 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  4. PS

    Now THAT is how it's supposed to work – your own party giving you an ultimatum if you don't do your job. Bravo, GOP senators... it's just too bad you didn't do this BEFORE the darn shutdown! Sorry but you lose points on that accord.

    October 11, 2013 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  5. Hikertom

    I have a good idea. Why not just vote all the Republicans out of office next year?
    That would solve a lot of problems.

    October 11, 2013 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  6. DB

    Thank God for the Senate!

    October 11, 2013 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  7. anonymous

    I cant wait for the next elections....We need our voices heard.

    October 11, 2013 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  8. alex

    I live off ssi what the hell is going on come on that all I have I hate this

    October 11, 2013 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  9. JohnRJohnson

    NO DEAL! Republicans are still making demands before they'll agree to raise the debt ceiling or open the government. They still have not learned their lesson. Maybe they won't until their approval rating is 0%. It will be there soon.

    October 11, 2013 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  10. Frmer Mrine

    Hold on Bonehead. Obama will cave. He did before, he will again. He has only a very little spine and no cajones. Just wait it out. He'll give in.

    October 11, 2013 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  11. Amber

    Doesn't linking the health care subsidies to tax credits serve as income verification?

    October 11, 2013 09:38 pm at 9:38 pm |
  12. Jerry Okamura

    If the House does not budge, how can the Senators do anything about it?

    October 11, 2013 09:40 pm at 9:40 pm |
  13. darrtown

    The sooner we open the government and raise the debt ceiling the better. Had Boehner approached Obama with a plan about budget cuts (which is where we are now after all the histronics) and left the ACA alone there would have been a deal. and there is no reason at all to damage the countries full faith and credit. Even republicans need big donors and if the republicans wreck the markets the money will dry up. I lay all of this fiasco at the feet of the Tea Party.

    October 11, 2013 09:40 pm at 9:40 pm |
  14. Ned

    Thank you Senator Collins for distilling the rhetoric and crafting a rational plan that has the potential for bipartisan support. Hopefully some of our friends in house will also decide play nice in the sandbox...

    October 11, 2013 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  15. Retired Army in Texas

    This whole saga has long since, become a bad joke. If Boehner isn't the most incompetent House Speaker ever, I don't know who is. What an embarrassment.

    October 11, 2013 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  16. Joe Smith

    When push comes to shoving, someone will get hurt. This case the american citizens.

    October 11, 2013 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  17. kevin

    i hope they get it together.

    October 11, 2013 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  18. Larry L

    We must assume the Senate GOP members are planning a filibuster – the only idea they've had for five years.

    October 11, 2013 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  19. Robert N. constant

    In the meantime all Americans fed up with this Republican government shutdown CAN do something. First transfer your business wherever possible away from Republican owned businesses. A little checking will identify the people making this government shutdown possible. Find some good Independents or Democrats to do business with.
    Secondly. In a few weeks you will get to vote some local and state Republicans out of office. Do it Root them out so they cannot use their local power to support the GOP ticket in the 2014 Congressional races.
    These people are all in bed together. Throw all of these Republicans out and make a clean sweep.

    October 11, 2013 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  20. shoos

    The American public is past impatient with our miserable ineffective Congress.

    October 11, 2013 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  21. Scott

    The House GOP is a joke. This sad shutdown episode has shown Boehner to be incompetent.

    October 11, 2013 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  22. jag51

    "The Senators say they are willing to give Boehner a bit more time, about 24 to 48 hours, to come to an agreement with the White House to raise the debt ceiling and reopen the government."
    These Senators are more concerned with being re-elected than standing by what their party represents. If you reopen the government, it is crucial that you resolve the debt ceiling crisis. The inflated government payroll is the central point in this entire fiscal debacle. Financing numerous wars is, of course, another. We cannot allow our national debt to continue to grow at such astronomical rates. It's not rocket science, it's a fact. We cannot allow future generations to be held responsible for debt incurred by their predessors without some effort on our part to rectify the situation now.

    October 11, 2013 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  23. Anonymous

    Let's get this whole thing done already. Everyone knows how this would end. GOP would cave in and be ashamed of themselves and ACA would survive for the 42nd time.

    October 11, 2013 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  24. Duh

    Better hurry up before modern day Rome happens b/c we Harry's really know best..

    October 11, 2013 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  25. cynthia

    Hopefully the House and the Senate get their acts together. This is ridiculous!!!

    October 11, 2013 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
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