Congressmen announce bipartisan shutdown plan
Local lawmakers in Washington are stepping up and offering a compromise to the ongoing government shutdown. The bipartisan group is proposing to House Democrat and Republican leaders that they fund the government but drop the medical device tax.
Republican Congressmen Charlie Dent and Mike Fitzpatrick are two of about 20 lawmakers on Capitol Hill hoping to pressure Congressional leadership to end the Uncle Sam shutdown.
"We're all tired of the brinksmanship and the showmanship and all the drama and the theatrics and we want to get on with the business of governing," explained Dent. " We have a responsibility to govern. We have to do better."
The group is touting a proposal they say is a compromise. It would repeal the medical device tax provision in the Affordable Care Act, and fund the government for six months at sequester levels.
"This is a proposal which I agree with, which has support from both parties, and have worked with both parties to put it forward," shared Fitzpatrick.
But in order for this bill to come before lawmakers, House Speaker John Boehner would have to move it to a vote. Right now it's unclear if that will happen.
"If we can get it on the floor and over to the Senate we believe we can reopen the doors of government," Fitzpatrick said.
To replace the funds the medical device tax would have brought in, the proposal would use money from a pension stabilization initiative that was already approved. Dent says leaders need to step up and find a way to re-open government. Which is what he is trying to do.
"I'm proud to stand here with all these members from both parties who are here to lead, who are here to break the impasse and really want to get something done," Dent added.
Besides needing Congressional leadership support for this proposal, President Obama has said he doesn't want to set a precedent where government funding is attached to other issues.
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