Federal update for Thursday April 7, 2011

Yesterday afternoon, House Republicans announced they are marking up a Republican bill to keep the government open another week, exacting $12 billion in spending cuts and funding the Defense Department until the end of September. The bill is expected to be on the House floor for a vote Thursday.  The administration and Democrats on Capitol Hill had initially pegged cuts for the remainder of this fiscal year at $33 billion, but Boehner and House Republicans appear to be pushing for deeper cuts.

Last night, the President held a meeting with Boehner and Reid at the White House to discuss budget negotiations.  A deal wasn’t struck, however a joint press appearance after the White House meeting between Reid and Boehner spoke volumes to the efforts both leaders are now making to reach an agreement.  During Boehner’s statement, he said there was no agreement on either the amount of spending or the inclusion of policy riders (federal support for Planned Parenthood or defunding of the EPA).  Speaking to the divide within the Republican Conference, conservatives have begun to come on board with the Republican’s short term proposal, citing the importance of continuing to fund the military.

Boehner and Reid will meet again this morning in an attempt to come to terms on a budget deal.  The President has also said he will summon the two leaders again to the White House this evening if necessary.


President Obama, House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid didn’t reach a deal on the budget after a Thursday afternoon meeting. Outside the White House, Reid told reporters that they would reconvene at 7 p.m.

Boehner chose to proceed with House passage of a stop-gap “troop funding” bill which the president has already promised to veto.  Adopted 247-181, the measure would put the Defense Department on permanent footing through the end of this fiscal year but demand $12 billion more in immediate cuts to keep the rest of the government open through next week.