Bush budget chief: Republicans 'don't have a plan' for showdown

A former budget director for President George W. Bush excoriated fellow Republicans on Tuesday, saying they lack a sound strategy to both fund the government and raise the nation's debt ceiling. 

Jim Nussle, a longtime former congressman from Iowa who served as director of the Office of Management and Budget from 2007-09, sharply criticized his former GOP colleagues on Capitol Hill. 

Nussle's comments serve as a stark reminder of the lack of Republican unanimity over the strategy sought by some conservatives, to use needed deadlines to extend government spending and authorized increased government borrowing as leverage to undermine President Barack Obama's health care law. 

"The difference between this government shutdown, if you will, or this brinksmanship is that, in the past, Republicans had a plan. There was something hanging in the balance -- there was welfare reform, there was a five-year budget to get us back to balance ... There's nothing here, and that's what's so frustrating," Nussle said on CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Tuesday morning.

"What do the elected Republicans have as a plan to put forward right now? That's what's so frustrating to me," the former congressman added. "Seriously, they don't have a plan."