Government shutdown: House and Senate stand their ground on spending

By WEEK Producer

Government shutdown: House and Senate stand their ground on spending

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October 1, 2013 Updated Oct 1, 2013 at 2:29 PM CDT

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- A large portion of the federal government is shut down but House Republicans and Senate Democrats are standing their ground in the fight over spending, which has turned into a battle over the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

Both chambers worked late Monday night and picked up the fight at square one Tuesday morning with no compromise in sight.

As the government settled into its first shutdown in 17 years, President Obama stood with Americans who are benefiting from the health care law that has become a deal-breaker in the congressional budget fight.

"No. This shutdown is not about deficits. It's not about budgets. It's about rolling back our efforts to provide health insurance to folks who don't have it,” the President said.

Senate Democrats slammed the door on a House plan to keep on talking because Republicans insist on talking about Obamacare.

"Speaker Boehner and his band of Tea Party radicals have done the unthinkable,
they have shut down the federal government,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

Meanwhile, Republicans blame Democrats.

"They'd rather see the government shut down, than do anything to protect
the American people from the consequences of Obamacare,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

Democrats refuse to continue debate on a law passed three and a half years ago and on Tuesday the health care exchanges opened to uninsured Americans as scheduled.

Not open were non-essential government offices and agencies to Washington's National Zoo, national museums and parks.

More than 800,000 federal workers are off the job until further notice.

"Congress needs to get their act together, seriously. They're like kids on a playground,” said Department of Agriculture employee Leathey Chandler.

Federal workers worrying, waiting and like the rest of us, wondering what Congress will do next.

President Obama signed a law making sure members of the military get paid but some government workers will be lucky to get paid at all.

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