WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) – Rep. Rick Nolan introduced legislation Wednesday that, if approved, would ensure that members of Congress would not be paid during the government shutdown.
The Minnesota Democrat posted about the proposal, called the “No Government – No Pay Act,” on his own website.
“It’s time for Congress to start living in the real world – where you either do your job, or you don’t get paid,” Nolan said in the statement. “The American people sent this Congress to Washington to use common sense – to collaborate, compromise, solve problems and govern – not to shut down the federal government.”
The law would dictate that government officials “must work around the clock without pay to resolve a budget crisis” if a shutdown occurs.
President Barack Obama brought congressional leaders to the White House on Wednesday for the first time since a partial government shutdown began, but there was no sign of progress toward ending an impasse that has idled 800,000 federal workers and curbed services around the country.
The standoff continued after a White House summit with chief executives as financial leaders and Wall street urged a resolution before serious damage is done to the U.S. and world economy.
Obama “refuses to negotiate,” House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio., told reporters after private talks that lasted more than an hour. “All we’re asking for here is a discussion and fairness for the American people under Obamacare.”
But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada said moments later, “We’re locked in tight on Obamacare” and neither the president nor Democrats will accept changes in the nation’s 3-year-old health care law known formally as the Affordable Care Act as the price for spending legislation needed to end the two-day partial shutdown.
The White House said in a statement after the meeting that Obama had made it clear “he is not going to negotiate over the need for Congress to act to reopen the government or to raise the debt limit to pay the bills Congress has already incurred.”
It added, “The president remains hopeful that common sense will prevail.”
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