The White House issued a fiery statement Tuesday morning blaming congressional Republicans for ‘playing partisan games” as the U.S. government faces a shutdown this weekend.
‘With less than one week before the end of the fiscal year, extreme House Republicans are playing partisan games with peoples’ lives and marching our country toward a government shutdown that would have damaging impacts across the country—including undermining our national security and forcing servicemembers across the country and around the world to work without pay,’ the White House statement read.
It continued: ‘The reason these national security priorities are now at risk: extreme House Republicans’ relentless efforts to slash funding for vital programs rather than work in a bipartisan manner to keep the government open and address emergency needs for the American people.’
The statement comes as President Biden and Republicans in the House, led by Speaker Kevin McCarthy, have failed to negotiate new funding levels or a continuing resolution, which would keep current pandemic-negotiated levels in place as negotiations continue.
In what has become a finger-pointing blame campaign, Biden and the White House are telling the American people and voters the ‘Extreme Republican Shutdown’ would leave servicemembers working without their paychecks until funding becomes available.
‘Hundreds of thousands of their civilian colleagues in the Department of Defense would also be furloughed, affecting the ways in which the Department manages its affairs globally, including the vital task of recruiting new members of the military. All of this would prove disruptive to our national security,’ the White House release said.
In previous shutdowns, any new agreement includes backpay to appropriately compensate the servicemembers for any missed payments.
The White House’s latest statement failed to mention any specifics of the ongoing negotiations.
Several Republicans in the House have argued for the government to return to pre-pandemic funding — effectively rolling back the tremendous budget the government was granted in a time of national emergency.
A number of GOP members have opposed a continuing resolution or any McCarthy-initiated proposal.
Any solution would require a majority vote in the House and the Democrat-controlled U.S. Senate, led by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. McCarthy could also yield negotiations to the Senate, which could deliver a bill that he could then say the House must accept.
It then has to be signed into law by Biden.
The government will officially shut down when current funding levels expire at 11:59:59 p.m. ET on September 30.