11:33 p.m.-- Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell commended members of Congress for coming together on a continuing resolution, but warned of what he called a "much larger discussion" to come:
"We decided to make history by implementing in the middle of this fiscal year a substantial reduction in spending," McConnell said. "Once we get through this process, by the end of next week we will move on to a much larger discussion about how we save trillions."
On the debt ceiling -- which could prove to be a knock-down, drag-out fight when the federal government hits its borrowing limit next month -- McConnell was blunt:
"The president has asked us to raise the debt ceiling, and Senate Republicans and House Republicans, and I hope many Democrats as well, are going to say, ‘Mr. President, in order to raise the debt ceiling, we need to do something significant about the debt.' My definition of significant, Mr. President, is the markets view it as significant, the American people view it as significant, and foreign countries view it as significant. So for tonight, again I congratulate the Majority Leader and the Speaker; this is an important first step, but just the beginning of what we need to do to get our house, our fiscal house, in order."
11:30 p.m.-- The Senate passed by unanimous consent a continuing resolution that keeps government running through Thursday, buying Congress time to enact the deal on a six-month bill reached tonight.
The six-day bill buys Congress time to write, scrutinize, and pass a six-month spending deal that was reached just an hour before a government shutdown would have occurred.
Democrats said the bill cuts $2 billion in spending through the end of Thursday. Though passage of the broader bill looks likely, its smooth passage is not assured in the Senate, which will still have to move the bill relatively swiftly on the floor to pass it by Thursday.
The short term bill passed the Senate just minutes before the midnight deadline. “We didn’t do it at this late hour for drama,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said. “We did it because it was very hard to arrive at this point.”
11:23 p.m.-- President Obama repeatedly emphasized the fact that this continuing resolution marks the largest annual budget cut in U.S. history when he addressed the nation tonight.
"Tomorrow I’m pleased to announce that the Washington Monument, as well as the entire federal government, will be open for business," Obama said. "And that’s because tonight, Americans of different beliefs came together again.
"This agreement between Democrats and Republicans on behalf of all Americans is on a budget that invests in our future while making the largest annual spending cut in our history."
10:56 p.m.-- President Obama will speak within the next 10 minutes, according to reports.
10:55 p.m.-- It's official: House Speaker John Boehner announced that an agreement has been reached for a short-term continuing resolution that will go into next week.
"We will in fact cut spending and keep our government open," Boehner said. "We fought to keep government spending down because it really will affect, and help create a better environment for, our job creators."
10:50 p.m.-- It could be over:
"We have an agreement," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's spokesman, Jon Summers, announced in the Senate press gallery. "We'll have a statement in about two minutes."
10:46 p.m.-- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has postponed his floor speech yet again: His office now says he will speak at 11:15.
10:28 p.m.-- BREAKING: House Speaker John Boehner outlined the parameters of a long-term funding deal, telling his members in a closed-door meeting, "This is the best deal we could get out of them," according to a lawmaker in the room who asked not to be identified.
The deal is still not official, Boehner cautioned, but in a sign things are coming to a close, the House is preparing for a 5-6-day short-term continuing resolution with $3 billion in cuts, he told members, according to the lawmaker. The meeting is still underway. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., was scheduled to address the Senate at 10:30 p.m. EDT.
10:24 p.m. House Speaker John Boehner tells the GOP caucus, "This is the best deal we could get out of them."
10:23 p.m.-- Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., tells CNN’s Anderson Cooper that the Hyde amendment “doesn’t seem to be good enough” for House Republicans, resurrecting the Planned Parenthood policy rider debate (many have speculated the rider was dropped from the package this evening).
9:59 p.m.-- Former House Majority Leader Dick Armey on CNN:
"We're very impressed with the efforts that Republicans are making... At least they got the message out of the last election. It doesn't appear that the Democrats got it at all."
9:57 p.m.-- NJ's Billy House reports:
In a sign a deal has been struck, House Rules Committee Chairman David Dreier, R-Calif., says his committee is preparing for a meeting – likely tonight – to take up whatever the Senate passes in terms of a short-term CR. Asked if that would be a one-week extender, he said “shorter than that.”
9:53 p.m. House Rules Committee members have been notified to be prepared to meet tonight to handle a short-term CR, a high-ranking GOP source said.
9:28 p.m.-- Guess we're getting close...
9:23 p.m.-- NJ's Major Garrett reports that a top GOP source described the 9:45 p.m. Conference meeting as "spreading foam on the runway."
9:20 p.m.-- NJ's Major Garrett reports that, according to a source, House Speaker John Boehner just told a member of his leadership that "the president is nickel-and-diming us to death."
9:08 p.m.-- House GOP members will meet at 9:45 p.m. on the shutdown.
8:59 p.m.-- The memo from House GOP Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.:
"Good evening. There are many questions about the status of the negotiations and the state of play moving into the evening. We would like to clear up some confusion and relay that there has not yet been a deal reached. The negotiations are ongoing.
"Please stay tuned to Ben’s Whip Floor Updates for the latest information. As soon as a game plan for the evening is set – we will be sure to let you know.
"Again – thank you for your patience."
8:53 p.m.-- House Republicans received a memo at 8:20 p.m. that no deal has been reached yet, Politico reports.
8:46 p.m.-- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has moved his floor speech back for the third time this evening; his office now says he will speak at 10:30.
8:28 p.m.-- NJ has learned the controversial Planned Parenthood policy rider was scrapped from the deal the White House is reviewing.
8:23 p.m.-- NJ's Sue Davis and Dan Friedman report:
The White House is reviewing the terms of a deal between House Republicans and Senate Democrats that would prevent a government shutdown.
The potential agreement would cut about $39 billion from this year's budget and would include $514 billion in defense spending.
An announcement on the proposal is expected soon, but not in time to meet the shutdown deadline at midnight on Friday.
8:19 p.m.-- A Concord, Mass., ceremony honoring the American Revolution that was scheduled for tomorrow has been canceled over fears of a shutdown, the Boston Globe reports.
8:16 p.m.-- NJ's Sue Davis and Dan Friedman report the White House is reviewing the terms of a spending deal.
8:12 p.m.-- Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Md., on MSNBC's The Last Word With Lawrence O'Donnell: “When we had differences of opinion with President Bush, we did not push the government to the brink of closure.”
8:07 p.m.-- House Speaker John Boehner's office posted a photo of him calling President Obama to continue discussions on Facebook.
7:59 p.m.-- It's getting late. You may want to check out the best government shutdown pick-up lines, courtesy of The Daily Caller. (Ex: "Let's debate this on the floor," the brainchild of our own Matt Cooper.)
7:52 p.m.-- CNN reports House Speaker John Boehner said he will not agree to a short-term CR unless there is a longer-term deal in place.
7:49 p.m.-- NJ's Major Garrett reports on the efforts of Republicans to get House Speaker John Boehner to accept a deal.
7:44 p.m.-- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will now speak at 9 (he was previously scheduled to speak at 6 and then at 8).
7:33 p.m.-- MSNBC reports that the House gym will be closed in the event of a shutdown.
7:25 p.m.-- ABC reports on the possibility that the government will seize employees' BlackBerries in the event of a shutdown.
7:21 p.m.-- CNN reports that negotiators are now considering a three-day continuing resolution to avoid a shutdown.
7:05 p.m.-- NBC reports that the Planned Parenthood funding rider -- widely perceived to be at the heart of stalled negotiations -- may have been resolved.
"One GOP source says 'the issue has been resolved,' while a Democratic source describes the talks as 'almost there' on the so-called 'rider' that has proven to be the biggest and last stumbling block to an agreement."
6:53 p.m. Check out Atlantic.com's shutdown playlist here. "Under Pressure," "Riders on the Storm," and "Bills, Bills, Bills" are included.
6:35 p.m.-- Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., expressed skepticism about the progress of negotiations as relayed by House Speaker John Boehner.
“I am suspicious of this whole idea that what Speaker Boehner is saying is true,” in terms of the fight not being about policy riders anymore, Weiner said on CNN. “He says they’re resolved -- I don’t know.”
6:25 p.m.-- Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., and Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., have joined the chorus of conservative voices urging Republicans to take the deal and avoid a shutdown.
6:23 p.m.-- In an appropriately timed story, Time reports that Harvard University professor Gary King’s research has found that members of Congress spend about 27 percent of their time simply goading one another. King sifted through nearly 65,000 press releases issued by senators between 2005 and 2007 to come to that conclusion.
6:19 p.m.-- Senate Democratic Policy Committee Chairman Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., compared the Tea Party to a flea controlling the dog (the Republican Party, in this scenario) during a floor speech Friday, the Hill reports.
“What we have here is a flea, wagging a tail, wagging a dog,” Schumer said.
“The flea are the minority of House Republicans who are hard right, the tail is the House Republican caucus, and the dog is the government,” Schumer said. “That flea is influencing what the dog does ... and it is sad.”
6:09 p.m.-- Tea Party darling and presidential hopeful Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., in a surprising tack away from her usual incendiary rhetoric, writes on Redstate.com that Republicans should cut a deal. Bachmann asserts that the continuing resolution battle is small potatoes compared to where the GOP will have to put its energy with entitlement reform:
“Don’t get me wrong, cuts in spending are a move in the right direction,” Bachmann writes. “House Republicans have brought about a change from the spending binge of the last two years. But it’s time to face the facts. This is the “small ball” battle that House leadership has chosen to engage. The current battle has devolved to an agenda that is almost too limited to warrant the kind of fighting that we’re now seeing in Washington.
“I am ready for a big fight, the kind that will change the arc of history. And, I’m hoping that when it comes to issues like the debt ceiling, ObamaCare, and the 2012 budget, House Republicans will take the lead, draw a line in the sand and not back down from the fight.”
5:57 p.m.-- Update: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will now speak at 8, not 6 (as previously planned).
5:52 p.m.-- If you work for the government and you think you're essential, you can now put it on a T-shirt.
5:46 p.m.-- Vote on whether a shutdown is a good idea here.
5:44 p.m.-- Watch the Wall Street Journal ask people in Times Square whether they care about a government shutdown here. (Hint: most don't.)
5:39 p.m.-- Dan Friedman reports:
Faced with questions about the divergent descriptions of talks from Democrats and Republicans (Democrats cite a deal on a total cuts number, but not a Planned Parenthood Policy rider, Republicans assert essentially the reverse) Senate Democratic Policy and Communications Director Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., has repeatedly told skeptical reporters that they can check his claims months down the road via the Freedom of Information Act requests. Schumer has told reporters to FOIA emails, if “anyone tells you” that the dispute is not now over a Title X rider, as Ben Terris reported today.
In fact, Congressional records, including emails, are not subject to FOIA. Due to executive privilege constraints, access to White House records – particularly of things like high-level budget talks - via FOIA is minimal. But with his interest in such transparency- and his position as a senior member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which has jurisdiction over FOIA law, maybe Schumer can legislate a loosening of the law. Then we can FOIA his email. He may soon have some time to work on it.
5:31 p.m.-- Democrats say the shutdown is about Republicans' social agenda; Republicans say it's about spending. So who's right? Both, according to NPR.
5:24 p.m.-- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will speak at 6 p.m. Here we go again.
5:10 p.m.-- House Rules Committee Chairman Rep. David Dreier, R-Calif., on Fox:
"John Boehner just told us and made it very clear, publicly and privately, in our discussions that the riders are for all intents and purposes handled and resolved. It is about spending and that's why we have this laser-like focus on creating jobs and getting our economy growing, and we believe reducing the size and scope and reach of the federal government is the best way to do that. And I believe that we can in the next few hours bring about a resolution to this."
5:07 p.m.-- Find a list of contingency plans by agency here.
5:01 p.m.--Presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee talked shutdown politics on Fox News. Here are a few excerpts:
"I think the Republicans potentially have the most to lose, because the amount of money we're talking about is pennies -- pennies out of thousands -- and it's going to be very difficult to explain that.
“Here's the real issue. The Republicans have an opportunity to declare victory…With one third of the government [the House], they did something the Democrats didn't do. They produced a budget. The Democrats should have done this in October and they failed. The president failed. The Republicans can say they succeeded. Secondly, they can also declare that they've framed the debate differently for Washington. It used to be how much more we were going to spend. Now, with the Republicans, it's about how much more are we going to cut. And then if they can avoid the shutdown, it makes it easier for them to live to fight another day.
“The big battle is over the real long-term budget, which [House Budget Chairman] Paul Ryan has put on the table. Don't use all your water for too small a fire. It's too small a fire to use up all of your water over a couple billion dollars when the real issue is trillions."
4:57 p.m.-- Check out the Monkey Cage’s graph depicting presidential approval in the 1995-1996 shutdowns here.
4:50 p.m.-- Tim Fernholz reports on the logistics of getting a deal:
If some kind of spending deal is reached today (either a short-term extension for negotiating purposes or a final bill for the rest of the 2011 fiscal year), it will need to pass both the House and the Senate and be signed by President Obama before midnight to avoid a shut-down. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor has said that an emergency extension will be needed if a final deal is reached today, with the hopes of passing a final bill within days.
The legislation based on the deal would be drawn up first by the House Appropriations committee, congressional sources say, and then passed to the House Rules Committee to draft an emergency rule to bring the bill onto the house floor, although House Republicans placed a rule in their last Continuing Resolution that would allow them to vote on a final deal in one day. It’s not clear if House Republicans would violate their pledge to make all legislation publicly available for 72 hours to pass a deal or a short-term extension today and avoid a shutdown.
In the Senate, any final deal would come to the floor thanks to a unanimous consent agreement between Senate Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., before being sent to the White House for the president’s signature.
4:44 p.m.-- Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., said on Fox News that he was “more optimistic now than I was even five hours ago.”
“I think some of the cooler heads on the Republican side are prevailing in this sense,” Van Hollen said, adding later that “a couple of Republican senators said earlier today, ‘Let’s not allow that issue [Planned Parenthood funding] to stop the government … that we should come back to fight that fight another day. These are controversial issues. They don't belong."
4:42 p.m.-- Ben Terris reports:
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., told reporters that the impasse is about nothing more than the Title X rider, and that “if anyone tells you otherwise,” e-mails obtained through the Freedom of Information Act would prove that Democrats “are exactly right.” Schumer added,“If we’re very close we will figure out a way to keep the government running.”
4:36 p.m.-- Ben Terris reports:
Senator Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said, “The issue is not spending, they are using it because they know they can’t hide behind their Title X rider."
4:35 p.m.-- As the threat of a shutdown looms closer, congressional offices have started telling employees what to expect in the next pay period. Chris Doby, the Senate financial clerk, sent a letter to all Senate employees telling them they would be paid for 8 days (instead of 15) when they collect their checks April 20. FEHB funding would not be terminated, but outstanding health insurance premiums would be withheld from future pay after spending authority is renewed.
4:16 p.m.-- Dan Friedman reports:
One mark of the Senate Democratic Caucus under the messaging leadership of Senate Democratic Policy and Communications Committee Chairman Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., is unapologetic repetition of talking points. That approach has been on display as never before Friday as Democrats have left no question on Friday that their strategy is to pound away at the claim that Republican are willing to shutdown government to cut off federal funding for Planned Parenthood. “I am angry as a woman that …. there are those in the Republican party in the House who are willing to shut down the government, take people’s paychecks away from them because they want to deny women access to health care in this country,” Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairwoman Murray told reporters.
That message was repeated by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid multiple press conferences and by and a group of female Democratic senators in a Friday press conference.
“Today, it’s all about women’s health,” Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska, said, summarizing Democratic talking points Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich, ahead of 1pm Democratic conference meeting.
3:43 p.m.-- Another one from Fawn Johnson: Rep. John Duncan, R-Tenn., and Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., will have to make their presence felt through sheer television magnetism at a Knoxville, Tenn., Republican “Lincoln Day” dinner Friday night. The two members were supposed to be wining and dining their GOP compadres in person, but they have now cancelled the last flight they could get out of Dulles International Airport in case their votes are needed for a possible last-minute deal. They will make a video appearance instead.
3:26 p.m.-- Fawn Johnson writes that the Education Department would furlough 93 percent of its staff during the first week of a shutdown, leaving only 312 employees to perform essential functions, including the conduct of audit work funded by the economic stimulus bill; and the obligation, payment, and support of student financial aid.
In contrast, the Transportation Department would furlough only 31 percent of its staff during a shutdown, leaving 33,550 total positions still at work, including life and safety positions (air traffic, hazmat, etc.) and positions funded by multi-year appropriations (R&D, airport improvement). Of the DOT positions to remain open, 75 percent are in the air traffic organization.
3:10 p.m.-- Last time there was a shutdown, there was no Homeland Security Department to deal with. The agency has been eagerly awaiting a directive about what they should do in case funding runs out. Marc Ambinder has the answer:
The directive instructs federal agencies involved in disaster management to place more emphasis on determining what capabilities they have, and demands the development of emergency plans that mitigate the potential for future disasters. Presidential Policy Directive 8 also formalizes government cooperation within the private sector.
Agencies must submit reports about how well they're prepared to handle disasters that fall under their purview. The National Security Council will review them and draw up the government's Homeland Security budget based in part on what these reviews say.
The six-page directive (2 MB PDF) can be viewed here.
3:03 p.m.-- Coming up soon: opposing press conferences on the Planned Parenthood rider. Speaking fr the Democrats: Rep. Diana DeGette, D-Co., head of the pro-choice caucus. For the Republicans: Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers.
2:41 p.m.-- Here is the Q&A between reporters and Reid after his press conference:
Q: [During negotiations Thursday night] the vice president got a little exasperated and said, well, fine, let the American people decide this issue. What does that say about the state of negotiations that a man who doesn’t often get flustered seemed to be flustered last night?
Reid: Joe Biden wasn't flustered but he was damn mad, and it shows how we've come to such an impasse here. The number has been agreed upon. Last night it was agreed upon. Now, the president has had a conversation -- at least one conversation with the Speaker, and it shouldn't be over the so-called Title X and that's what it is, and that's too bad and that's why Joe got upset.
Q: By my count Democrats and Republicans have held at least five press conferences so far today to blame each other for the impending shutdown. This close to a shutdown shouldn't you be together trying to come to an agreement?
Reid: Don't I wish?
Q: So why aren't you?
Reid: All we need for them to say is the agreement we made last night will be fulfilled.
Q: Senator -- what do you mean by that? We don't know what that was.
Reid: I told everyone what the agreement was. We agreed at a number. We agreed at 78. I told you that earlier today, the number was 78.
Q: [Question inaudible]
Reid: We're happy to analyze any deal, but remember there's no question about the number. Everybody understand that. The number is 78. It was agreed upon last night.
Q: The speaker earlier said there is no deal on a number.
Reid: What do you mean? The speaker has been saying this for a long time. I have the greatest confidence that John Boehner is having a difficult time in his caucus and I give him that, but that does not mean that we can't have an agreement when agreement was reached. I don't know what happened last night, but as I indicated at 4 o’clock in the morning I got an e-mail saying we tried but they backed off the number they agreed to.
Q: What's the status of your short-term bill to prevent a shutdown tonight and when do you hope to bring that to the floor?
Reid: What we're trying to do now, and I've talked to Senator McConnell today a couple times and we're trying to work something out procedurally. As you know, the Senate floor can be a morass, a labyrinth, and we're trying to work our way through that. I hope we'll hear from the Republican House leadership soon that the number they agreed to last night is done and they've moved off Title X. If that's the case, then we'll have to work through their sending us another bill. Once agreement is made we can figure out a way to go forward. If there's no agreement made we're going to have a number of competing continuing resolutions, unanimous consent requests because procedurally at this time with all the necessities of getting 60 votes it will be hard to do that. So I hope in fact if the Republicans in the House can't agree to what they agreed to, then what we'll have to do is see if we can come up with unanimous consent request to have votes on very short-term funding measures for the country. One last question.
Q: You said earlier this morning you were working -- sorry, I'm back here. You said earlier this morning you were working on a one-week offering to counter what was cast yesterday and I'm wondering what levels that would be at and also if that would [ inaudible ].
Reid: It would have a week's funding for the government and it would take care of the troops. My crew back here said that I should give you a little more information on the 78. The agreement last night that was made was to maintain the number that we had with domestic discretionary spending and increase mandatory spending and some defense cuts. That was agreement made last night. And that got to 78.
Q: [ Inaudible question ] .
Reid: The short-term, we have a short-term CR that is just a date change to keep the government functioning, but also it has taken care of our troops on that same CR -- the rest of the fiscal year.
2:29 p.m. -- Reid and Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., just delivered the Democratic rebuttal to the Republicans’ press conference earlier. Here are their statements. Reporter Q&A to follow.
Reid: The House leadership with the Speaker have a very clear choice to make. They don't have much time to make that choice. They can keep their word and significantly cut the federal deficit or they can shut down America’s government over women's access to health care. If that sounds ridiculous, it's because it is ridiculous.
We all know the federal budget is very complex, but the choice here is a simple choice. A lot of cuts in our proposal were tough choices, very difficult to make. The choice though should be very easy. We use their word rider around here a lot lately and now it's become plural, riders. Let's remember what's really riding on the proposals that we have here. If the government shuts down over access to, for example, cancer screenings, our fragile economy will really be hurt. Let's remember that in five weeks the GDP would drop one whole percent. Our intelligence and diplomatic efforts around the whole world would be significantly harmed. And in the process our credibility of this great country of ours would be damaged. We have obligations to our allies around the world, and we wouldn't be able to meet those obligations that we've made in many instances.
What if a family has worked and worked in fragile economy and they are finally able to qualify for a home loan? Eighty percent of them, of course, are government-supported loans. They would stop, wouldn't be able to get one, and it's not on that person wanting to buy a home. How about that person that's been trying to sell a home? Small business won't be able to get the loans that they need, taxpayers won't be able to get the tax refunds that they have earned.
A federal government shutdown doesn't mean they lock the doors to the Capitol Building in Washington, but it does mean that it has everyday consequences for people throughout America. It's not only federal employees, almost a million federal employees are on pins and needles right now because they, just like everybody in America, have trouble making all their payments on given months. They may have waited for a few months to buy a new car.They have been planning for a long time to take a vacation.
As Mark Warner pointed out to us today, this shutdown would have a tremendous impact on the state of Virginia. This is Virginia’s big weekend. It's the Cherry Blossom Festival. People plan to come here all year, and one of the things they want to do when they come here is take a walk down the mall, go to the National Art Gallery, go to one of the great Smithsonian museums. Won't do that, they'll close at 12:00 tonight. All this to stop women from getting the regular tests and preventative services that they need.
Ninety percent of Title X money is for preventative health services. It is against the law that any money be spent for abortion, and they're not. It's against the law. This is all a loss leader they have. And if Speaker Boehner can't sell that to his Republicans in the next few hours, it will be crystal clear to the American people that Democrats were reasonable and Republicans are responsible for shutting down the government. The issue here is funding local health clinics that provide services like cancer screenings that save women's lives and save money down the road by catching diseases that are expensive, expensive to treat, and sometimes too far along to treat. The fact that Republicans have made this about women's health and not about money or anything controversial is really a shame. It’s un-American.
Murray: For months and intensely for weeks we have been told by the Republican Caucus and the House members that this debate is about cutting spending, it's about the deficit, and it's about the debt. We heard that, we've come together, we have moved incredibly difficultly to meet that challenge. We're here hours before a shutdown when families are worried about paychecks, when people are worried about whether or not their FHA house is closing next Wednesday and it will fall through, whether or not the contract they have in place is going to be kept, how they're going to pay their mortgage, and about the deficit they're being told it's no longer about that. It's about taking away the rights of millions of women in this country to get access to preventative care.
It's about an extreme ideologically stronghold on the other side that has said we aren't going to let your family get a paycheck next week or keep our parks open or have businesses' contracts go or FHA loans go because we want to take away a basic privilege of -- for women in this country for access to basic health care. We stand here today united as a caucus across ideological lines, men and women from every region to say not on our watch. We agree we need to cut the deficit. We have compromised and compromised and we are to a number that some of us are going to have to swallow darn hard knowing the consequences of that. We understand the debt and deficit and getting our spending in line, but no one in this country should be given the horrendous choice of you will not have a job on Monday unless you give away women's rights in this country. As a caucus we stand together and say no.
2:02 p.m.-- Republicans and Democrats might say they want to avoid a government shutdown, but someone's rooting for it: the Libertarian Party. In fact, they don't just want a temporary shutdown. They would like to see a permanent shutdown of most of the federal government.
"Just think how a permanent government shutdown would allow so many Americans to regain the blessings of liberty," said Libertarian Party Executive Director Wes Benedict. Things they would like to see permanently shuttered: the Department of Education, the presence of American troops in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, the War on Drugs, welfare, the IRS, and more. Read more here.
2:01 p.m.-- House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., said in a closed door meeting with members that steps have been taken to government from shutting down at midnight if a deal is struck later today, Sue Davis reports. He assured the lawmakers that there would be some type of "bridge" put forth to allow the added time necessary to put the accord's details into legislative form. Read more.
1:40 p.m.-- The State Department has released information about who will be furloughed in a shutdown. The broad outline is below and you can read more here.