President Obama has issued a veto threat on all bills meant to help certain segments affected by the government shutdown.
These include making sure funding keeps flowing to veterans, allowing local funding to keep D.C. running, reopening national parks, allowing National Institutes of Health trials to continue after kids with cancer were turned away yesterday, and paying the National Guard and reservists.
“The Administration strongly opposes House passage of H.J. Res. 70, H.J. Res. 71, H.J. Res. 72, H.J. Res. 73, and H.R. 3230, making fiscal year 2014 appropriations for very limited activities. Consideration of appropriations bills in a piecemeal fashion is not a serious or responsible way to run the United States Government,” the Office of Management and Budget said in its veto threat.
“Instead of opening up a few Government functions, the House of Representatives should re-open all of the Government. The harmful impacts of a shutdown extend across Government, affecting services that are critical to small businesses, women, children, seniors, and others across the Nation. The Senate acted in a responsible manner on a short-term funding measure to maintain Government functions and avoid a damaging Government shutdown. The House of Representatives should allow a straight up or down vote on Senate-passed H.J. Res. 59.”
The Rules Committee met on the bills mid-morning to bring them to the House floor.
Obama’s denial of these requests comes after he signed a unanimously approved bill to keep active-duty military pay flowing on the eve of the shutdown.
House Democrats are largely standing with the president in opposing the latest bills, which they say picks-and-chooses favorite programs.
“In what can only be described as a disgraceful partisan maneuver, just after most of them voted for a government shutdown, House Democrats have now chosen to turn their backs on America’s veterans,” Republican Study Committee Chairman Steve Scalise (R-La.) said last night after the first vote failed. “Our military veterans should not be used as political pawns by Washington liberals who refuse to negotiate on the responsible funding of government. Americans who’ve served our nation in years past and defended the freedoms we enjoy deserve the same respect as those who proudly serve today. House Republicans will continue working towards a solution to fully fund the government, while also working to end this government shutdown.”
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) dismissed the bills as “just another wacky idea.”