Washington, DC, United States (4E) – President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) remain not in the mood to negotiate while Democrats rejected a proposed congressional supercommittee on Tuesday extending the federal government shutdown. House Republicans passed new piecemeal funding legislations to ease the crisis.
Obama told reporters at the White House that his phone call to Boehner failed to produce a breakthrough in ending the shutdown that began a week ago. The President failed to convince the Speaker to hold a vote on a budget bill without conditions.
Boehner, for his part, failed to convince Obama to negotiate on changes in the Obamacare and spending cuts. The President reiterated he is willing to talk with Republicans after a clean spending bill and higher debt ceiling bill are passed.
Meanwhile, the House proposed forming a special committee of House and Senate members to work out a deal on reopening the government and raising the nation’s $16.7 trillion debt ceiling.
The House voted 248-168 to pass the Head Start for Low-Income Children Act, which funds preschool programs for children from low-income families to the tune of $7.586 billion per year until Dec. 15.
The measure is the tenth short-term funding resolution for 2014 as Republicans resort to piecemeal legislation to fund the government. Earlier, the House passed resolutions funding the Washington, D.C., government; national parks; the Department of Veterans Affairs; the National Institutes of Health; the National Guard and reservists; the Women, Infants and Children program; the Federal Emergency Management Agency; and the Food and Drug Administration.
The Democrat-led Senate has yet to act on the measures as senators want a blanket spending bill for the entire government rather than one agency at a time.
The House also passed the Pay Our Military Act, which ensures payment of the military and their civilian supporters even during the shutdown. This was approved by the Senate and Obama signed it into law before the shutdown took effect.