Lawmakers Busy Sniping as Budget Talks Stall

Obama calls White House meeting as deadline looms
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 4, 2011 6:03 PM CDT
In this June 16, 2010 file photo, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is flanked by House Minority Leader John Boehner, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

(Newser) – The federal government is careening rapidly toward a shutdown, so Democrats and Republicans alike are scrambling to ... lob political grenades at each other. Still. A roundup of the latest:

  • President Obama today invited John Boehner, Harry Reid, and other top lawmakers to the White House tomorrow morning to "urge leaders to reach final agreement,” reports the Washington Post.

  • Boehner is lukewarm about Obama's invite, reports Politico, saying in a vague statement that "we’re working with the White House to schedule that meeting.”
  • Boehner had more explicit words for Harry Reid, notes Politico: “It’s become sadly evident to me, and to the American people, that the White House and Senate Democrats are just not serious yet about enacting real spending cuts. If the government shuts down, it will be because Senate Democrats failed to do their job.”
  • Reid fired right back, saying Republicans and Tea Partiers are eschewing "reality" for "ideology." Says a Senate aide, “These guys are so busy trying to get 218 Republican votes in the House. They forget they should be getting 170 and 50 Democrats so it can pass over here.”
  • The Post notes that new GOP House rules mean that an agreement must be posted online tomorrow night in order to schedule a vote Friday night and avoid a shutdown.
Stay tuned.

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