"We will not go to conference with a gun to our head," Reid said on the Senate floor. He spoke after the chamber had voted down a third attempt by House Republicans to derail Obamacare as a price for keeping the government open. TPM.com has more here.
Government Shutdown Puts One Million Workers on Unpaid Leave - The U.S. government began a partial shutdown on Tuesday for the first time in 17 years, potentially putting up to 1 million workers on unpaid leave, closing national parks and stalling medical research projects.
Federal agencies were directed to cut back services after lawmakers could not break a political stalemate that sparked new questions about the ability of a deeply divided Congress to perform its most basic functions. Reuters.com has more here.
Watch Jon Stewart on the Shutdown - As Stewart noted, the health care law was passed by both houses of Congress, signed by President Barack Obama and even upheld by the Supreme Court.
"So, everything appears to have been done literally by the book," Stewart said. "This bill is now a law vetted by the very system Republicans profess to love. But to hear the Republicans tell it, the whole thing could just be avoided if President Obama would meet them half-way."
Exchanges Open Today as The Affordable Care Act Moves Forward - The cornerstone of ObamaCare — the new insurance marketplaces at the heart of the debate over a government shutdown — opens for business on Tuesday.
The rollout of America’s new healthcare system is a pivotal moment for both President Obama and his Republican critics, and that’s a core reason why it has brought the federal government to a grinding halt.
Obama on Monday said, “The Affordable Care Act is moving forward. That funding is already in place. You can’t shut it down.”
“Shutdown or no shutdown, we’re ready to go,” Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told reporters Monday.
The new marketplaces, also known as exchanges, officially open at 8 a.m. in most states. TheHill.com has more here.
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