Politics

September 28, 2013

With four days until shutdown, House Republicans on clock

They must decide if they will insist on defunding Obamacare, even if it means shutting down the government and America defaulting on its payments.

BY PAUL KANE, ED O'KEEFE AND LORI MONTGOMERY The Washington Post

(Continued from page 1)

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Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, walks to the floor of the House as Congress continues to struggle over how to fund the government and prevent a possible shutdown, at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013.

AP Photo / J. Scott Applewhite

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President Barack Obama leaves the podium after making a statement regarding the budget fight in Congress and foreign policy challenges on Friday at the White House in Washington.

The Associated Press

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"I don't know how I can be more clear about this: Nobody gets to threaten the full faith and credit of the United States just to extract political concessions," Obama said Friday.

Meanwhile, House leaders delayed consideration of their initial proposal to raise the federal debt limit until at least next week.

After a few noncontroversial votes naming federal buildings, the House adjourned Friday morning amid deep uncertainty about its next steps. Boehner and Cantor called a noon Saturday caucus meeting in the Capitol basement to forge ahead.

For the moment, GOP leaders have given no indication they were willing to simply approve the Senate legislation. Such a move, some Republicans privately fear, could lead to a collapse of support among GOP lawmakers and result in the legislation passing largely on the strength of Democratic votes. That would leave Boehner, already the weakest speaker of the modern political era, even more politically wounded heading into the debt ceiling talks.

Several Republicans said Friday that they favor a "stick" approach -- an amendment so distasteful to Democrats that they might feel compelled to return to the negotiating table. Others favor a "carrot" approach, attaching an item Democrats would find hard to refuse -- including possibly delaying sequestration cuts for a year in exchange for delaying implementation of the Affordable Care Act for a year. They did not detail the specifics of either approach.

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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California gestures while speaking during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington on Friday as Congress continues to struggle over how to fund the government and prevent a possible shutdown.

The Associated Press

  


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