Speed Reads

no shutdown please

Biden says no shutdown unless 'somebody decides to be totally erratic'

President Biden on Thursday dismissed any threat of a government shutdown, "assuring a plan with 'everything in place' was supported by a majority of Senate Republicans and Democrats," The Washington Post reports.

When asked by a reporter if there would be a shutdown on Friday, Biden, who had just engaged with Senate leaders directly, confidently answered "no," before calling the question "silly."

"Look, I don't believe that will happen," he continued. "We have everything in place to be able to make sure there is not a shutdown ... I spoke with [Minority Leader] Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), I spoke with [Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.)], there is a plan in place unless somebody decides to be totally erratic, and I don't think that will happen."

On Thursday, leaders announced they had struck a deal to fund the government into February of next year, a stopgap measure ahead of Friday's deadline but a solution nonetheless, the Post reports. The House is expected to vote on the bill Thursday afternoon, but the Senate remains "paralyzed by partisan bickering, as conservatives mounted a fresh political stand against the Biden administration's response to the coronavirus," writes the Post.

The country could enter a short-term shutdown this weekend if Congress does not send a bill to Biden's desk by the deadline.