Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) on Monday became the first Senate Republican to say he wouldn't vote for any more short-term spending bills to keep the government running while bitter negotiations continue on a larger budget for the rest of the fiscal year. The House and Senate must pass a new spending bill this week to avoid a government shutdown. A three-week stop-gap bill, that includes $6 billion in cuts, is being debated, but that may not be enough. "Running our government on the fumes of borrowed spending is unacceptable, short-sighted, and dangerous," says the Tea Party-endorsed Rubio at RedState.com. Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) promptly tweeted his support. Is this the beginning of a Tea Party insurrection that will shut down the government? (Listen to Rubio discuss the budget)
Yes, Rubio could start a revolt: "Rubio's frustration isn't isolated," says Chris Moody at The Daily Caller. "Members from both parties have criticized the use of stop-gap measures to fund the government." The House and Senate have to act fast to "buy more time" for negotiations before the first stop-gap spending bill expires on Friday. And Rubio and Co. may stand in their way.
"Rubio: I'm done voting for short-term spending"
There may be a shutdown... but not yet: "Barring an unexpected turn of events," says Brian Beutler at Talking Points Memo, Congress will pass the bill to keep the government going another three weeks. Ultimately, it might take a "brief shutdown" to get both sides to realize they need to compromise on a longer-term budget. But "this is the minor leagues." The real fight comes when Congress starts debating the 2012 fiscal budget later this year, and Republicans resist raising the federal debt limit in a bid to "force even greater cuts."
"Congress expected to avert government shutdown — at least this week"
Rubio is all talk: The Florida Republican says he refuses to take part in "some absurd political theater," says Dave Nalle at Republican Liberty Caucus, but he's the one doing the acting here. He needs to do much, much more. The long-term budget he's demanding "only cuts $57 billion in spending, enormously less than is necessary." He's full of bluster, "but he and other Tea Party endorsees are unwilling to follow their big talk with meaningful action or creative solutions." Some revolution.
"Marco Rubio talks big but fails to deliver on Tea Party promises"
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- 10 things you need to know today: September 1, 2014
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- 11 scientific studies that will restore your faith in humanity
- 7 grammar rules you really should pay attention to
- Why the West should let Russia have eastern Ukraine
- The 10 best networking tips for people who hate networking
- Scottish independence is another financial crisis waiting to happen
- Why baseball is America's most dangerous spectator sport
- The elusive 'It factor' in presidential politics
- Why you should stop believing in evolution
Subscribe to the Week