Shutdown Standoff: Day 3

  • ABC's MARY BRUCE and ANN COMPTON: President Obama today blasted House Republicans with renewed intensity and said the only thing standing in the way of reopening the government is Speaker John Boehner.

    “I want everybody to understand this: There are [enough] Republicans and Democrats in the House of Representatives today, that if the speaker of the House, John Boehner, simply let the bill get on the floor for an up-or-down vote, every congressman could vote their conscience, the shutdown would end today,” the president told workers at M. Luis Construction in Rockville, Md.

    “The only thing that is keeping the government shut down, the only thing preventing people from going back to work and basic research starting back up and farmers and small business owners getting their loans, the only thing that's preventing all that from happening, right now, today, in the next five minutes is that Speaker John Boehner won't even let the bill get a yes-or-no vote because he doesn't want to anger the extremists in his party,” he said. “That's all. That's what this whole thing is about.”

    “My simple message today is: Call a vote. Call a vote!” he urged.


  • ABC’s TOM SHINE: Has big business lost its clout on Capitol Hill? The U.S. Chamber of Commerce spent $30 million to elect Republicans in 2012. Monday, the U.S. Chamber sent a letter signed by over 250 business groups to the House of Representatives urging them to pass the CR. “It is not in the best interests of the U.S. business community or the American people to risk even a brief government shutdown that might trigger disruptive consequences or raise new policy uncertainties washing over the U.S. economy.” Today begins day three of the government shutdown.
  • ABC’s ARLETTE SAENZ: Each morning, Senate Chaplain Barry Black opens the session with a prayer to guide senators throughout their day. But from the onset of the government shutdown, Black has turned his prayers into punditry, urging Congress to find a way to reopen the government. “Have mercy upon us, oh God, and save us from the madness,” Black prayed Thursday morning. “We acknowledge our transgressions, our shortcomings, our smugness, our selfishness, and our pride. Create in us clean hearts, oh God, and renew a right spirit within us.”

    “Deliver us from the hypocrisy of attempting to sound reasonable while being unreasonable,” he continued. “Remove the burdens of those who are the collateral damage of this government shutdown, transforming negatives into positives as you work for the good of those who love you.”
  • BOBBY JINDAL WON’T ‘SECOND GUESS’ GOP OBAMACARE STRATEGY

    by Michael Falcone

    Now that a government shutdown has become a reality, Republican Governors Association Chairman Bobby Jindal, who once wholeheartedly endorsed the Republican tactic to tie government funding to a proposal to defund President Obama’s health care law, is now striking a different tone.
    Jindal won’t “second guess” congressional Republican strategies in Washington, the Louisiana governor told ABC News today. Instead, he stressed that the states, not Washington, are the “one place in America where you can actually see conservative principles being applied and you can actually see them working.

    That’s a sharp contrast to his posture weeks ago, before the shutdown went into effect, when Jindal offered a full-throated endorsement of the strategy of tying a proposal to repeal or defund the health care law to government funding. “Repeal and defund is certainly a fight worth having,” Jindal said. “I don’t know why as a party we would ever try to negotiate with ourselves for taking the option off the table,” Jindal added. “It’s certainly presumptuous for us to think that the president will choose to shut down the government over this.

    More from ABC’s ABBY PHILLIP: abcn.ws 
  • ABC's ARLETTE SAENZ: At his press conference this afternoon, Harry Reid said that he expects the Senate to be working this weekend. No details on what they’ll be doing.
  • HOT MIC MOMENT: RAND PAUL AND MITCH MCCONNELL TALK SHUTDOWN

    Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., were caught talking about GOP shutdown talking points on a hot mic this week.

    ABC’s RICK KLEIN: This is a great and illuminating piece of video on several levels. First, it’s a glimpse of how talking points are made, shared, and circulated. There’s nothing off-message here, but that’s the point: This battle has become one of talking points, waged on cable news, trying to sway the public since nobody’s being swayed inside the halls of Congress. Second, given the personal dynamics, watching Kentucky’s two Republican senators strategize together on talking points is an encouraging sign for Republican unity. Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul have a better relationship than they have in the past, but they’re not always going to be pulling in the same direction on fights like this.

    Rand Paul, Mitch McConnell caught on hot mic talking shutdown strategy
    by Omarosa Morgan via YouTube on 1:14 AM

  • RAND PAUL HOSTS ‘BIPARTISAN’ COFFEE CHAT – ONLY ONE DEMOCRAT ATTENDS

    ABC’s ARLETTE SAENZ: In the spirit of bipartisanship, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky. extended an invitation to colleagues from both sides of the aisle to join him for coffee on the Capitol steps Thursday morning. But with Congress divided as ever over the current government shutdown, only one Democratic senator attended -- Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del.


    “Let’s 
    sing kumbaya,” Carper said as he approached the group. Clutching cups of coffee, the conversation ranged from Obamacare and the government shutdown to football games and congressmen’s favorite baseball cards.

    Carper 
    and Paul were joined by a small group of their colleagues - Sens. John Barrasso, R-Wy., Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., and Reps. Brett Guthrie, R-Ky., Thomas Massie, R-Ky., and Mick Mulvaney, R-S.C.  Paul said Democrats were reluctant to meet in public because they worried it sent a signal that they were negotiating.

    “I talked 
    to several of them and they said they would meet privately but they didn’t want to meet in public to show they’re negotiating,” Paul explained to the group.

    by Michael Falcone


  • ABC’s ANNETA KONSTANTINIDES: On day three of the shutdown, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Tex., received a surprise care package from former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who has been tweeting her support for Cruz and the Tea Party.


  • WHO'S TO BLAME FOR THE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN CLOSING NATIONAL PARKS? 

    One GOP Congressman Says it’s the National Park Service's fault.

    A Republicans Congressman confronted a park ranger at the World War II memorial on Wednesday, appearing to blame her for preventing veterans from getting access to the memorial which has been closed because of the government shutdown.

    “How do you look at them and say.. how can you deny them access?” Rep. Randy Neugebauer of Texas asked. “I don’t get that.

    “It is difficult, I’m sorry sir,” replied the ranger.

    GOP Rep Confronts Park Service Ranger at WWII Memorial You Ought to Be 'Ashamed'
    by BestNews07 via YouTube on 12:12 PM

    The exchange was caught on camera by a local NBC affiliate.

    “The Park Service should be ashamed of themselves,” Neugebauer continued.

    The Texas lawmaker has voted with most House Republicans to tie government funding to a proposal that would alter, defund or delay President Obama’s health care law. 

    As the Neugebauer  walked away, he was confronted by a furloughed government worker who told the Congressman that he is out of work "because the government won’t do its job." 
  • PETER KING: I ‘HONESTLY DON’T KNOW’ WHAT GOP WANTS FROM SHUTDOWN

    ABC’s ANNETA KONSTANTINIDES: In an interview with ABC’s Dan Kloeffler, Rep. Peter King, R-NY., said “I honestly don’t know’ what the GOP wants from the shutdown.



    King’s acknowledgement came after Kloeffler played a clip of President Obama quoting Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Ind., while stumping at a Maryland construction company today: “We are not going to be disrespected, we have to get something out of this, and I don’t know what that even is.”

    King reiterated his support for passing a clean continuing resolution and said he “would vote for it in a heartbeat.” Citing the challenges facing House Speaker John Boehner, King said he believes the House needs to take “tough action.”

    “I just don’t think the Cruz Republicans are going to allow him to do what he wants to do until too much time has gone by,” King said of Boehner. “I think we have to force the action here and by doing that I think we strengthen John Boehner’s hand against the Cruz Republicans.”

    Though King said all Republicans “believe it’s absolutely wrong what’s happening” with the government shutdown, he believes some are fighting their battle against Obamacare at the wrong time. “That’s how we fight our battles in this country, we do it politically at the ballot box.”
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