The U.S. government is bracing for its first shutdown in 17 years, with both Democrats and Republicans refusing to budge on funding provisions for the Affordable Health Care Act. The Washington Post reported on Monday that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has vowed to reject a funding bill approved by the House early on Sunday because it will delay Obama's health care law for one year. Members of the Republican Party are refusing to accept any legislation that will keep Obamacare funded and on schedule for the planned October 1 start date, even if that comes at the expense of keeping the government fully functional.
According to a report from The Huffington Post, House Republicans are crediting the imminent shutdown and Congressional standoff to Senator Ted Cruz. Cruz has been adamant from the beginning that he would do all that he could to prevent funding for the Affordable Health Care Act from going through, even going so far as to recite "Green Eggs and Ham" during a filibuster on the Senate floor last week. Representative Tom Cole of Oklahoma told reporters that "I think he's played a lot of role in where we are right now."
Republican Party leaders held a closed-door meeting on Saturday afternoon, organizing a plan to advance a bill that would keep the government funded beyond September 30 in exchange for delaying Obamacare for another year. Despite Senator Reid declaring the proposal dead on arrival, Republicans were celebratory following the meeting, crediting Ted Cruz for unifying the GOP leadership.
Other Republican leaders have denied that Cruz is fully responsible for the party coming together, however, saying that the party was motivated by the "dangers of Obamacare" instead.