Government shutdown nears as Congress continues negotiations

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The White House blamed House Republicans’ “chaos, and their chaos alone” for pushing the country to the brink of a government shutdown on Friday — hours before government funding was set to run out.  

“It’s been just four months since President Biden, House Republicans, House Democrats, Senate Republicans and Senate Democrats all made a bipartisan budget deal,” Director of the Office of Management and Budget Shalanda Young told reporters at a press briefing Friday. “You all were there. I was there. You remember what it took to get to that deal? We shook hands.” 

Young said the agreement – which at the time raised the debt ceiling – was signed into law and was a commitment to reduce the deficit, protect critical programs and ensure the government would remain open.

“Four of those five sides I just listed are sticking by that deal,” she said. “The one side — House Republicans — are refusing to live up to their end of the bargain.” 

Republicans have “turned they back on the deal” and are now “on an island entirely by themselves and entirely of their own making,” she said. 

“Their chaos in their chaos alone is now threatening to push us into a shutdown,” she said. “This is not only a violation of the deal. The President signed this deal into law.” 

Asked if Biden regretted making the deal with Republicans, Young first said she didn’t want to “go there,” but then added the deal wasn’t necessarily about trust. 

“It’s not a trust exercise, right?,” she said. “We passed a law.”

“I didn’t fall backwards in the woods,” she said with a smile. “70% of House Republicans voted for a bill. So, it’s beyond trust. We have a law. What else are we supposed to do?”

What GOP leadership is saying: House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has vowed not to “surrender” and negotiate with the Senate on a short-term spending bill in the face of the shutdown.

He has defended the inclusion of border security provisions in the House’s spending bill, saying he is striving to “fight for the American public, to secure our borders and keep government open.”

Several top Republicans made clear Friday that they don’t know what the next step is if the House’s stopgap bill to extend government funding fails.

McCarthy refused to answer multiple questions about if he believes he has the votes to pass a short-term measure this afternoon.


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