Media Soundbites on the Government Showdown and Shutdown



Obama puppet, Harry Reid

When Harry Reid gets in today – at 2PM – he will strip the bill of the Obamacare provisions and send it back to the House with little time to avoid a shutdown this evening.

Republicans are asking for a delay of one-year of Obamacare. Reid’s Senate refuses to vote on the measure and they will not negotiate on any Obamacare provision, even the Medical Device Tax.  Republicans will get the largest share of the blame even though the Senate is refusing to negotiate.

Any criticism of Congress falls on Republicans largely because they have control of the House – the peoples’ House.



CBS News

Why is this happening – again?

The bill to fund the government this time around has stalled largely because conservatives have tried to seize the legislation as an opportunity to defund or delay the Affordable Care Act from the get-go, though it was an ultimately futile attempt: The driving parts of Obamacare will effectively remain intact unless the entire law is repealed.


NBC News

As both parties brace for likely public wrath if and when a shutdown occurs, Republicans are eager to frame the budget standoff as the product of Democrats’ insistence on preserving the Obamacare law, which they insist isn’t ready for implementation. Democrats say that the GOP is out of line by tying a proposed Obamacare delay to an unrelated funding bill.


ABC News

House Republicans have passed a bill to keep the government open, but only if the new provisions of the health care law are delayed by one year. They also want to repeal a tax the law imposes on some medical devices.

Senate Democrats and President Obama say any funding bill that includes changes to Obamacare is dead on arrival. The Senate has passed its own measure to keep the government’s lights on and the health care law on track.

Neither side appears willing to compromise to reach middle ground.

“The president is the one saying, ‘I will shut down the government if you don’t give me everything I want on Obamacare,” Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., said Sunday on “Face the Nation.”

Democrats argue that Republican tactics amount to extortion.

“It is wrong to do a shutdown of government as the leverage to make change,” Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., told “Fox News Sunday.”


Reid’s strategy boils down to a few factors: If Democrats give even a few small concessions on a short-term stopgap funding measure, Republicans will demand even bigger concessions to avoid a debt default in mid-October. Since Republicans have been engulfed in an intraparty war over how far to take a shutdown threat, Reid and his top lieutenants are convinced that the political backlash from a shutdown would be devastating to the GOP, potentially costing them their majority in the House.


Despite his backroom pleas and carefully crafted strategies, Boehner — a veteran of the shutdown battles of the mid-1990s — was unable to convince a hard-line faction of House GOP lawmakers that they should save their legislative brawls for the debt ceiling fight, where Boehner thought he could drag President Barack Obama to the negotiating table.


Fox News

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., had made his feelings on the bill, which includes an amendment providing for a one-year delay in the implementation of ObamaCare, known even before the House approved the measure early Sunday morning. Throughout the day Sunday, House Republican leaders chided Reid and others in the Democrat-led chamber for not hustling back to Capitol Hill to negotiate a compromise.

“O Senate, where art thou,” said Tennessee Rep. Marsha Blackburn, riffing on the movie “O Brother, Where Art Thou.”


New York Times

WASHINGTON — The Senate is expected to reject decisively a House bill that would delay the full effect of President Obama’s health care law as a condition for keeping the government running past Monday, as Senator Harry Reid, the Democratic majority leader, expressed confidence that he had public opinion on his side.

Harry Reid kept the Senate closed on Sunday.

Angering Republicans who lead the House, Mr. Reid kept the Senate shuttered on Sunday, in a calculated move to stall action on the House measure until Monday afternoon, just hours before the government’s spending authority runs out at midnight.

Without a complete capitulation by House Republicans, large sections of the government would close, hundreds of thousands of workers would be furloughed without pay, and millions more would be asked to work for no pay.

USA Today

WASHINGTON — Congressional Republicans showed no signs Sunday of relenting on their efforts to dismantle President Obama’s health care law on a stopgap funding bill, setting the course for the first government shutdown in 17 years starting Tuesday.

“The American people overwhelmingly reject Obamacare. They understand it’s not working. The only people who aren’t listening to the argument are the career politicians in Washington,” said Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, on NBC’s Meet the Press.


Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said the House’s action was “pointless” and White House spokesman Jay Carney said it was “reckless and irresponsible” because Obama has already said he will veto any attempt to delay or defund the law in the unlikely event it reaches his desk.


The Hill

Republicans will bear most of the blame for a government shutdown, according to CNN-ORC poll released Monday morning.

The survey found that 46 percent of respondents would blame Republicans for a shutdown, against 36 percent who said President Obama would be to blame. Still, that’s a closer divide than the same poll found earlier in the month, when 51 percent blamed Republicans and 33 percent blamed Obama.



The Two-Way, It’s All Politics and other NPR outlets have been reporting for weeks, the Republican-led House is insisting that legislation to fund government operations include provisions to either defund (the GOP’s first suggestion) or delay (its latest) the rest ofPresident Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

The Democratic-led Senate is equally insistent and has already rejected the GOP’s first suggestion. It’s poised to later today reject the second. The White House has also said President Obama would veto any legislation that includes language scuttling Obamacare.

This is all happening with an important deadline looming.