News / USA

House GOP Holds Firm as Shutdown Looms

President Barack Obama gestures while making a statement regarding the budget fight in Congress and foreign policy challenges, Sept. 27, 2013, at the White House in Washington. President Barack Obama gestures while making a statement regarding the budget fight in Congress and foreign policy challenges, Sept. 27, 2013, at the White House in Washington.
x
President Barack Obama gestures while making a statement regarding the budget fight in Congress and foreign policy challenges, Sept. 27, 2013, at the White House in Washington.
President Barack Obama gestures while making a statement regarding the budget fight in Congress and foreign policy challenges, Sept. 27, 2013, at the White House in Washington.
Cindy Saine
The U.S. Congress is mired in a bitter political showdown that now appears likely to shut down major parts of the U.S. government Tuesday for the first time in 17 years.  In the latest move, House Republicans passed another measure to derail U.S. President Barack Obama's health-care program.  But the president and his Democratic Party allies in the Senate have made clear the measure is going nowhere. 

In a high drama Saturday session, the Republican-controlled House passed a measure late in the evening that would fund the government until December 15th.  But it also passed two amendments, one that would delay implementation of the heath care program for one year, which Democrats say is an absolute deal breaker.
 
House Republicans emerged from closed door meetings appearing energized, saying they are united in blocking the health care law because they believe it is the right thing to do.
 
Republican Congressman Pete Sessions urged support for the delay: "The House amendments would make important steps to ensure that Obamacare, the Affordable Care Act that President Obama and every Democrat voted for, does not have the opportunity to hurt American jobs and drag down our economy."
 
But Democratic Representative David Scott, an African American, accused some Republicans of doing everything they can to undermine President Obama, saying they can't separate Mr. Obama from Obamacare.

Scott told House Republicans "your hate for this president is coming before the love of this country, because if you loved this country, you would not be closing it down."

The Senate had passed a budget bill Friday that removed a House measure to defund the health care law, sending a clean funding bill back to the House for a vote.  On Saturday, Senate Majority leader Harry Reid issued a statement calling the renewed House effort to block health care "pointless", and he made clear that the Democratically-controlled Senate would  reject it.
 
The White House also reacted to the House measure, saying in a statement that "any member of the Republican Party who votes for this bill is voting for a shutdown."
 
Democratic Representative Debbie Wasserman Schulz made an appeal for Republicans to fight the health care battle elsewhere: "It doesn't have to be this way.  We do have the ability to stop the brinksmanship and come together, and separate two completely unrelated issues."
 
Democrats point out that the health care law has been in place for more than three years and that President Obama was re-elected last year, despite his rival's plan to overturn the health-care plan. Republicans argue that the health care law is a massive and costly federal intrusion into American's private lives.
 
As it stands now, the Senate is not set to be back in session until Monday afternoon, leaving only a few hours until the midnight deadline when government funding runs out.  There is no clear path to a way to end the standoff.
 
The House also passed a measure to make sure the military gets paid in the event of a shutdown.

If there is no budget deal by midnight Monday, most government agencies will shut down some, or all, of their activities. For instance, national parks will be closed and many administrative services, such as paying retirees, may be affected.  An estimated 800,000 federal employees will be furloughed.

For those duties that are considered essential, employees will be required to work, but will not be paid until a budget bill is passed. VOA will continue to broadcast. Overseas, many people may find visa applications are delayed.


 

You May Like

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Religion Aside, Christmas Gains Popularity in Communist Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: David from: Diana
September 30, 2013 10:57 PM
As I see it they have budget that defunds obamacare . So they have a budget that will not put this country (that I served proudly) deeper in debt. So why is it being blocked. Yes I don't want socialist medicare care.


by: Anonymous
September 29, 2013 7:58 PM
a typical biased VOA story. Why is it titled
"House GOP Holds Firm as Shutdown Looms"
instead of "Senate Democrats Holds Firm as Shutdown Looms" ?

The author and more generally, VOA, is trying to pin the government shut down on Republicans. It ain't workin' on me!


by: Chas Holman from: USA
September 29, 2013 1:18 AM
I’ve seen what this clownish act by the GOP has done to the WORLD stock market the last few weeks.. Give them another year and the uncertainty will have us all dead and buried.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid