White House preparing for shutdown

posted at 10:12 am on April 5, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

At least on the PR front, the White House has begun preparing for a government shutdown this Friday even after scheduling a summit for today on the budget. Both ABC and the Washington Post get plenty of spin from unnamed sources within the administration on the impact of a shutdown today, signaling that Barack Obama wants to play hardball. Meanwhile, Republicans frustrated with a lack of action in the Senate, which has yet to pass a single version of the budget, have proposed a new one-week continuing resolution, but one that cuts $12 billion in spending:

With the clock ticking towards Friday’s federal budget deadline and President Obama hosting congressional leaders for budget talks at the White House on Tuesday, top administration officials have instructed agency officials to begin sharing details of shutdown contingency plans with top managers. This marks the next step toward both curtailing government operations if a budget impasse occurs and informing federal workers whether they are considered “essential” personnel who would stay on the job despite a shutdown.

Though Obama and congressional leaders remain committed to avoiding a shutdown, “given the realities of the calendar, good management requires that we continue contingency planning for an orderly shutdown should the negotiations not be completed by” Friday at midnight, Office of Management and Budget Deputy Director Jeffrey Zients said in a memo. The message was sent to the government’s deputy secretaries and chiefs of staff, who handle day-to-day management issues for agencies and departments.

OMB confirmed the authenticity of the memo, which was obtained from a senior government official who provided it on condition of anonymity.

ABC reports on the more dire consequences that the White House wants to use to put pressure on Republicans:

During the 21-day government shutdown of 1995-96, the Washington Post reported that National Zoo “Lot E didn’t have any cars, but it had piles of chunky elephant, rhino, hippo and giraffe manure. That’s when you know you got yourself a government shutdown. The manure usually is sent to a greenhouse operated by the Smithsonian Institution for composting, but during the shutdown, recycling hippo scat wasn’t deemed essential.”

The zoo this time promises that no animal waste will be stored in the parking lots, the Washington Post now reports. But the shutdown will mean parks closed, federal employees furloughed, citizens will have difficulty getting answers to any questions about Social Security benefits or Veterans’ benefits.

The economic recovery will, according to the Business Roundtable, Mark Zandi, and Goldman Sachs, be hobbled.

Curiously, Jake Tapper reports without comment the Democratic allegation that John Boehner “doesn’t want to be seen” negotiating with Obama on the budget, but the article includes this tidbit:

President Obama later this morning hosts congressional leaders at the White House to try to cobble together a compromise for a short term budget to avoid this – polls indicate that unlike with the Clinton v. Gingrich shutdown, the American people would hold Obama and Congress equally responsible for a shutdown.

Boehner will be at this meeting, which seems to negate the spin that Tapper reports here. There seems to be a lot of giraffe manure in this spin, and it’s all coming from the White House.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Good to see the Democrat media is on top of this as usual.

Tim Zank on April 5, 2011 at 10:15 AM

So shut it down.
We’re broke anyway..

TexasJew on April 5, 2011 at 10:15 AM

One must assume the Democrats wanted a shutdown, as they didn’t pass a budget when it was due and completely in their hands.

MayBee on April 5, 2011 at 10:15 AM

Obama so wrongly believes this will be a repeat of the Gingrich Clinton standoffs.

Back then NO ONE was concerned about the deficit.

Today, most people who breathe and think at the same time are highly concerned about the deficit and wild spending in Congress.

Good grief, that huge turnover in 2010 nationwide was because of reckless spending.

Obama, bring it you fool, you have misread everything, you can misread the public mood here, too.

karenhasfreedom on April 5, 2011 at 10:16 AM

OK, I am starting to get cranky. These peeps in DC are really starting to piss me off.

karenhasfreedom on April 5, 2011 at 10:17 AM

PBHO is looking forward to a shutdown, it makes a ready excuse to hit the links.

Bishop on April 5, 2011 at 10:17 AM

Milk-it baby…

CynicalOptimist on April 5, 2011 at 10:18 AM

Cripe tapper, don’t give in to the spin

cmsinaz on April 5, 2011 at 10:19 AM

And just this AM I read the federal government in March spent 8x what it took in in taxes.

tarpon on April 5, 2011 at 10:19 AM

SHUT IT DOWN!

GarandFan on April 5, 2011 at 10:19 AM

“At least on the PR front,”
Enough said…

mjbrooks3 on April 5, 2011 at 10:19 AM

All the Repubs need to do to not be blamed is to continue to run ads with Harry Reid telling us that cowboy poetry is NECESSARY spending and refusing to cut that out of the budget.

game, set match.

karenhasfreedom on April 5, 2011 at 10:20 AM

And this is a bad thing how?
Seriously.
Everyday Obama & his stinking admin stays in charge doing something, we lose money.
Stop the gravy train!

Badger40 on April 5, 2011 at 10:20 AM

And everyone is for cutting spending, until their gravy train is affected.
Medicare, SS, grant $$ for college, etc.

Badger40 on April 5, 2011 at 10:21 AM

Shut ‘er down, boys.

kingsjester on April 5, 2011 at 10:23 AM

Ed,

You need to take a second look at your post from last week re GOP house deeming HR1 as being passed. You were convinced that this was stupid on the part of the 221 GOPs that voted in support.

Per Paterrico:

I have an argument that the bill is actually constitutional, here.

I did not come to this easily. As you will see if you follow the link, I initially shared Ed’s disdain for the bill and the Republicans who voted for it. But my commenters have convinced me that I was wrong.

It is a subtle argument and it takes time to digest. When I first saw it, I reacted harshly and dismissively. But read it over and give it some time. You might be surprised.

Patterico on April 4, 2011 at 12:39 PM

AH_C on April 5, 2011 at 10:25 AM

Nobody has ever told me what a government shutdown entails, nor have I seen any of our vaunted “representatives” talk about it… can anybody weigh in on that?

ultracon on April 5, 2011 at 10:28 AM

This, is, last, year’s, budget…
Spin that tidbit Liberals…

mjbrooks3 on April 5, 2011 at 10:28 AM

I really think the Donks are scared of it hence they’re trying to pull a B’rer Rabbit Briar patch on us.

They know if we shutdown, they will get the blame, so they would rather bluff us with filibusters to save PP and any other distractions to get us to cave and let them have their budget.

The CRs are actually fine with them since they are so small in comparison, but to give any momumentum to Ryan via HR1 and his new proposal would be the beginning of the end. So the peeps must be distracted.

AH_C on April 5, 2011 at 10:30 AM

Democrats want a shutdown and will do everything in their power to bring that about. They assume Republicans will be blamed, but hopefully most Americans are smarter than that.

bopbottle on April 5, 2011 at 10:32 AM

When it hits the fan some will splatter on both sides. If nothing else it will get Americans to pay attention to the free fall we are in…or maybe not.

NickDeringer on April 5, 2011 at 10:32 AM

MJ, the gop needs to say that loud and often

cmsinaz on April 5, 2011 at 10:36 AM

But the shutdown will mean parks closed, federal employees furloughed, citizens will have difficulty getting answers to any questions about Social Security benefits or Veterans’ benefits.

Aside from furloughs, what’s the change? Oh, and the furloughed will be reimbursed the pay no doubt.

Les in NC on April 5, 2011 at 10:39 AM

[S]ignaling that Barack Obama wants to play hardball.

He’s so tough when he’s intentionally ruining America.

SouthernGent on April 5, 2011 at 10:40 AM

I’m assuming that something is being funded now, that won’t be if the Democrats and Republicans pass a budget. I’d love to know what it is!!!

bflat879 on April 5, 2011 at 10:43 AM

PBHO is looking forward to a shutdown, it makes a ready excuse to hit the links.

Bishop on April 5, 2011 at 10:17 AM

I bet he finds the funds to fuel AF1 though.

fossten on April 5, 2011 at 10:43 AM

Back in the day, in DC and while overseas, we had a government shutdown (or a couple) and non-essential employees were told to stay home, government was closed. Only essential employees were tasked with keeping essential services in order.

I was told to come in to work, and could not, as several of my colleagues were allowed to, stay home.

At the time, and now, I have to wonder if shutting down government is such a bad thing.

If we have so many non-essential government employees, and the Nation continued to exist without them sitting at their desks eating time, energy and money, why not let government shutdown?

Why not tell non-essential employees to stay home?

Why not tally up who these non-essential employees really are and then, once government starts up again, cull the herd? Fire non-essential employees? Furlough them, perhaps, for an extended period?

Great way to find out who is essential and who is just on the dole with a fancy title.

coldwarrior on April 5, 2011 at 10:44 AM

There will be a budget agreement at the WH summit.

The msm will give all the credit to Obama.

It’s coming.

artist on April 5, 2011 at 10:46 AM

I bet he finds the funds to fuel AF1 though.
fossten on April 5, 2011 at 10:43 AM

How else is Michelle Antoinette supposed to get to the Riviera for some fine shopping, flap her arms?

I doubt the White House lobster-tail budget will suffer either.

Bishop on April 5, 2011 at 10:49 AM

Giraffe turd sandwich.

Can someone please get TOTUS to explain a shutdown will hurt the economy?

NeighborhoodCatLady on April 5, 2011 at 10:50 AM

Control the narrative and guilty, desperate Democrats are disarmed.

Speakup on April 5, 2011 at 10:50 AM

Will shutting it down save money? Yes? Then shut ‘er down!

right2bright on April 5, 2011 at 10:50 AM

Personally, John Boehner is one of the few figures in Washington I have come to like MORE as I see him in action. I sense the fact he is going to avoid shutting the government down, if at all possible, despite the antics of Team Obama and the Democrats — because by doing so, he takes away a favorite media meme. I think this is very savvy.

That he is clipping expenditures while doing so is a nice plus. It makes Boehner’s team seem more in charge, and responsible.

Mutnodjmet on April 5, 2011 at 10:51 AM

I doubt the White House lobster-tail budget will suffer either.

Bishop on April 5, 2011 at 10:49 AM

The citizens demand to know! Is Obama eating and feeding his friends foreign or domestic Wagyu beef??

coldwarrior on April 5, 2011 at 10:52 AM

Nobody has ever told me what a government shutdown entails, nor have I seen any of our vaunted “representatives” talk about it… can anybody weigh in on that?

ultracon on April 5, 2011 at 10:28 AM

Fire and brimstone coming down from the skies! Rivers and seas boiling! Forty years of darkness! Earthquakes, volcanoes! The dead rising from the grave! Human sacrifice! Dogs and cats living together! Mass hysteria!

/left

CurtZHP on April 5, 2011 at 10:52 AM

There will be a budget agreement at the WH summit.

The msm will give all the credit to Obama.

It’s coming.

artist on April 5, 2011 at 10:46 AM

I would normally say “count on it”…but this guy owes so much to so many, that he just may be foolish enough to let it shut down. He is so egotistical he may think he can talk his way out of taking the blame.

right2bright on April 5, 2011 at 10:52 AM

Well people, the “enlightened” elected these irresponsible, big spending idiot Democrats now get ready to suffer the consequences. It’s better to shut it all down and start from scratch because the present course is not sustainable and we will soon collapse under the weight of this enormous debt. You can’t parasite off the fruits of your neighbors forever because soon they will have no more to give.

rplat on April 5, 2011 at 10:54 AM

Does a government shutdown mean they’ll stop “Walking” Guns across the border?

That should be good news to the people of Mexico.

Galt2009 on April 5, 2011 at 10:55 AM

That he is clipping expenditures while doing so is a nice plus. It makes Boehner’s team seem more in charge, and responsible.

Mutnodjmet on April 5, 2011 at 10:51 AM

In a very “non-confrontational” way he is gaining ground. The libs are panicking, he is (so far) resolute…kind of the “talk softly but carry a big stick”.
Funny how the libs portray him as the crying senator, and it’s them who are doing the crying.

right2bright on April 5, 2011 at 10:56 AM

Tru dat right2bright, with the lsm help he will think that

cmsinaz on April 5, 2011 at 10:57 AM

Just when I started having hope again in Tapper. *sigh*

As for Obutthead…he’s scared. If Dems can’t compromise on cuts, then the Republicans shouldn’t yield. The ball is in the Dems court and they seem to be the ones wanting to play chicken here.

capejasmine on April 5, 2011 at 10:57 AM

That should be good news to the people of Mexico.

Galt2009 on April 5, 2011 at 10:55 AM

Americans Killed While Waiting To Cross Border

Tuesday, Apr 5, 2011 | Updated 7:41 AM PDT

A mixed martial arts fighter was one of two Americans gunned down in an execution-style killing near the San Ysidro border crossing Monday morning.

And of Americans…

right2bright on April 5, 2011 at 10:58 AM

What do you call 100 politicians in the bottom of the Atlantic?

A good start.

shick on April 5, 2011 at 10:59 AM

That was harsh of me. Wish I hadn’t said it.

shick on April 5, 2011 at 11:05 AM

Nobody has ever told me what a government shutdown entails, nor have I seen any of our vaunted “representatives” talk about it… can anybody weigh in on that?

ultracon on April 5, 2011 at 10:28 AM

The reason The Left are so concerned is that shutting down the Federal government won’t make a hill of beans difference in your life. THAT IS WHY THEY ARE SCARED OF IT.

SouthernGent on April 5, 2011 at 11:06 AM

But Team Boehner flipped the script last night and came up with an audacious counter offer. Rather than prorated cuts of $2 billion a week in exchange for continuing resolutions, Boehner’s budget team is offering up a $12 billion slash in exchange for just one week of continued operations.

Now, the three-day clock that Democrats believed would trap Boehner creates a scheduling problem for Obama. Unless Democrats want to have to vote down a $12 billion cuts plan and shut down the government, they need to come up with an offer that Boehner likes today.

J_Crater on April 5, 2011 at 11:07 AM

How else is Michelle Antoinette supposed to get to the Riviera for some fine shopping, flap her arms?

Bishop on April 5, 2011 at 10:49 AM

Actually I believe, after seeing her arms, she could make it to Pennsylvania with only one potty break.

fossten on April 5, 2011 at 11:09 AM

“White House preparing for shutdown”
At least they are preparing for something other than the next party.

docflash on April 5, 2011 at 11:11 AM

The thing about giraffe manure is that it falls from a great height. In the case, the White House.

Mason on April 5, 2011 at 11:16 AM

Can someone point to a single substantive prophecy by Marc Zandi that he actually got right?

BKeyser on April 5, 2011 at 11:17 AM

If Obama does a cameo at today’s budget hearing — walking in and out in about five minutes while leaving his minions to play hardball with Boehner and the other House Republican leaders — it would pretty much be par for the course. Today’s meeting is likely only to give the administration the spin that they talked to the GOP leaders, but they have no interest in not shutting down the government; the odds of any serious negotiations from this White House are remote, because they think they can recreate 1995 all over again.

jon1979 on April 5, 2011 at 11:18 AM

The reason why Zero wants a government shut down is so he has an excuse not to get up and go to work in the morning.

Brat4life on April 5, 2011 at 11:19 AM

AH_C on April 5, 2011 at 10:25 AM

Unfortunately, the only thing that did was give me an inferiority complex.

Cindy Munford on April 5, 2011 at 11:22 AM

Shut ‘er down, boys.

kingsjester on April 5, 2011 at 10:23 AM

Yup, and serve an eviction notice at 1600. Let’s see who matters and eliminate those jobs.

katy the mean old lady on April 5, 2011 at 11:25 AM

This is entirely poll driven.

The Soetoro regime AKA Valerie Jarrett has data pointing that the GOP would take a big hit in a shutdown. Moreover, such an event would take attention away from the Libyan fiasco and his other foreign relations disasters.

And if they can get the right spin, and the dumb republicans don’t stand up for themselves, she’ll be right.

Rebar on April 5, 2011 at 11:25 AM

If there’s a shutdown, what’s the damage Obama can do with Executive Orders?

conservative pilgrim on April 5, 2011 at 11:29 AM

The actual issues is:

“White House Needs Government Shut-Down To Inflate Obama’s Awful Re-election Campaign.”

Lourdes on April 5, 2011 at 11:30 AM

The actual issue is:

“White House Needs Government Shut-Down To Inflate Obama’s Awful Re-election Campaign.”

Lourdes on April 5, 2011 at 11:30 AM

Lourdes on April 5, 2011 at 11:30 AM

I love the attempt to sow fear… if the gubment shuts down

“citizens will have difficulty getting answers to any questions about Social Security benefits or Veterans’ benefits.”

Now that’s funny….

krl on April 5, 2011 at 11:30 AM

If there’s a shutdown, what’s the damage Obama can do with Executive Orders?

conservative pilgrim on April 5, 2011 at 11:29 AM

And he’s really counting on doing the damage just as he is relying on shutting-down the works to do so.

Lourdes on April 5, 2011 at 11:31 AM

Our problem here is that even democratics and the democratic media are prodding the Bamster and saying -”where’s the leadership?”

When you do that with someone as stupid and incompetent as little Bammie, the result will be more harmful than if he simply does nothing.

slickwillie2001 on April 5, 2011 at 11:31 AM

And if they can get the right spin, and the dumb republicans don’t stand up for themselves, she’ll be right.

Rebar on April 5, 2011 at 11:25 AM

F the GOP. Palin will destroy that myth.
What ever happened to the Gray Panthers? Can I bring it back? I can intimidate voters by whacking them with my cane. Holder said it’s OK. Right?

katy the mean old lady on April 5, 2011 at 11:32 AM

Boehner needs to look Obama in the eyes and inform him that should there be a government shut-down, Moose-chelle’s “servants” are non-essential personnel and will be furloughed. Also, the presidential limo and convoy will be parked, therefore this weekend’s golf game has been cancelled along with all the parties that Moose-chelle and company have planned.

brdchris1 on April 5, 2011 at 11:33 AM

The last thing Obama thinks about at bed-time is that darned ole shut-down thing and the first thing he thinks about when he wakes up is that shut-down thing.

Lourdes on April 5, 2011 at 11:33 AM

Unfortunately, the only thing that did was give me an inferiority complex.

Cindy Munford on April 5, 2011 at 11:22 AM

How so? Maybe Boehner and crew really are smarter than the average Donk. :)

AH_C on April 5, 2011 at 11:34 AM


What do you call 100 politicians in the bottom of the Atlantic?

A good start. Not enough.

shick on April 5, 2011 at 10:59 AM

Colbyjack on April 5, 2011 at 11:36 AM

Git’er done! Shut’er down! Long overdue.

ultracon on April 5, 2011 at 11:39 AM

The reason The Left are so concerned is that shutting down the Federal government won’t make a hill of beans difference in your life. THAT IS WHY THEY ARE SCARED OF IT.

SouthernGent on April 5, 2011 at 11:06 AM

But my God man! Who will recycle the Rhino poop? Oh the humanity!

SittingDeadRed on April 5, 2011 at 11:39 AM

Obama is acting like a ostrich giraffe on the budget, with his head stuck in the sand clouds.

Ignorance Arrogance is bliss.

Christien on April 5, 2011 at 11:47 AM

AH_C on April 5, 2011 at 11:34 AM

Too much inside baseball for me. Not a criticism of them but of my own lack of knowledge. With apologizes to Paterrico, there are far too many lawyers in the world.

Cindy Munford on April 5, 2011 at 11:47 AM

But my God man! Who will recycle the Rhino poop? Oh the humanity!

SittingDeadRed on April 5, 2011 at 11:39 AM

As I suggested a few weeks ago, when this first came up, hire “scabs” to deliver the offending matter to Capitol Hill and deposit it in Minority Leader Pelosi’s office since she was the one who insisted on “greening” the Capitol during her time in power.

teke184 on April 5, 2011 at 11:49 AM

If we do get a government shutdown, we must all remember that whenever it is being talked about we say “The republican controlled house has passed the budget. Too bad the democrats in the senate choose not to.”

When the leftists complain about what is being cut say, “Well if the democrats had passed the budget before the midterms, when they had full control in both houses, like they were supposed to, we wouldn’t be having this discussion now would we.”

Slowburn on April 5, 2011 at 11:56 AM

This, is, last, year’s, budget…
Spin that tidbit Liberals…

mjbrooks3 on April 5, 2011 at 10:28 AM

Exactly! If the government is shut down and the Republicans don’t completely cram this fact down the throats of the Dems & the President, then we are truly doomed.

Simply stated, the Democrats when they had complete control of the House, Senate and Presidency refused to pass a budget for Fiscal Year 2011. They passed this obligation on to the current congress who now must take action.

I hope the Dems and the President choke on their own bile for their failure to lead!!

glennbo on April 5, 2011 at 12:03 PM

This, is, last, year’s, budget…
Spin that tidbit Liberals…

mjbrooks3 on April 5, 2011 at 10:28 AM

Why not??? Every time President Pantload trots out the good old ‘Inherited Deficit’ horse$hit, every one seems to forget that the Demotards have controlled congress since 2006.

BigWyo on April 5, 2011 at 12:06 PM

Someone needs to tell BHO that the golf course at Andrews Air Force Base will be shut down as well…

THAT will get his attention…

Khun Joe on April 5, 2011 at 12:12 PM

This, is, last, year’s, budget…
Spin that tidbit Liberals…

mjbrooks3 on April 5, 2011 at 10:28 AM

Why not??? Every time President Pantload trots out the good old ‘Inherited Deficit’ horse$hit, every one seems to forget that the Demotards have controlled congress since 2006.

BigWyo on April 5, 2011 at 12:06 PM

Exactly, BigWyo. And it’s the Democrat-Senate majority who is addicted to deficit-spending and who continues to wage havoc on attempts by the GOP to change that.

Lourdes on April 5, 2011 at 12:15 PM

Someone needs to tell BHO that the golf course at Andrews Air Force Base will be shut down as well…

THAT will get his attention…

Khun Joe on April 5, 2011 at 12:12 PM

hehe.

AH_C on April 5, 2011 at 12:49 PM

May the media suffocate from all the manure they dwell in.

Schadenfreude on April 5, 2011 at 3:27 PM

Belgium’s government has been shut down for a year already. You wouldn’t even notice it to visit there. They even have two jets engaged in “peace strikes” in Libya.

crosspatch on April 5, 2011 at 3:47 PM

Fire every member of Congress and absolutely everyone in th Executive branch. None of them get paid of they can’t manage to do the one thing they are hired to do. I have zero patience for this crap. Pass a damned budget and stop playing games with people’s lives. If you can’t you are fired. End of line

BrideOfRove on April 5, 2011 at 4:15 PM

I wouldn’t worry – I’m sure Michelle canned all of that produce from the White House kitchen garden. She and Barry & Co should be able to survive for a few weeks.

disa on April 5, 2011 at 7:53 PM