Beware concise politicians

Different factions in Congress are giving their advance interpretations of the possible government shut down. Here’s the NY Times various versions of the two:

The Democrats:

Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader, offered a lengthier, scathing criticism of Mr. Boehner and House Republicans, accusing them of wanting to shut down the federal government by insisting on cutting funds for women’s heath services.

“This is indefensible and everyone should be outraged,” Mr. Reid said on the Senate floor. “The Republican House leadership have only a couple of hours to look in the mirror, snap out of it and realize how truly shameful they have been.” …

Democratic officials familiar with the negotiations said that proposed restrictions on money for Planned Parenthood remained the chief sticking point, and that attempts to resolve the disagreement through alternatives like allowing a separate floor vote on the issue had not been successful. Democrats said they were told by the Republicans that the votes of anti-abortion social conservatives would be needed to move any budget measure through the House.

The Republicans:

In a terse statement to reporters, House Speaker John Boehner said there is “only one reason we do not have an agreement yet and that is spending,” and asked “when will the White House and when will Senate Demorats get serious about cutting spending?”…

“The largest issue is still spending cuts,” Michael Steel, a spokesman for Mr. Boehner, said Friday morning.

The NY Times says these are contrasting explanations, but they don’t point out where the contrast lies. Given the Republican well-documented plans for Planned Parenthood, the contrast seems to be in informative detail,

One thought on “Beware concise politicians

  1. CNN adds this:

    One of biggest obstacles to a deal involves whether reductions in mandatory spending programs, known in appropriations parlance as “changes in mandatory spending” or CHIMPS, should be part of spending cuts.

    Examples of mandatory spending programs include Pell Grants, the Children’s Health Insurance Program and some types of highway funding. Such programs are funded for multiple years at a time, with the spending set for the time period covered, exempt from congressional authorization each year.

    Democratic sources have said they want about half the overall cuts in this spending bill to come from mandatory spending programs, and they have proposed the necessary reductions in programs at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Justice Department and the Treasury Department, and in Pell Grants.

    Republicans note that reducing the spending in a mandatory program for one year doesn’t prevent the amount from returning to its original level the following year.

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