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Stopgap measure may prevent government shutdown

by Adam Russett on March 1, 2011

Many Republican lawmakers have advocated for a government shutdown over the past year to combat what they say is a radical agenda from the Obama administration. However, it seems that many newcomers to Capitol Hill have decided that this may not be their best option as long as fiscal responsibility is practiced.

"I am committed to finding that point at which we can make reductions and get this fiscal ship turned around while finding a way to keep government from shutting down," Representative Kevin Yoder (R – Kansas) told The New York Times.

Today, officials will vote on a stopgap measure that will introduce some spending cuts and guarantee that the government will continue running through March 18, according to Politics Daily. This regulation would enact $4 billion in cuts over the next two weeks alone while legislators try to create a more permanent solution.

Republicans from the House have drafted a plan that will cut $61 billion, mostly by targeting programs such as Planned Parenthood, healthcare reform and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Most lawmakers are trying to rewrite the measures now so that it can pass in the Democrat-controlled Senate. So far, it appears that the two parties are beginning to agree on some cuts, mainly in the way of earmarks and highway funding.

"We're pleased that there seems to be some progress, and we think we're moving in the right direction," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said at a press conference, the news source reports. "But this is still a process that's being worked up on the Hill."

Many newcomers to Capitol Hill, some of whom gained power through the support of the Tea Party, are still aiming at government involvement in sectors such as public education, broadcasting, the arts and environmental regulations.

"This is not just some academic exercise for me," Representative Todd Rokita (R-Indiana) told The New York Times. "I am trying to actually shrink scope and size of government."

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