Democratic Whip on Hill: 'We're Doing Stupid Things'

Steny Hoyer sums things up on Capitol Hill
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 5, 2013 3:19 PM CST
House Minority Whip Rep. Steny Hoyer of Md. gestures during a news conference, Dec. 27, 2012.   (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

(Newser) – Democratic leaders say they won't try to block a GOP spending bill to fund the government, despite taking issue with its contents. "We're not whipping at this time," Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer told reporters, according to the Hill and Politico. The reason? Because Democrats don't want a government shutdown. "A shutdown is stupid policy," Hoyer said. "But the sequester is stupid policy. We’re doing stupid things here."

Republicans yesterday unveiled a plan to avoid a shutdown, with a bill that would undo some of the sequester cuts for the Defense Department and Veterans' Affairs, Reuters reports. Democrats say the bill doesn't do enough to protect domestic programs, but it looks like it will pass even without their help. In the Senate, meanwhile, Democrats are preparing to present their first budget in years, Roll Call reports. Patty Murray will unveil and mark up the bill next week. (Read more Steny Hoyer stories.)

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