POLITICS: PennAve

Jay Carney: 'Absurd' to say Obama doesn't care about shutdown length

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Politics,White House,Debt Ceiling,PennAve,Government Shutdown,Meghashyam Mali,Jay Carney

White House press secretary Jay Carney on Friday pushed back at GOP charges that the Obama administration does not care how long the shutdown lasts.

“This is absurd. POTUS wants the shutdown to end NOW. Speaker can do that NOW by putting a clean CR to a vote,” tweeted Carney.

“We utterly disavow idea WH doesn't care when it ends. House should act now, no strings attached,” he added in a second tweet.

His comment came after Republican lawmakers on the fourth day of a federal government shutdown focused on a remark from an anonymous administration official, quoted as saying that the length of the shutdown “doesn’t really matter to us.”

"We are winning. … It doesn't really matter to us, " a senior administration official told the Wall Street Journal in an article published Friday, adding "because what matters is the end result."

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, also blasted the remark, saying “this isn't some damn game,” at a press conference on Friday.

Republicans are pressing President Obama to negotiate over a government funding bill. Obama, though, has said he expects Congress to pass a clean spending bill without measures delaying or defunding his healthcare reform law.

Obama has also refused to negotiate on the debt limit, which Treasury will hit on Oct. 17. Republicans want deeper spending cuts and entitlement reforms in exchange for raising the nation's borrowing limit.

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