Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Time short, tempers flare in budget showdown -- US Government shutdown looming once again

The specter of a partial government shutdown looms again as Congress returns to Washington with Democrats and Republicans as far apart on spending priorities as they were when winter turned to spring.

The best the two parties have been able to agree on so far this year has been stopgap spending measures to avoid any disruptions in government services while they tried to work out sharp differences over national spending priorities.

The vehicle for the debate, left simmering when lawmakers went back to their districts last week, is must-do legislation to bankroll the day-to-day operating budgets of federal agencies - including military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan - through the Sept. 30 end of the budget year. (read more)