Skip to comments.More Shutdown Drama as House Sends CR Back to Senate
Posted on 09/28/2013 9:31:29 PM PDT by smoothsailing
House Republicans voted early Sunday morning to prolong the showdown over a government shutdown, sending the Senate more provisions intended to undermine Obamacare as part of a stopgap spending bill to keep the government operating past Monday.
The high-stakes game of hot potato could end up bringing the government to a bureaucratic halt come Tuesday, given that Senate Democratic leaders have flatly refused to consider any measure that would weaken the president’s signature legislative achievement.
Shortly after midnight, the House voted to approve a series of amendments to the Senate-passed version of a continuing resolution. While the Senate had stripped out language intended to defund Obamacare, House Republicans decided Saturday to try again with a one-year delay of the health care law, which they approved 231-192. Two Democrats voted with all but two Republicans for the Obamacare delay.
The House also approved, 248-174 a repeal of a 2.3 percent tax on medical device makers that the Congressional Budget Office says would bring in $29 billion over a decade. Seventeen Democrats joined all Republicans on that vote. The chamber also voted to change the CR’s expiration date from Nov. 15 to Dec. 15.
House leaders made the bill even more unpalatable to Senate Democrats by including a “conscience clause” allowing employers and insurers to opt out of providing coverage for contraception if they have moral or religious objections.
The measures were technically amendments to the Senate amendment to the House-passed continuing resolution, meaning the Democratic Senate could vote down the legislation in a single vote with a simple majority and send the CR back to the House yet again.
House floor debate grew heated in the 10 p.m. hour of a very long Saturday on Capitol Hill.
Natural Resources Chairman Doc Hastings, R-Wash., frequently reminded members to address their remarks to him, the presiding officer, and not to each other as they exchanged barbs of blame for the looming shutdown yet members continued to make personal atttacks.
Democratic Rep. David Scott of Georgia shouted at Republicans and over Republicans, like John Culberson of Texas, who shouted back that they were consumed in partisanship.
“Your hate for this president is coming before the love of this country, Scott said, claiming that Republicans intended to shut down the government because you have been hijacked by a small group of extreme folks who simply hate this president.
Republican Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., did an impression of President Barack Obama, ridiculing the president for refusing to negotiate on the debt limit.
There will be no negotiations, Rohrabacher said, imitating Obamas deep baritone voice.
If this government shuts down, it’s because you haven’t accepted the compromise that Republicans have reached out to you and offered, said Rohrabacher.
But House Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer, D-Md., a vocal critic of funding the government at sequester levels, charged Republicans with not being satisfied by the White House’s concession that a CR would likely be held at $986 billion.
“The president said he’d sign your level,” Hoyer said. “Your level. You’ve won. But you can’t take ‘yes’ for an answer.”
The heated debate spiraled into burning rhetoric as each side tried to top the other.
For those tuning in to this debate, I want to make sure there’s no confusion: This is not Saturday Night Live, said Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman Steve Israel, D-N.Y.
As Congress runs up against a Sept. 30 deadline that now looks even more difficult to meet, many lawmakers predicted at least a short government shutdown starting Oct. 1.
House Republicans appear to be hoping that if a shutdown does occur, the Senate and its majority Democrats will get the blame.
But even before Republicans sent the CR back to the Senate, Reid called the vote pointless and said the American people will not be extorted by tea party anarchists. White House spokesman Jay Carney also weighed in on Saturday, saying, “Any member of the Republican Party who votes for this bill is voting for a shutdown.”
But potential Senate action or inaction didnt seem to faze House Republicans Saturday.
“We can’t control the Senate, said Rep. John Fleming, R-La. We can only control ourselves, and we’re gonna do what’s right and we’re gonna let the Senate take care of itself.”
“If the Senate hasn’t acted, then the Senate is to blame,” echoed House Appropriations Chairman Harold Rogers, R-Ky.
But while House Republicans try to blame Democrats, a recent poll suggests Americans would lay more blame at the feet of Republicans. However, Democrats would hardly be held harmless. If the government shuts down, 44 percent of Americans would blame Republicans, 35 percent would blame Democrats, and 16 percent would blame all parties equally, a CBS/New York Times poll found.
That sort of polling might have made Speaker John A. Boehners choice easier. Faced with accepting the Senates CR and then having a revolt from his own conference, or taking on Obamacare and shutting down the government, Boehner made his stand.
The battle is shaping up to be a precursor to a potentially more economically dangerous fight: the debt limit. President Barack Obama and Democrats insist they will not negotiate with Republicans over paying the nations debt; Republicans insist they will need to extract concessions in exchange for raising the ceiling.
House Republicans might not want to cave on the CR, for fear of appearing weak as they try to extract concessions on a wish list of GOP measures in exchange for raising the debt ceiling.
On the more immediate concern the CR some House Republicans were already indicating a willingness to pare back their demands if the Senate rejected their newest legislative ploy.
Republicans emerged from a closed-door meeting Saturday eager to vote on their latest legislative offering. But with more than 800,000 non-essential federal workers facing furloughs, and many more who would be working without a paycheck, the stakes continue to mount and both sides are adamant they do not want a shutdown.
The desire to keep the lights on, however, is running up against a desire to address Obamacare and an even more damning issue: time.
In the Senate where expediency is even rarer than bipartisanship Reid isnt expected to bring the chamber back until Monday, just 10 hours before a shutdown would take effect.
These GOP House members are still there after midnight.
Meanwhile Obama’s in bed snoozing after a challenging game of golf. It was low 70s and sunny today in DC
Similarly Reid gave the DEm Senate the weekend off and back to work 2 pm Tuesday.
You can see they are really upset and worried. Reid said no paying the troops without Obama-care no delays
This whole thing really needs to hinge on two things:
Overspending by the Government and Obamacare. This new entitlement will eventually bankrupt Government so they are connected to the same argument.
Both are destroying our freedoms and way of life. Both are destroying the economy. How hard is it for the folks to understand this and to do the right thing. Well, there is the leftist Media pushing for a Socialist agenda so there is push back where there should not be. So, I see the Media as the major problem here... Unfortunately I don’t see anybody perusing the truth about any of this, now or in the future (it’s called politics).
I love it ... FUBO !!!
I thought that the Senate was taking Sunday off. This ought to be interesting.
The House could always check if the Senate is on the golf course with Obama.
Negotiate with Iran, but not with Republicans.
I believe the Dems don’t want a slowdown because after a few months the people might wake up and realize they didn’t miss it. This is more fake end of world bs the Dems and msm will try to make stick to the Repubs. You chickens??t Repubs. Delay is just another Rino smokescreen to get the Dems pass the election.
Doncha just love Harry Reid’s words, extorted by tea party anarchists? He’d rather we be extorted by the Demonrat agenda - which we have been for the past 5 years.
Will the Shutdown be as horrific as the Sequester was?
Oh! the humanity. /snark
McCain is hiring hit-men as we speak. He is probably blowing his wife’s Coors revenue this year on “opposition research”.
Watch for the long-knives from the State Controlled Media (Pravda) and the GOPe against Cruz.
He’s rocked the boat.
I hope Cruz is a warrior of serious depth, because everything is on the line with his opposition. Watch for them to go the whole nine yards. Dem’s and GOPe are going to come gunning for this patriot.
Prayers up for Cruz.
“Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin to slit throats.”
H. L. Mencken
US editor (1880 - 1956)
How about the house approves it with the only amendment being there can Be NO waivers for anyone. Not the unions, not congress, no one. Let’s see if the Senate would pass that.
A shutdown is for days
Obamacare is for the rest of our lives
OMG!!! It can't possibly be that bad, can it? ;-)
Reid is suffering from a bad case of shortman disease and if he was 8 feet tall he would still be a small man. Don’t know if you have noticed but I really don’t care for the weasel. We Stole The Election Fair and Square Reid can kiss my KY a##. I withdraw that as the little man might enjoy it.
Oh my, Wishes for the year:
1. Shutdown Government for at least 30 days - I would not mind 90 days at all - or more...
2. Show the folks that the shutdown has nothing to do with them, just the Government folks and their pet projects (no effect for the majority of the public). Understand that the working Fed folks have to suffer but that is government reality, really, is it such a catastrophe that they get delayed checks. They are almost universally overpaid anyway (compared to normal folks).
3. Show the positive results of a shutdown! Can the Democrats actually agree to a common cause good for America instead of their own ideas.
4. Result: Wow, the world did not explode!. Time for Congress to take charge of their responsibility for the money and do right by the rest of the folks instead of themselves. Congress has the power of the purse, Use It!!
Unless a coup has taken place in the House that we're unaware of, then Boehner is still Majority Leader, and you constituents of his need to contact his office to congratulate him for finally finding some testicles. Encourage him to hold on tightly to those newly-found testicles! It's very refreshing (although I would have loved for him to tack on a House version of the Vitter Amendment too...).
The Rubicon has been crossed.