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GOP, defiant, blames Obama, Dems for potential shutdown

From NBC's Domenico Montanaro
Less than three days away from a government shutdown, House Republican leaders stood defiant today laying blame on President Obama and Democrats if the lights go out.

"The president isn't leading," House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) charged, noting first that he liked the president personally and that they "get along well."

He criticized the president for not implementing any of his own fiscal commission's recommendations in his budget.

And he upped the ante, saying House Republicans were prepared to go forward with a bold one-week continuing resolution that would cut a whopping $12 billion in spending but continue to fund the Pentagon through September.

The $12 billion figure is more than the last two continuing resolutions combined -- $6 billion for three weeks, $4 billion for two.

Boehner called it "our troop-funding bill."

This essentially means both sides are at square zero -- and they have two-and-a-half days to figure it out. Republicans set a rule that all bills would have to be reviewed for 72 hours before they are voted on. Congress is now within that window.

So the only ways a shutdown is averted is: (1) the conventional way: if the rule is suspended and both sides come up with a deal that is something less than $61 billion and more than the $10 billion that's already passed, which is possible; (2) if Democrats bite the bullet and vote for the $12 billion, one-week CR -- which seems highly unlikely; (3) if another one-week CR is passed with no changes to the budget or substantially less than $12 billion in cuts -- which isn't something it seems Republicans would agree to; (4) if a two-or-three-day CR is agreed to -- which seems it would be tough to pass in the House unless it, too, had substantial cuts.