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Congress: Shutdown averted

“By engaging in a protracted, often ugly partisan fight with Democrats, Boehner not only demonstrated to his Conference his commitment to spending cuts and showed his zeal for imposing conservative policies on the Obama administration, he illustrated with textbook clarity just how difficult it will be to implement a conservative agenda,” Roll Call reports. “When Boehner presented his Conference with a compromise spending bill late Friday night, Republicans largely hailed it as a success and lauded Boehner’s ability to force Democrats and the Obama administration into a historic discussion of how to cut spending. The agreement Boehner was able to cut is impressive — in addition to cutting spending by a total of $38.5 billion this year, he was able to force Democrats to accept a number of policy riders they had opposed.”

“As shutdown angst reigned across Capitol Hill on Friday, Congressional leaders worked behind closed doors while staffers and support employees, resigned to the fact that they had absolutely no role in averting a shutdown, consoled themselves with furlough humor,” Roll Call adds. “Notwithstanding the looming threat of losing pay and the dejection of being deemed nonessential, as clocks ticked toward the midnight deadline, work life went on as normally as possible.”

“Despite the tension and the glare of the media spotlight, the fledgling relationship between Boehner and Reid actually grew stronger over the last couple of months, according to sources close to both men,” The Hill reports. “That is important because the next political crisis of raising the nation’s debt ceiling is just around the corner.”

“House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s 2012 budget resolution, set to pass the House this week, may kill closed-door bipartisan negotiations in the Senate over a grand deficit bargain,” The Hill writes.