Government Shutdown FY2014: Day 11 – No Deal, but Softer Rhetoric

Government Shutdown FY2014: Day 11 – No Deal, but Softer Rhetoric

As the partial government shutdown ends its eleventh day, there still is no deal to either reopen the government or raise the debt limit.   All sides, however, are using their public words to convey that they are working together to find a solution, even if currently there are several conflicting proposals out there.

President Obama met with Senate Republicans today, completing a set of meetings over the past three days with, separately, House Democrats, House Republicans (though only a small hand-picked group participated), Senate Democrats and Senate Republicans.  

Yesterday, House Republicans proposed raising the debt limit for 6 weeks (until November 22) with no deal on reopening government.   Today, they revised their proposal to add a two-track approach to dealing with the other issues:  parallel negotiations where one track would focus on FY2014 spending and the other on broader budget issues including entitlement reform, tax reform, and spending cuts.   President Obama reportedly spoke with House Speaker Boehner late this afternoon and indicated that he would not agree to the revised proposal because he also wants revenue increases to be part of the discussions.

Meanwhile, Senate Democrats reject the idea of a 6-week debt limit increase because they do not want to end up having this same debate next month.  They are working on a proposal that may be voted on tomorrow to raise the debt limit by $1 trillion through December 2014, past next year’s congressional elections.  It also would not reopen government.  Senate Republicans, led by Senator Susan Collins (R-ME), are crafting a proposal to reopen the government for 6 or 12 months, raise the debt ceiling, and repeal or delay a tax of medical devices that is part of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare).  The medical device tax is widely unpopular in both parties and the President reportedly agreed today that it is not a core element of that law.

All parties plan to work through the weekend.

The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee held a hearing today on the economic impact of the shutdown.   Marion Blakey, President of the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA), and Alan Leshner, Chief Executive Officer of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), were two of the witnesses.   Not surprisingly, they tesified that the shutdown is having widespread, negative impacts on aerospace and scientific research. has published a summary of the hearing.

Note:  This article was updated on October 12, 2013 adding a link to’s summary of the October 11 hearing.

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