With a federal shutdown looming, the White House on Monday continued to pressure House Republicans and flatly stated that any government closure will be the fault of the GOP’s tea party “faction.”
“As of now it is up to the House of Representatives to decide whether or not they shut down the government in order to make an ideological point,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters. “We are at a moment where the House of Representatives has to decide — and the speaker of the House is the leader of the House and House Republicans — whether roughly 60 members of his caucus, the tea party faction, will dictate to the American people whether the government will shut down.”
On Capitol Hill, the Senate on Monday afternoon killed two House stopgap spending measures, one of which would have delayed Obamacare for one year and another that would have repealed of the law’s tax hikes.
The ball is now back in the House’s court; the current fiscal year expires at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday.
Mr. Carney stressed that the president is ready and willing to negotiate over long-term budget priorities, but said the GOP is erring by simply re-litigating the health care reform law, President Obama’s signature domestic achievement.
Republicans are “attaching things to Congress’ essential responsibility that tea party Republicans can’t get otherwise and that the American people rejected in an election,” Mr. Carney said.