As Democrats and Republicans dig in their heels on the budget under threat of impending doom, neither looks likely to budge and a government shutdown looks more and more inevitable.
Democrats are crying foul. They say that while they’ve agreed to numerous cuts proposed by Republicans, now the criterion for compromise is the agreement of 218 Republicans—the number House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, has apparently told both President Barack Obama and Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., must agree to any negotiated package.
No longer, apparently, is Boehner willing to achieve a compromise that can garner enough bipartisan votes; now the votes must all be Republican. According to a senior Democratic aide quoted in The Washington Post, “Our takeaway from the meeting was that Republicans will not accept anything that cannot pass the House without 218 Republican votes. “That means $73 billion isn’t good enough.” The $73 billion refers to cuts already agreed to by Democrats—$33 billion on top of an already-negotiated $40 billion. That account has not been denied by Boehner’s office.
Possible outcomes, regardless of who agrees to what, are these: the SEC may halt enforcement to an undetermined degree. So far the functions considered essential are still being determined, with a statement to come later on Wednesday or Thursday morning, according to SEC spokesman John Nester, who said plans had not yet been finalized and any discussion at present would be premature.