On Friday, the U.S. House sent to the Senate a measure that asks the Senate to reconsider H.R. 1, the long term fiscal 2011 spending bill that the House passed in February. The vote was narrow, 221 to 202, on the bill that would prohibit lawmakers and the president from receiving a salary if the government shuts down. Going into the weekend lawmakers were negotiating on what the extent of spending cuts should be for the rest of the fiscal year. The $33 billion proposed spending cut is still on the table.
Representative Chip Cravaack, R-Minn., says he'd have to see the proposal. Cravaack believes he has a mandate from the people to cut spending. Leaders in both chambers have said they want the current stopgap funding law to be the last short-term continuing resolution this fiscal year.
This week, lawmakers on each side of the Hill will have time to talk, or not talk, about a government shut-down. Last week, Representative Allen West, R-Fla., told a demonstration led by Tea Party members, "If you want to talk about shutting down the government, go right over there and talk to Chuck Schumer and Harry Reid, go down to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. and talk to the president."