Verge of a Shutdown
A resolution to continue funding the federal government is being batted between the two houses of Congress but little progress towards averting a government shutdown is being made. Even though the government is just hours away from running out of funds, however, House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) stated with certainty the government "is not going to shut down." The congressman, who is in charge of counting Republican votes in the House, added that, should the Senate reject the House-amended CR, he believes the House will have enough time to look at the issue again and present the Senate with "other options." Asked whether the House will consider a short term CR to give the Hill more time to hammer out an agreement, McCarthy said "if we have to negotiate a little longer, we will." Two members of the Senate, Senator Mike Lee (R-UT), one of those leading the charge to force at least delaying funding for the health care act, and Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA), a supporter of the Affordable Health Care Act, gave their take on the ensuing debate. Kaine said that he is open to ideas that reform the law, but does not believe it should be tied to threat of a government shutdown. "Republicans are doing everything they can to protect Americans from a shutdown, and the harmful effects of Obamacare," Lee said.