Tensions Between House, Senate Grow as Budget Deadline Approaches
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Tensions between the US House of Representatives and the Senate are growing over a possible government shutdown. Some senators are accusing the House of not working in a bipartisan way to finalize a budget, which threatens a shutdown.
Congress has until September 30th to figure out a budget or else there will be a shutdown. The House is returning to DC next week, leaving little time for them to finalize these important funding bills.
The two chambers are trying to balance out some differences between spending levels and policy issues within these budget bills. Senate democrats are even praising their Senate republican colleagues for working together on this in a bipartisan manner and add that they are following the budget outline that the Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (R- CA) and President Biden agreed to on the debt ceiling. But some House hard right republicans want to go further and spend less on non-defense spending than what was agreed to. This is causing some concern that the House will be unable to move forward with these bills unless those demands are met.
For the most part, the Senate seems united that they don’t want a shutdown and are encouraging the House to work together better to avoid a shutdown.
"This month of course Congress needs to address our nation's most pressing needs with timely appropriations and we need to keep the lights on come October 1st," said Sen. Mitch McConnell (R- KY).
“McCarthy does have a challenge if the far right is unwilling to vote for the budget and will default on that budget if they don’t get what they want,” said Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D- NY). “That’s a problem so I think McCarthy should start to talk to democrats and find a coalition of people who will make sure the government won’t shut down.”
On top of all of this, Speaker McCarthy has a separate battle within his own party in the House if he doesn’t lower spending levels from that debt ceiling agreement. Some members have threatened to try to oust him from his speakership if he doesn’t meet those far-right republican demands.
According to reports, a government shutdown doesn’t necessarily have widespread impacts on the economy unless a shutdown drags on for weeks.