Obama says he won’t sign another stopgap spending measure from Congress

3 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

President Obama says he won’t sign another stopgap spending measure from Congress.

President Barack Obama said Friday he would not sign further stopgap bills to prevent a government shutdown, warning that gridlock on a full-year spending plan threatens U.S. economic growth.

The White House wants a more permanent agreement, particularly because the short-term funding deals keep in place a series of dramatic spending limits. But Obama and his fellow Democrats differ from Republicans on budget priorities, with Democrats seeking as much as $74 billion in increased spending on education, infrastructure and other domestic and defense needs, while Republicans want about half as much only for the military. The Ohio Republican said he wants to “clean the barn up” before he leaves Congress, signaling a willingness to negotiate on several outstanding issues including the budget. Among them could be approval of highway funds as well a reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank, the 80-year-old lending institution that conservatives are trying to shut down as an example of what they call crony capitalism.

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said in a letter to Capitol Hill on Thursday that the nation would be unable to borrow more money by about Nov. 5 unless lawmakers raise the U.S. debt ceiling. It has to get done in the next five weeks.” The framework McConnell seeks would be in keeping with a bipartisan two-year budget deal negotiated in 2013. Some conservative Republicans have demanded that any spending plan eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood, the women’s reproductive health service. Over the summer, an anti-abortion group released videos purporting to show executives from the group discussing compensation for providing tissue from aborted fetuses to researchers. She has denied that the organization profits from the practice. “I understand they feel strongly about it and I respect that,” Obama said of Republicans concerned about the group. “But you can’t have an issue like that potentially wreck the U.S. economy, any more than I should hold the entire budget process hostage” over gun control.

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