A spokesman for House Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio said the Goldman Sachs report represented "the same outdated Washington mind-set," comparing it to the thinking behind the 2009 Recovery Act that released federal funds to counter the effects of the recession.
But Democrats seized on the report as a validation of their arguments against the Republican cuts.
"Just as the economy is beginning to pick up a little steam, the Republican budget would snuff out any chance of recovery," said Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.).
Congressional Democrats and Republicans are near deadlock on the spending issue, with their positions hardening this week.
Democrats have rejected the $61 billion in reductions, which would affect every state and virtually every domestic aspect of federal government operations, as too severe. Instead, they have proposed a temporary spending freeze as they negotiate deeper cuts.
Congress must pass a spending bill by March 4, when a stop-gap funding measure expires, to avoid a shutdown. But House Republican leaders are under pressure from their conservative base not to give in.
And it's Orange Julius's lack of leadership that Jonathan Bernstein says will assure a long-term government shutdown.
But, when it comes to the policy fights over health care reform, environmental regulations, Planned Parenthood, and other issues, there aren’t partial victories available. Democrats won’t give in, and House Republicans won’t either, at least not easily. To take just one example: If you’re a Republican congressman, once you’ve said that allowing funds to go to Planned Parenthood is basically just funding abortion (even if it’s not), how do you reconcile a “yes” vote on a compromise bill that allows funding for that organization? (Indeed, will strongly pro-life members of Congress even be willing to vote for a two-week extension if it fails to prohibit Planned Parenthood funding?)
Boehner had the chance to make this battle about just spending levels. In that case, a shutdown could still have happened. But, instead, the speaker allowed the fight to become about so many policy issues that it’s hard to keep track of them all. He can neither win nor abandon the amendments he let pass, meaning an ugly shutdown is all but certain.
Republicans are literally willing to wreck the country in order to "win". And come a week from tomorrow, we'll all be losers.