Looks like some Republicans lawmakers are getting tired of the budget-cutting-obsessed antics of the freshmen House class. Thursday night, Sen. Scott Brown bashed his party for "irresponsible" spending cuts that "establish the wrong priorities that would disproportionately affect low-income families and seniors." Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has decided to sit this fight out. Senate Republicans are anonymously grumbling that to The Hill's Alexander Bolton that "People want to move on." And Friday, House Speaker John Boehner pointed out that a government shutdown would hurt businesses.
"Let's all be honest, if you shut the government down, it'll end up costing more than you save, because you interrupt contracts," Boehner said, Talking Points Memo's Brian Beutler reports. "There's a lot of problems with the idea of shutting the government down."
Thursday, Rep. Michele Bachmann and Mike Pence, among other lawmakers, spoke before 250 die-hard Tea Partiers protested on Capitol Hill Thursday, who at one point erupting in chants of "CUT OR SHUT!" They don't want House Republicans to budge from their plan to slash $61 billion from the rest of this year's budget. But others in their party are taking the longer view: "Some Republicans wonder whether it’s worth the political price to insist on the full $61 billion in cuts when that’s only a small fraction of the $1.6 trillion deficit projected for this year," Bolton writes.
The real fight will apparently be for next year's spending: House budget guru Paul Ryan unveiled his plan Friday, and while he won't raise the retirement age for Social Security, he wants to slash $1 trillion from Medicaid over 10 years.