Last week the House concluded its work on the continuing resolution (CR) to fund the government for the remainder of the fiscal year. The House worked tirelessly and late into the night the entire week to identify necessary spending cuts as they crafted a bill to fund the government, something the previous Congress neglected to do. At the end of a long week, the House passed a bill that would cut $61 billion from last year's budget.
Through the hours of debate that took place on the floor last week the one thing you did not hear from the conservative budget cutters was anything about a government shutdown. And yet that is all that we are hearing from big-government liberals. It was reported that an aide to former Speaker Nancy Pelosi said a government shutdown was likely. Minority Whip Steny Hoyer said, "If the government shuts down, it will be the Republicans' responsibility." Mrs. Pelosi later offered a short-term extension of the CR that would freeze spending, cutting none.
Last week we wrote about the principled stand Speaker Boehner took when he said he would not move any short-term CR at current spending levels. Immediately, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid - flanked by Senators Durbin, Schumer and Murray - attacked Speaker Boehner for threatening to shut down the government.
They're not fooling anyone. Conservatives in the House presented a modest plan that begins the process of reining in reckless spending. The liberal alternative is to invoke the specter of a government shutdown and continue the status quo. If the government does shutdown, Americans will know where to place the blame.