How to Explain the Continuing Resolution to Your Friends at Happy Hour

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Steve Ercolan and Brian Resnick
Sept. 19, 2013, 9:01 a.m.

Con­gress’s on­go­ing feuds over fund­ing the gov­ern­ment and rais­ing the debt ceil­ing are con­fus­ing. 

So don’t let any­one mock you at the bar later when you are asked, “What’s not to get about a bill to keep fund­ing the gov­ern­ment that has been turned in­to a Re­pub­lic­an ves­sel for an ul­ti­mat­um to de­fund the Af­ford­able Care Act?”

For those just tun­ing in, the ba­sic state of play is this: The House is poised to vote on a con­tinu­ing res­ol­u­tion that de­funds Obama­care and keeps the se­quester cuts in place; mean­while, the Sen­ate is sure to keep fund­ing Obama­care when the CR comes its way. House and Sen­ate Re­pub­lic­ans have been bick­er­ing over this, with House con­ser­vat­ives say­ing Re­pub­lic­an sen­at­ors like Ted Cruz won’t do enough to fight Harry Re­id on the is­sue.

And, yeah, they need to come to a res­ol­u­tion by the end of the month to avoid shut­ting down the gov­ern­ment. Got it? You can also think of it as a foot­ball game. Time’s run­ning out in the fourth quarter. The Re­pub­lic­ans need to break the Demo­crats to get the touch­down that will ob­lit­er­ate the ACA. And here’s how they can win, or lose.  

Click for a lar­ger view.

(Steve Er­colani)

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