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Shutdown Showdown Friday; Update: Deal Announced, No Shutdown (for now)

By Doug Powers  •  April 8, 2011 10:00 AM

**Written by Doug Powers

Note: Scroll down for updates

“Cut it or shut it” Friday has arrived, and there’s still no deal:

WASHINGTON (AP) — Uncomfortably close to a deadline, President Barack Obama and top congressional leaders have only hours to avert a Friday midnight government shutdown that all sides say would inconvenience millions of people and damage a still fragile economy.

Obama said he still hoped to announce an agreement on Friday but did not have “wild optimism.”

Will the road to a leaner more responsible government begin today, or will the Friends-N-Fat Cats Protection Plan™ get an extension? (“a little of both” won’t be an acceptable answer)

It’s nice to know that the left isn’t losing perspective or trying to scare people with wild tales of misery:

–Jesse Jackson says the budget battle is the Civil War all over again (only if the Gettysburg Address began, “Four score and seven billion-dollar earmarks ago…”)

–Rep. Louise Slaughter (if there’s a better name for a NARAL and Planned Parenthood crony I have yet to see it) claims Republicans came to Washington to kill women.

–Nancy Pelosi: The Republican plan will starve the elderly! Ironically enough, the woman whose 111th Congress single-handedly strapped each and every American with over $10,000 in new debt also called the GOP budget a “path to poverty.”

–Eleanor Holmes Norton said a government shutdown would be the “functional equivalent of bombing innocent civilians.”

But if all else fails, there’s always the last resort of dumping trash at Boehner’s house.

We’ll have updates as the day goes on, provided there some to bring.

Update: Reuters is reporting that budget negotiators differ by $6.5 billion.

Update II: Until a budget is agreed upon, Rep. Barbara Lee is doing a water-only fast with the SEIU — insert your own joke here.

Update III: It’s looking like one of the final sticking points is Planned Parenthood funding, but I’ve also heard Republicans say that the sticking point is the overall level of the cuts.

Update IV: John Boehner just delivered a very short statement that doesn’t make it sound like the two sides are as close to a deal as is being reported. You be the judge…

Video from Right Scoop (h/t Ed Morrissey). Thankfully, no tears:

Update… whatever Roman numeral we’re up to now: The collective MSM must sit around a big table every morning to get their talking points straight. In this case, it’s the “adult Obama vs. the childish Tea Party”:

Well, you know what they say: When the going gets tough, the adults go to Colonial Williamsburg.

Update VI: Harry Reid said Republicans want a shutdown because they want to close Planned Parenthood clinics. Republicans don’t want women to get cancer screenings, according to Reid (wasn’t Obamacare supposed to handle all this?).

To back Harry up, here’s a clip from a 1957 interview with Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger in which Sanger says that the greatest sin in the world is denying women cancer screenings… or maybe not. (h/t Weasel Zippers):

Update VII: The vacuous Hollywood limo-libs have been slow to react this week, but one is speaking out: Gwyneth Paltrow stands with Planned Parenthood.

Meanwhile, Sarah Palin stands for our troops.

Update VIII: Harry Reid is like a diamond-tipped drill when it comes to effortlessly plunging to new depths. This afternoon, Reid said that because Republicans want to harm women, the cherry blossom festival might not happen:

“This is Virginia’s big weekend. It’s the cherry blossom, the cherry blossom festival. People plan to come here all year, and one of the things they want to do when they come here is take a walk down the Mall, go to the National Art Gallery, go to one of the great Smithsonian museums. Won’t do that, they’ll close at 12:00 tonight. All of this to stop women from getting the regular tests and preventative services that they need,” Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) said at a press conference with a large number of Democratic caucus members this afternoon.

Republicans want to harm women? Planned Parenthood performed 332,278 abortions in 2009. We’ll assume half of those were females. You probably know where I’m going with this.

Update IX:: “Keep your Boehner out of my vagina!” If you keep your hands out of our wallets, you’ve got a deal.

Why is the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League (NARAL) involved in any of this? Why would they be freaking out about defunding something they point out PP gets no funding for in the first place? It couldn’t be because taxpayers contributing to PP’s bottom line on one side of the business frees up resources for another side of their business, could it?

On a different note: Obama has canceled his Colonial Williamsburg weekend vacation. A possible indicator that nothing’s going to be solved today.

Update X: Maybe the Williamsburg vacation can be quickly re-scheduled — a deal has been reached to avoid a shutdown. Details are still, as they say, sketchy:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama and congressional leaders reached a last-minute budget deal on Friday, averting a government shutdown, Republican lawmakers said.

With a midnight deadline looming for a government closure, the compromise between Obama’s Democrats and opposition Republicans requires lawmakers to approve stopgap funding to keep federal agencies running into next week until the budget agreement can be formally enacted.

Republican Congressman Devin Nunes told Reuters that “the deal” — a plan for $39 billion in spending cuts — was presented to House Republicans at a closed-door meeting and that most members would vote for it. There was no immediate comment from the White House or congressional Democrats.

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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