Obama Government Shutdown. Obama warns of government shutdown and that the economic recovery will stall. The statement comes after Congress is trying to agree on spending cuts to avoid the unthinkable.
The current budget expires next Friday. That means lawmakers must OK a new spending plan before the March 4 deadline to keep much of the government from running out of money and closing. The Republican-run House and Democratic-controlled Senate are bickering over how much to cut.
“For the sake of our people and our economy, we cannot allow gridlock to prevail,” Obama said Saturday in his weekly radio and Internet address. “I urge and expect them to find common ground so we can accelerate, not impede, economic growth.”
House Republicans have proposed $4 billion in cuts as part of legislation to keep the government functioning through March 18, and they have urged Senate Democrats to accept that approach to avoid closing it down.
Democrats want a short-term extension at current spending levels so the parties can negotiate over how deeply to cut expenditures and begin chipping away at the deficit and the trillions of dollars in accumulated debt.
But House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, insists that a short-term bill without spending cuts is unacceptable.
Democrats have also rejected as draconian a bill the House passed last week to fund government operations through Sept. 30, the end of the budget year, while slashing spending by $61 billion. Obama has threatened to veto that bill.
Both sides have sought to blame the other pre-emptively as the first government shutdown since 1996 looms.
Add our Facebook page to receive updates and participate in new tools and features. It's a great way to stay connected with all the latest news.
Receive daily bite-sized updates by following us on Twitter. Receive Tweet-sized 140-character updates on your mobile phone device or PC.
Subscribe to our daily RSS feed to get the latest national news stories. We offer a feed for every topic including business, entertainment, health, politics, science & technology, travel and more.