NPR : News

Filed Under:

Is Another Shutdown Showdown Looming In Washington?

Less than two months after nearly shutting down the federal government as they argued over the best way to reduce the budget deficit, there's word that Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill are again at odds and that another shutdown showdown is possible.

Politico reports that:

-- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) says he wants to "attach $6.9 billion for the Federal Emergency Management Agency to a stopgap funding bill that must pass in order to keep the federal government running after Sept. 30."

-- And Reid's announcement has been "blasted" by top House Republicans, "who favor a lower, $3.65 billion level for disaster aid."

Republican leaders, says The Washington Post, maintain "that disaster-relief monies included in [the] government funding bill must be offset by additional cuts elsewhere in the budget" and say their plan does that.

And according to The Hill, while Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said he thinks a deal can be worked out by this Thursday, Reid said "I'm not that sure" there won't be a shutdown.

"We're not going to cave on this," Reid added, according to The Hill.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) says Reid is to blame for this latest tempest. "He's the one playing politics," Cantor said today.

Reid cited the "bipartisan" support for the larger figure in the Senate and said it was a sign that Republicans and Democrats in that chamber "agreed that helping communities destroyed by natural disasters was too important to let politics get in the way."

Complicating things further: While the federal fiscal year doesn't end until Sept. 30 (a week from Friday), "both the House and Senate are scheduled to be out next week for Rosh Hashanah, which means they need to wrap up work by the end of this week," Politico says.

FEMA's budget has been stretched thin this year by multiple natural catastrophes — from tornadoes in the spring to hurricanes and wildfires this summer.

Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Book Review: 'In Praise Of Hatred'

Alan Cheuse reviews the novel In Praise of Hatred, by Khaled Khalifa. The book, which was recently translated to English, features a young Muslim girl in 1980s Syria.
NPR

Fast-Food CEOs Earn Supersize Salaries; Workers Earn Small Potatoes

A new report finds that the average compensation of fast-food CEOs has quadrupled since 2000. By comparison, worker wages have increased less than 1 percent.
NPR

Green GOP Group Caught Between 'Rock And A Hard Place'

On Earth Day 2014, it wasn't easy being an environmental organization in the Republican Party. The big donors who write checks aren't much interested in the environment.
NPR

Online Sales Taxes Shift Consumer Behavior, Study Shows

Some states have enacted so-called Amazon taxes, forcing the giant online retailer to collect sales taxes the same way traditional stores do. In those states, Amazon's sales fell about 10 percent.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.