It's day 15 of the shutdown, and the nation is just two days away from a government default.
While Senate leaders have set aside their differences to come up with a bipartisan plan to end the stalemate in Washington, the House GOP is still seeking changes to Obamacare as a condition for reopening the government and raising the debt ceiling.
The refusal by House Republicans to back down from their stance that any deal must include alterations to the Affordable Care Act could throw a wrench in the Senate's hopes that an agreement could be close.
The White House has called the latest GOP proposal "a partisan attempt to appease" the tea party.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat, said Monday that he was "very optimistic" about negotiating a deal. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell echoed Reid's sentiments, telling reporters that there had been "some very constructive exchange of views."
The White House postponed a scheduled meeting with congressional leaders Monday in order to give the Senate more time to work, a move seen by many political analysts as a positive sign.
The deal being discussed would reopen the government and fund it through January 15. It would also raise the debt ceiling through February 15. Republicans and Democrats would also appoint negotiators to cut the deficit by December 15.
A deal over the debt ceiling must be reached by Thursday, or the U.S. will default on its loans. Economists have long said that a failure to reach an agreement on the debt ceiling would have much more serious consequences than the government shutdown.
Senate Republicans are meeting Tuesday morning to review the deal. House Republicans could vote on their bill as early as Tuesday night.
If neither of these deals pass in one or both houses, then it's back to the drawing board--and the clock is ticking.
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