Washington (CNN) - Note to anyone watching the high-stakes, trillion-dollar budget talks in Washington: you can take a break from constantly checking for a deal. Senior Republican and Democratic aides tell CNN that the two leaders running negotiations have left Washington for the weekend and any agreement is not expected until next week.
House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan has returned to Wisconsin and Senate Budget Chairman Patty Murray is in Washington state, the aides confirm.
The sources insist that talks have continued to be positive, with one Democratic aide close to the negotiations telling CNN that both sides think the final items in question are "bridgeable".
Murray and Ryan lead a budget conference committee that has until Dec. 13 to set the spending level for the federal government. If they fail, it would set off another potential budget showdown. Current government funding runs out in January near the same time as billions in new budget cuts are set to hit.
S. B. Stein
Many people need the services because the wealthy won't fund the non-governmental social welfare organizations like food banks and medical clinics.
Food banks and medical clinics that would only be necessary for a fraction of Americans they're currently serving if the wealthy "job creators" actually created jobs that paid a living wage.
How about a Farm Bill, Mr. Speaker? Hmm? FARM BILL.
Mr. Reid, would you please pass a "clean" Farm Bill for Mr. Speaker?
We know that the Republicans have no intention of passing a Farm Bill, which wiould be potential economic disaster. The ripple efect would be devastating, beginning with the price of a gallon of milk doubling. Forget goveernment shutdown, the GOTP appears to be aiming for a "milk shutdown". Everyone knows that Republicans will simply go on vacation if a Farms Bill is not passed prior to end of their abbreviated work schedule. No staying aruond to finish the job for them. It's yabba-dabba-doo time for them.
And, of course, the GOTP will blame it all on the silly, reckless Democrats. I think the Senate should do what it did prior to the Oct. government shutdown, which was to pass a clean funding bill before the deadline, and send it to the House. And, I think that should the House decide to pack it up for Christmas with no Farms Bill, then the President should order them back into session with the curt instruction, "Do your jobs."
They better get on the ball. It's not like they've got a lot of working days in December. I personally think Congress shouldn't be allowed to go on break until a budget deal is made.