Washington (CNN) – The Republican congressman and Democratic senator charged with hashing out a federal budget deal are "closer" to an agreement but not there yet, according to senior aides in both parties.
A senior Democratic aide tells CNN that House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan and Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray met Wednesday afternoon and are narrowing down the issues in a potential spending deal.
The two lawmakers are the primary negotiators for and leaders of a budget conference committee that has a week and a half to come up with an agreement on spending levels. The talks are especially important because the bill funding government now runs out in mid-January at nearly the same time as another round of forced budget cuts is due to hit.
If Murray and Ryan can agree on spending levels and whether to roll back some of the budget cuts, that would settle the most contentious issues in the January spending debate and essentially pave a shutdown-free road to the next funding bill.
The two sides have a nearly $100 billion gap to bridge. Entering the talks, Republicans had pushed for an annual spending level of $967 billion, while Democrats set their level at $1.058 billion.
The Budget is very important. I hope they get it done
They will get it done, but Tea Partiers will shot it down! I'll lay odds on it!
I would hope that Ryan would come closer Murray because he cuts to much of the social welfare programs. Those that need help often only get it from organizations that get federal funds.
Hope they leave the poor peopld alone they have done too much allready
Good Luck !
my interest in budgets has always been on the impacts/ quality/ objectives rather than the figures. I hope Mr. President has not compromised his target issues for political reasons........ By the way why are budgets subjected to political 'poisoning' instead of placing them under economists and financiers domain.
Its too bad...Patty Murray is a Senator from our state. I have clients that worked with her on the PTA in North Seattle area. Opinion: Not too bright. Just being the messenger. FWIW