Boehner's Speaker Post May Be on the Line If Government Shuts Down

Some members of the GOP coalition have expressed fears about a full-scale government shutdown.
3:00 | 09/30/13

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Transcript for Boehner's Speaker Post May Be on the Line If Government Shuts Down
This is a special room. I'm Dan -- for -- new -- this ABC news digital special report eleven hours now until the government shuts down for the first time. Since the original Toy Story movie was in theaters that is some historical perspective for you. And as that clock does wind down no new negotiations. On Capitol Hill. We're joined from Washington a political director Rick Klein has been watching this all and Rick -- know both sides are working at this. Both chambers working at this the senate poised to send a clean bill. With obamacare fully funded but the question is are there enough numbers in the house to get it through. We got lots of time right you can watch all the twists or in movies and I'm pretty -- This is a critical question now in it all revolves around house speaker John Boehner what does he wanna -- he can make this happen very easily. If you -- to bring a vote up right now on the floor of the house you get virtually all the Democrats and the Republicans to join him that government would stay open the president. Could it could sign it before midnight we could all have an early evening and a nice dinner. That's not gonna happen the reason it's not gonna happen is that speaker Boehner doesn't want to lose his job over this but what's going on underneath the surface is very important interest right now. There are a number a growing number of house Republicans who feel like they have fought this -- long enough. And they're not gonna ever concede that they are we waiting any white flags they also feel like. They have made the point they need to make and that they feel like it's time for speaker Boehner to just bring this to the floor and be done with -- that's the point -- -- -- -- have -- -- for -- -- -- -- -- -- -- before -- -- started. But he had to let off some steam with the Tea Party members we could be fast approaching the time in this debate -- where they feel like they've had their say in the month finding other day. You made a great point Rick and the fact that a lot of Republicans may be publicly saying that they in -- would support this but when it actually comes on to a vote they actually all those words. So how many numbers and how big of -- Tennessee does Boehner have to get behind him with Democrats already on -- side. -- Democrats are are almost certainly in a joint him and join him in large numbers he's got to think about it is a simple math equation 233. Republicans in the house 217 is a majority so if you lose just 1720. -- them and then all of a sudden you're down beneath the number he's gonna lose more like eighty of them that's the number of Tea Party members who say. They won't fund the government in less obamacare is out of there so he has to make up all of that ground get 607080. Plus Democrats. Thing is there are Democrats that are ready to help them they see this as a chance that the liberal blow to speaker Boehner that he be doing this only -- after being forced into doing it by the by the facts on the ground. And they feel like it's a better thing to do that you can get funding for the government to and you keep obamacare intact that would be a victory for them -- I would say Democrats are dancing in the end -- quite yet but they are feeling good about where they stand. Are we -- -- go to the White House now where Jake Kearney is briefing the press let's -- his comments. Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen thank you for being here thank you for your patience. Of course I wanted to. Make sure that you hurt. The president's remarks. At the end of his bilateral meeting with the Israeli prime minister prime minister Netanyahu. -- which in addition to. His room comments about. The meeting about our. Relationship with Israel -- unshakable. Support for Israel's security. The discussion the two leaders had about. Syria and Iran and the Middle East peace process among other things the president took a question and answer -- about. The fact that. As of now. It is up to the House of Representatives to. Decide whether or not they want to shut down -- government. -- In order to make. And ideological point or whether they will follow the Senate's lead and pass a extension of government funding at current levels. For a number of weeks so that we can get about the business of discussing and negotiating. A longer term budget agreement. With that I we'll take your questions. A little bit more -- president. Does that about having conversations with leaders on a hill -- and speaker Boehner and his TV progress in talks started very. But I think president said what -- said which is that you can expect that he will be having conversations with leaders on the hill as he has in the past. And I I assume that would include speaker of the house be. Point I think though is that we are -- A moment where. The House of Representatives has to decide in the speaker of the house is the leader of the house -- the leader of house Republicans must decide whether. Roughly sixty members of his caucus the Tea Party. Faction will dictate. To the American people whether that whether the government will shut down because they have not been able to achieve through normal means. Their ideological agenda which is to. Repeal and do away -- -- -- do away with in some manner or other. The Affordable Care Act the irony of course being that. Tomorrow. In Roman begins in the Affordable Care Act in millions of Americans for. Whom access to affordable insurance has been but I dream there will be the opportunity to enroll. In the Affordable Care Act through the exchanges in the marketplaces. And received come January 1 affordable health insurance for the first time and that's gonna happen. Nothing will Alter that that will happen. -- -- He's spoken yet to be her -- I don't have any other conversations -- new conversations to read out I think -- the president indicated as it. He expects that he will. Of course speak with leaders. In the coming days. Again there's nothing -- in. Debate that. The president has made clear all -- long that he is willing and eager to negotiate over our budget priorities and to reach a common sense. Solution to. Funding our government. That's what his budget was about which many of you wrote about and and correctly assessed to represent. A compromise. And we have. Encourage Republicans to show the same willingness to compromise all -- long and the president has met with many. Members of congress of the Republican Party over the course of the year to have those discussions what he will not do is. -- go along with the idea that the government should be shot down over. This desire to. Unwind history. And achieve through. Threat. And extortion. What Republicans couldn't do through the legislative process. -- through the election process. It's just not fair to the American people it's not fair to the millions of Americans -- Will have access to affordable health insurance for the first time. It's an act of ice -- we have said -- that that's none of this is acceptable. This is just a blatant extortion and the irony about it is by the Republicans will say of the Republicans who support this. Extortion game -- extortion racket will tell you that oh well you know that's and that that's compromise we just want you to do this on the Affordable Care Act and chip away at it here -- delay there. And yet they'll also tell you very quite clearly that the goal the ultimate goal and purpose of this is to do away with the affordable care -- that take away all those benefits for millions of Americans. And increase the deficit dramatically. While doing something -- never mentioned. But. In the end they want to do that for. Continuing resolution that -- on the government for. 45 days. Sixty days what comes next. What would they demand next -- not part of it was they wanna they want everybody's boss to be able to tell them to tell every woman in America that. Whether or not they can get contraceptive coverage. -- want to attach that. To this debate. Here this is this is not as. Others have said this is not the way congress ought to operate and it's irresponsible and reckless. To. Hold the functioning of the government hostage. To these ideological imperatives. -- isn't sure inevitable question. Well the president said and I just now and I certainly agree with and that. -- that he is not resigned to a shut down because there's an avenue open to the house. After the senate does what we expect -- to send back to the housing clean CR that. Just continues funding the government at current levels -- it contains no. Concessions to the democratic agenda or the president's agenda. Just continues funding the government at current levels. For a number of weeks in order to allow for the negotiations the president is eager to engage. That's the responsible thing to do the irresponsible thing to do is to. Attach a bunch of political ideological demands. To this simple. Proposition of funding the government not shutting it down. And you know say you'll shut it down if you don't get when you want. Taking -- -- of the movement fly you know I. Used walked the halls of congress as a reporter and and back then knew a lot more about -- minute by minute developments. In fact I did that the during the last government shut down. Here -- ninety side and there are 96 but I I lead a team your colleagues to tell me more precisely what the thinking. House Republican leadership that is. The shutdown affect White House staff. -- -- White House like other. Agencies within government is affected they'll be. Reductions in staff will have a skeletal staff. There's obviously. Essential staff -- exempted. Or accepted which I think is the proper term. And that's true in other areas. But you know we will be a extremely lean operation if this comes to pass. Lastly we'll -- on this trip to Asia. We don't have any. Changes to announce we planned to make this trip the president as president. Looks forward to and believes it is important to travel to Asia in order to promote our economic interest in Asia. And our strategic interest in Asia. There are. American jobs. They can be created through our engagement with Asia this. Fastest growing region of the world and then an enormously important region -- region when it comes sort trading relationships and partnerships so. You know we. We have this trip scheduled and we intend to take it you will see obviously what happens as the -- unfolds. In -- move around a little bit by -- April. 36. He said it will be skeletal staff and mean operation. Indeed -- shutdown happens. Could you get -- break and could you give us numbers. However free to the Office of Management and Budget which handles all of these. Specifics. And can can give you more information about how it breaks down but doesn't you know from. It here is. As old as I am and remember what. What it was like in the mid ninety's and and remember also what you reported just when there were there was at least the potential to shut down. There are. Significant reductions in staff and furloughs to take place. Here as elsewhere if if a shutdown occurs and that's that. For we'll correct. Again I that's my understanding but I I I -- I hesitate to answer he's got ten questions because. There's. There are far. Better sources for that specific information. -- I was standing that today even White House's times is still. Parts through all technicality. He -- for the White House from the second is that the case -- talk to us about some of the things change you. Look here here's the thing there there -- effects here. And their effects throughout. The government. But those pale in comparison to the effects and impacts -- that shutdown would have on women and children and seniors. Shortly after shut down if it were to occur. Federal funding for the women -- and children program may not be sufficient to cover benefits and agencies. May have to cut off services to mothers and young true children. Senior nutrition grants which help approximately two and a half million seniors annually. It -- them or remain healthy and independent by providing meals and related services would not be funded. Programs that our nation's veterans depend on would be effective for example veterans call centers and regional offices would be closed. Immediately effective immediately. So those services that help veterans understand their benefits including call centers hot lines and regional offices will be closed. Vocational rehabilitation and education counseling for veterans would be limited. Veterans business support centers would be immediately closed. And should -- extend through late October compensation pension education and other veterans benefits. Would be cut off. Important researching consumer safety programs would be halted in the event of a -- including research -- -- life threatening diseases. Work to protect consumers ranging from -- child product's safety to financial security to the safety of hazardous waste facilities. Would seeks. -- The sandy recovery efforts the west Texas investigation another fire and emergency response the response grants would be halted. And on that I just want to point out that when it comes to disaster emergency disaster relief there is the fund that is operational so. Should there be. Disaster that would be funding available for. Initial and immediate emergency relief but what would be affected by shut down -- the ongoing -- recovery efforts and the investigation into the explosion west Texas and likes it. Those really -- the impacts and effects that matter far you know. We like every other agency would be affected. But it's it's the folks -- -- the country who will be affected. Concerns us most. That information but again how the president and to -- -- it is scheduled. Skeleton crew and operation here and it also. The president said today. Not long ago that he is not -- the idea that the government will shut down he remains hopeful that. The house will. Come to the reasonable. Decision that it is appropriate to simply extend funding of the government. Further for several weeks in order to allow for the kind of negotiations that they claim they want. About our budget priorities. So he remains hopeful at least not resigned to the -- -- it -- shut -- and when it comes to. The mechanics of the trip and did the people -- and equipment that gets a position abroad for a trip like this I just would have to refer you to -- -- -- the agencies involved Department of Defense Secret Service. Jen and John Judy. Do you really -- terms UR's -- -- long and -- You from this podium in the past describe that -- were -- whose government are very these continuing resolutions has told government. When they won VCR we sort of the ultimate told -- Well I'm I'm not -- -- ideas floating around the -- there are tons of them and we respond all day to them right now the option available as I understand it. To the house to the speaker. Will be. The opportunity to follow the Senate's lead in funding the government for a number of weeks. In a clean continuing resolution and we would support that you know. This process again has been one where. A small faction very extreme faction of Republicans in the house. Has. Essentially. Forced its leadership to. Go along with the proposition that it is better to shut down the government with all of the negative effects that we've talked about. And better perhaps to default on our obligations for the first time in history than to allow law that was passed and signed and upheld by the Supreme Court. To be implement. A law that would provide. Millions of Americans. Who do not have insurance access to affordable insurance. And one might surmise that the extreme -- That you see among Republicans right now over. The Affordable Care Act and obamacare. Is a direct result of the fact that beginning tomorrow. There is a concrete. Development that means that millions of Americans will for the first time be able to sign up for that health insurance and as I think. I've seen Republicans -- It'll be a lot harder to get rid of obamacare. Wants these individuals who have had a hard time getting affordable health care. Are able to see the benefits of the affordable health care. The Affordable Care Act provides so. -- -- here again I'm not gonna negotiate ideas that are floated to me from any wrote this. Briefing room except to say that you know we don't think. Extraneous political agenda items ought to be. Well maybe from but but but -- I think I'll just make it make a blanket. Blanket opposition to that but but but just it just -- me just say that did you know. Congress ought to do his job and only has a few absolute. Functions and one of them is to ensure that the government. -- and it's essential operations funded. And others to ensure that the United States. Pays its bills as it has throughout. The entire. History of the nation. -- -- Model but in the last couple weeks Democrats. Including president. Have and he has not used all these result -- -- some of them have been used. Have -- Republicans as -- arsonists and darkness and extortionist. Black mailers. They got to -- hot or container -- the -- talked about bombs being strapped to chest. It almost sounds as if this White House is trying to taunt Republicans and -- the government. Well that's certainly not the case -- in as I think I just -- my colleague -- Dan Pfeiffer on CNN's there not long ago say that. It was Mitch McConnell who in this. So iteration of these negotiations similar ones two years ago who referred to. The economy being -- hostage that they could take in negotiations with the president so I don't think. -- this is language that. Either side is exclusive rights to -- is only used in the past. But here's the facts there. When he comes to funding the government or when it comes to paying our -- The Democrats in the president on one hand are asking for nothing no concessions. No. Ideological riders know. You know the special pet projects no. Political gotcha items. In exchange for the simple extension of government funding in exchange for. Congress ensuring that we do not the fault. Republicans on the other hand. Are attaching. To in in the concrete bills that they pass and then in there imagine nations anyway when they talk about what they'd like to attach all sorts of political agenda items some of them. Wildly inconsistent with where the American people want. The country to move and and that includes. Issues that are wholly unrelated to the budget and wholly unrelated to the debt and the deficits that we. Must manage and and the responsibility of congress to ensure that we don't default -- -- features wonderful Jim no longer -- all. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell popcorn lung X York senate and the -- Few minutes. So -- slickers and movement on -- on Capitol Hill says. Congress has responsibilities. -- government funded and wonder what president. Sign -- well -- just mention this happened the last couple minutes so I'm not gonna. Give you statement administration policy. Except to say that has long been our position that congress ought to make sure that the government doesn't shut down and they ought not to attached to. It's -- their responsibility to ensure that the government doesn't shut down. Any ideological. Poison pills or you know any agenda items that they can achieve through the normal. Process. But it -- we'll have to see what. Congress does there's a lot of movement in congress that doesn't result in actual action. Here. What the president is doing everything from -- To promote the role. Talk over the -- -- it's going to be doing -- Well I don't have any. Information at this time for you on the president's schedule tomorrow -- is certainly the case and I appreciate you bringing up that. You know. Department of health and human services and others -- engaged. -- and preparing for tomorrow's. Opening day of enrollment and there's a lot of activity around that. And it will be the first day of the six month open enrollment period for individuals to. Basically shop for. Health insurance and in a way that they've never been able to before and and for so many of them to have options available to them at affordable prices that they've never had before and we expect. -- -- -- Marketplace is open and exchanges opened and you can. As a consumer. Review your options either online -- Through that night. Telephone call centers they'll be a lot of when you're shopping -- people will assess what's available to them and then as time passes and we move closer to January 4 more and more. The millions of Americans who have this option available to them we'll take advantage of it. And and that will be a very good thing indeed. -- These three -- you continue to read. We obviously believe it's important that the American people be apprised of what's happening here at the White House and we will. Endeavor to provide that information as best we can with the skeletal staff. Are you confident that this will be political disaster for. -- I wouldn't make any kind of predictions and and I mean that hope that that suggests that we're looking for an. Outcome. I'm not I mean I don't know at night and and I honestly I think it's important to know that. We don't care about the politics of this the president cares about making sure that the American people aren't hurt by it. Because. You know we talked about this and when it went with regards to the comprehensive immigration reform. Legislation that passed with a strong bipartisan majority in the senate and some questions about whether you -- secretly we didn't hope that the Republicans in the house would block it because it be that continued bad news for the Republicans when he came to their. Ever worsening relationships with -- relations with Hispanic Americans across the country -- and -- know. We would love them to take advantage of the political opportunities available to them by passing comprehensive immigration reform and -- improving their standing among Hispanic Americans by doing -- and we would love. For Republicans to do the right thing. And maybe. Improve their standing among. The American people and congress is standing among the American people by simply not shutting down the government and not defaulting on our obligations. Very quickly someone -- -- and he was the -- what's not. The desolate nothingness. Right correct. The idea -- repealing. -- obviously. To lay off for a year now not as part every personal. The answers no and nothing is negotiable when it comes to the -- him. And as the president said. Recently when it comes to extending the governments like he's willing to talk about ways to improve the health care law if Republicans. A lot of the portable care act is designed. It's is essential elements were designed by Republicans. You think Dan and I believe that there -- Republicans out there who. Probably -- honestly have some good ideas although their. Most likely afraid to talk about them in. Party circles but the you know the president is eager to do that what he's not willing to do is have those. The negotiations under the threat of shutting down government and certainly not under the threat defaulting on our obligations. You're playing this tax cutting this tax on medical devices so now my answer that would netter at that that's that's the not -- you look. Congress has. Throughout that this time -- the opportunity to consider and pass legislation. To try to. Get majorities big enough in both houses to achieve it compromise between house and senate and senate to the president that's the way it worked it it is supposed to work and as you know the -- -- in particular have done little else over the past couple of years an attempt to. Legislate ways that either. -- -- repeal or other ways. Negatively affect. The affordable care to that date they can certainly endeavor did keep doing -- but to have that. Attached to the simple responsibility if on the government. It's just not acceptable which is why we've seen really no negotiations going basically everything the Republicans out there is not a time -- securities it is not a it it is not a concession. To keep the government it is not a concession. To pay America's bills that is a responsibility. And as I email with a reporter out there it is enshrined in the constitution. Congress has the power big debts congress has the power. To authorize funding. If if if it -- otherwise the president would go about it and there would be no drama no -- Washington. What is the president doing over these next apply to try to keep the government. Again it is not. Unfortunately within the president's power. To pass legislation on the hill the president -- -- -- well what's he doing things the president said just moments ago that -- he we'll certainly be he expects that having conversations with leaders in congress. But it is. Pretty elemental here. There's an option to keep the government open as an option to shut it down for ideological reasons and he would not resume. To have. The power of persuasion with in the House Republican Caucus that perhaps John -- does or perhaps other leaders and act conference rather -- -- -- -- -- -- President said he was open to negotiating on the budget also -- him. On a -- -- -- there on the latest developments in Washington DC but in the meantime I -- to bring in. Our political director Rick Klein talk about this is Rick is that the big statement you -- of the sudden I -- it is well Jay Carney saying this is blatant extortion. Tough words -- for the White House and a house that appears to be pretty steadfast in its conviction. That's right in this is a White House that is confident about its position even as the house's dug in on this we heard Jay Carney also say. That I don't care about the politics well that is not the truth they are very much attuned into the politics in this and they feel like. They -- winning the political argument and that's one reason that they are. Relishing the position that they're in right now but let's be clear tomorrow comes that we don't have government funding very bad things start to happen -- -- cascading series of events and a partial government shutdown. There's only one president and the conventional wisdom has been that Republicans will take the blame they took the blame but we had to shut down in an in the mid nineties and Bill Clinton benefited politically from that. I don't know that it's necessarily -- the same playbook moving forward. That's shut down for 21 days in fact that happened from the end of 1995 to 96 there's a certainly this is something that. Is uncharted territory -- if in fact it does happen the length of time it could happen. -- just to recap a little bit of at noon today the house did convene at 2 o'clock -- couple of minutes now -- the senate will convene. But earlier house speaker John Boehner had this to say. It. -- my goodness of their such an emergency where are they. It's time for the senate to listen to the American people just like the -- listen to the American people and -- -- one year delay of obamacare. In a permanent repeal all the medical device -- So -- the question. Is this if in the bottom line is about compromise -- about some kind of a conciliatory attitude in Washington DC why don't Democrats in the White House see it that way. Because Democrats in the White House -- this is insult and a half a compromise on they know that Republicans don't -- -- shut -- the government on this they know where the polls are on this. -- know that Republicans. By large feel like the only thing they can do poorly politically here would be a prolong -- shut down they've made their point so. Democrats -- something like there's an incentive to negotiate over the over the the government shut down if you like the -- been told all along that the Republicans don't want this. So these silly of them to give in -- at this late stage their expectation. Continues to be that house Republicans blink. I wanna get your reaction is on this senator Barbara Boxer had outlined today perhaps an inspirational move for congress to keep the government funded. Here's what she suggested. Act like -- speaker of the house not just like the speaker of the Republicans. And passed my bill. So your people don't get paid you'd be surprised manifesto come to the tape. So the big question is Rick what is this bill that senator boxer is talking -- out. Her bill would deny -- paid for members of congress during a government shut down their -- is currently protected by the constitution so even. One of the ironies is if congress fails -- do its job they still get paid explicitly get -- under the constitution. Her idea there's been bipartisan support from the symbol the house of the senate -- the sake let's share the pain as members of congress at least feel the bite. That furloughed government workers up to -- -- actually troops in the field are gonna feel if there's a government shutdown so. It's the idea it's the kind of idea that makes so much sense that you -- down not to happen because of this so much other protracted fighting going on in Washington. But -- a lot of folks and ask that question will members of congress get paid answer in less -- of the boxer's bill that's passed -- yes. Now of course we have no answer to -- -- exactly what's gonna happen in the next ten hours from now. If you cannot try to play forward a little bit -- October 17 when the nation will reach that debt ceiling. -- negotiations now how -- the back and forth between both chambers and between both political parties. Have an effect on whether or not that debt -- its rates on the seventeenth and October. This fighting is spring training. For the big league event it's gonna happen a couple of weeks because the consequences are so much worse than you could argue -- -- -- different ways there's a school -- -- says Republicans will feel like. They got their mileage out of this last fight they did what they -- do they made their point and let's not screw around with the debt ceiling that. If we go past that we're the potentially be defaulting on debt. There's another school thought that says look of Republicans walk away empty handed from -- -- They're going going to the next fight truly energized to go to the mat to make a big fight over obamacare. And what have you and what what complicates this is the president has said there will be no negotiating over the debt ceiling he has made it larger than even this policy -- said. It would upset the balance of powers in the constitution. If we were to start -- concessions around the congress'. They simply civil responsibility to pay its bills so you have two -- that are coming at it in a very different direction and this clash will look like nothing. Compared to the brink of some of October 17. And in -- the president did outline his position and his conviction earlier today when he was meeting at the white house with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu I -- -- play just a moment of that. Those comments that he had earlier this morning. Not at all resigned and all have a chance to street or service. Room. -- some further thoughts for the press as the day goes on -- The bottom line is. The senate has passed. -- that keeps the government. Does not have a lot of extraneous issues to. That allows us -- to negotiate. A longer term budget and address a range of other issues. But that ensures that we're not shutting down the government and we're not shutting down the economy. At a time way. A lot of families -- there are just -- some traction themselves the whole -- This consequence of the financial crisis. Stood before congress has two responsibilities. -- -- you pay the bills and I am. Not only. Open to fight you. Negotiations. Around -- long term. Budget that make sure we're investing in middle class families -- helping the economy grow. Given people we're working hard a leg up. And greater security and stability and -- whistled for a long term. Challenges. In terms of debt and deficits. But the only way to do that. Is forever. Sit down in good faith without threatening. To harm. Women veterans it. Children. With -- government shutdown and certainly. We -- have any kind of meaningful negotiations under the cloud of potential default. The first in US history there's not a world leader. If you took a poll who would say -- It would be responsible. War. Consistent with America's leadership in the world. For us not to pay our bills. We are the foundation. The world economy. And world financial system. And -- Our currency is the reserve for -- We don't mess -- And we certainly don't. Allow. Domestic policy differences. On issues that are unrelated to the budget. In danger not only our economy but the workshop so. I suspect there will be speaking to people the leaders today tomorrow and the next thing. But I'm certain that there is -- -- -- solution to this if he had set aside. The short term politics. And -- long term here. What simply requires servers -- Act responsibly. And do what's right for the American people. All right and -- those were comments or may just a little bit earlier today at the white house with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu by the president's side there. Rick I -- get your thoughts on this because the president had said essentially the same statement last week that you don't mess with the US currency you don't mess with the US reputation. In -- credit markets speaking to the debt ceiling. That'll be approaching on the seventeenth of October is that the message that the White House's most holding faith in. To convince members of the house Natalie for this their current budget debate but for that future debate. They don't -- ever have another debate over the debt ceiling White House aides have acknowledged privately to -- -- many others that they made -- mistake. I ever suggesting that as part of negotiations. It happened in 2011 they know that if that happens again very bad things could could result as if you if you're going into that every time. Where the minority party says Morgan not gonna do -- -- everything that's unless you do acts then -- making that. A condition of the negotiations are changing as the White House as the balance of power is as delineated the constitution. So they don't wanna go there ever again they want to just make this -- core responsibility of congress which it has been since the debt ceiling first. Came about about a hundred years ago congress does it the president -- -- they don't like doing it but it's part of the responsibility of governing and that's the way the White House wants to -- this. And what is happening right now 1 o'clock polite if we can the senate is actually voting right now it's just in being a couple of moments ago after the senate chaplain did call. Back into session. Rick procedurally walk me through this you can give me governmental operations 101 what will happen on the senate. Well the last action was in the house. They approved overnight Saturday a bill that once again. Sent to that sent to the senate a bill that would fund government operations by delaying obamacare by one year the individual mandate to lead by one year this is the senate. Voting to send it back to the house technically it's it's a vote to table the motion. Puts it back in the house's court this ping pong game hasn't playing out over the better part of a weak right now -- now the House of Representatives. Has about ten hours to respond to the Senate's latest gambit. They could again try to do something else put something else is part of this continuing resolution just to keep the government continued operations going. Or they can decide to accept it and be done with the the entire mess the likelihood is that they try once again even though the high in the short to -- going back to the -- Harry Reid and senate Democrats are in a rush necessarily they took yesterday off even after the vote. Well overnight on Saturday because they wanted to run out as much of the clock like when you're up and a in a football game you try to eat up the clock that's what was going on and now only ten hours left to find something that can be doable in the house. If the senate does round the clock as which it did as you put it yesterday and now goes back -- the house can they run -- out again even to this very last moment if in fact the house does vote on something today. San it is very good at it consuming as much time as possible -- -- -- public pressure for about brought to bear on Democrats to make sure the you act as promptly as possible because a question of blame will quickly. -- into this equation as soon as we have a potential shut down people that's what happened well -- Harry Reid spent the night out at dinner instead of voting in and I think he's in a bear some blame for that as well so. They have to be careful not to look like they're doing what we -- don't know what they're doing which is trying to back the other chamber up against a deadline as much as possible. Yes and of course because Washington Washington DC to be very difficult for them to actually pull anything like that off. Our Rick Klein thank you so much -- we know you're going to be busy this afternoon and we of course we'll continue to keep you updated. The -- -- -- -- -- we'll let you know we're -- -- live streaming both the senate vote that's occurring right now and also Jay Carney briefing the press at the White House. A complete report on ABC news dot -- now on Dan Butler New York. With this ABC news digital special report.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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