5 Shutdown Exit Strategies

GOP moderates having trouble coming to the rescue

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Oct 7, 2013 7:57 AM CDT

(Newser) – There's still no end in sight for the government shutdown. But if an end were in sight, what might it look like? CBS breaks down the possibilities:

  • Moderate Republicans to the Rescue? Rep. Peter King has been leading meetings of his moderate colleagues. King has been an outspoken critic of the shutdown. "This never had a chance to work," he said yesterday, according to the Hill, bashing the "suicide caucus" that caused it. But so far they haven't come up with any viable plan, member Jon Runyan tells Roll Call.
  • The Discharge Petition? Democrats have begun circling a petition which, if a majority of House members sign, would force a vote on a bill to reopen the government. But Runyan says that won't work, because the petition wouldn't kick in until after the Oct. 17 debt ceiling deadline. "It's going to get real [bleep] on the 17th," he adds.
  • A Grand Bargain? John Boehner has reportedly been pitching a packaged deal to the White House tying the continuing resolution and debt limit to sweeping fiscal reforms. "Everybody laughed at him because they've heard this song and dance so many times," one Democratic aide tells Politico.
  • Democrats Could Give Something Up? A handful of lawmakers from both sides of the aisle last week proposed repealing a small part of the Affordable Care Act—the 2.3% tax on medical device sales—in exchange for reopening the government. But Harry Reid called the play "an act of desperation" and vowed to stick to his guns.
  • Boehner Could Cave? But the speaker claims that, even if he allowed a vote on a clean bill, there wouldn't be enough votes to pass it.
If none of those sound likely to you, you're not alone. Despite frustration in the ranks, both sides' leaders are barely even talking. "There may be a back room somewhere," Boehner said yesterday. "But there's nobody in it."

In this Spet. 30, 2013, photo, Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., walks towards the House Chamber on Capitol Hil.
In this Spet. 30, 2013, photo, Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., walks towards the House Chamber on Capitol Hil.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
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