Taughannock Falls

Taughannock Falls
from: althouse.blogspot.com

Friday, April 8, 2011

Shutdown averted by giving in to GOP demands

So here's the deal:

A U.S. government shutdown 2011 was averted at the last minute Friday night after the House and Senate reached a temporary spending agreement.

The measure, which will keep the government running until Thursday, postponed an impending furlough of some 800,000 federal workers.

Friday's "bridge" agreement calls for $39 billion in short-term spending cuts, and pushes off the contentious issue of abortion funding, which Republicans sought to block.

By Thursday, the House and Senate will schedule votes on a longer-term budget that will carry the government through Sept. 30, the end of the current fiscal year.

The news was greeted with a mixture of relief over a crisis averted, and frustration over continued wrangling that will spill into next week. And harsh rhetoric left its mark.

Throughout the afternoon leading up to the midnight deadline, Democrats said abortion funding was a crucial sticking point, as Republicans held fast to their demand to cut off Title 10 "women's health" programs. Roughly 25 percent of Title 10 funds go to Planned Parenthood, the nation's leading abortion provider.

One-third of Planned Parenthood's annual $1.1 billion budget comes from the taxpayers, and Democrats were equally determined to keep the money flowing. Both sides reportedly agreed to vote on the issue separately next week.

Earlier in the day, Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., called the GOP position "extremist ideology" and accused Republicans of "pouting in the corner."

Rep. Louise Slaughter, D-N.Y., was even more vitriolic.

Speaking at an abortion rally Thursday in Washington, D.C., Slaughter said, “This is probably one of the worst times we’ve seen. ... In ’94, people were elected simply to come here to kill the National Endowment for the Arts. Now they’re here to kill women.”

So President Obama and Harry Reid have now agreed to $39 billion in spending cuts, from a budget that already proposed to cut off heating assistance to the poor and elderly. The Democrats have now told America that we can afford to give massive tax breaks to corporations and the wealthy while spending money like water in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya. But we'll need to shred essential services that millions of Americans rely on. So the American people will endure extreme hardships to support giving away billions to people who already have more money than they could possibly spend. Not to worry, however, because the GOP has made big sacrifices as well. They have agreed to maintain funding for Planned Parenthood for a couple of weeks more. That's swell, but not so impressive. given the fact they promise to continue pressing hard to defund Planned parenthood going forward. If this is "compromise," I'd really hate to see


Motivated In Ohio said...

I started the morning with a search to see if the Government was still open, sad.

Ulysses said...

This whole situation is very sad, indeed. Completely forgotten in all this is the need to create jobs for millions of Americans without work.

Cletis L. Stump said...

Ulysses, I have been promoting your marvelous post regarding John Conger's bill and everyone loves his idea. I have not heard a word about it since your post. Why doesn't the President address that very bill in a press conference? I have been at it with a fellow progressive who is upset with my failure to get behind the President. You know, Ulysses, it's tough to get behind someone who is cowering in the corner. If I had it to do again I would have supported Hillary. Never dreamed I would be compelled to say that.

Ulysses said...

I am convinced that President Obama suffers from "Stockholm Syndrome," in his gilded cage inside the beltway. He desperately wants to "transcend" partisan politics, and the D.C. press and establishment tell him that's what he's doing, as he surrenders to the GOP hostage-takers.