Meet the Press   |  October 06, 2013

Who is at fault for the shutdown?

A Meet the Press roundtable discusses the Congressional stalemate over reaching an agreement on funding the government.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> we'll get to the rollout of obama care in a moment, but let's start with the government shutdown . nbc news put a tweet out this week, let congress know how it feels. let's take a look at the response.

>> dear congress, i would like you to go without pay for one month.

>> stop acting in your own self-interest. get your act together and do what's right for the country.

>> i hope to god in next year's election, all of you are booted out.

>> congresswoman fudge, aren't you the lucky one to be the city member at this table. no matter who gets the blame here ultimately, whether people blame the republicans or the democrats, in the end is it just bad for the institution? is it on awful yoll of your houses?

>> yes, it is. there are no winners here. when you talk about shutting down the government and all the stuff that goes around about who is at fault and who is not, and how we should have a clean cr, let me say it is our responsibility to fund the government of the united states and we should not let anyone to extract a ransom for any of us to do our jobs.

>> let's turn to mike murphy , republican strategist. two-thirds of the country don't like the tactic of shutting down the government. even if they don't like obama care, they don't like this tactic.

>> that's the problem. i think we should go back to the problem of the computer sites, because what we have is a perfect storm here. you have the cynics who run the democratic party and you take the stupid wing of the gop. instead somehow a monkey wrench got thrown into the system, and now everybody hates congress and republicans are taking the bigger political hit. i saw a poll where the approval rating of the u.s. congress was 5% and the margin barrier was 6.

>> mitch, do you think it was a miscalculation for people to take a stand in this way with a shutdown?

>> everybody knew we were going to have a confrontation in the fall over the continuing resolution over the debt limit. it's true the hand of the house of the gop was forced in this rank and file . this is not how they would set up this fight. they would have gone to the debt limit right away. now they're in this fight. it's going to segue into the debt limit, and the caucus is united, and they wanted to hold firm until harry reid and president obama are actually willing to negotiate, which is how these kinds of disputes are always settled.

>> is the house conference united, steve?

>> no, no, when i talk to republicans , there is incredible diversity of opinion, and i think when you try to decide who is to blame for this shutdown, you can say the republicans wanted it. i think that's unfair. i think it's fair to say some of the republicans misjudged their opponents. they assumed the democrats would cave. they were wrong. when i talk to republicans , the republican who, to me, seems to have the best notion of what is on the democrats' mind, believe it or not, is grover norquist , gave a fascinating interview to the " washington post " in which he said, the way to deal with this is get past, in some short-term way, perhaps, however you have to, both the budget ceiling and this debt problem in the shutdown, and push the democrats instead on the sequestration, the really deep budget cuts, and they're you're touching something the democrats are really bothered by, that they might be willing to give something to the republicans to get out of this.

>> but the republicans ' stance is, i won't negotiate. even if there is a host of reasons why that is a responsible position, as a bumper sticker, it's not the greatest, is it? we're about to have calamity, but i'm not negotiating?

>> it is our job to fund the government. i would say to those people who believe it is appropriate to say, oh, we're not going to pass a continuing resolution , a clean bill, because we want the president to negotiate. the president has already offered to negotiate on obama care. he has said, if you bring me ideas, i'm willing to accept them. this is not the point at which we then take hostages and say, oh, you know, if you don't change obama care, we're not going forward. we pass continuing resolutions eight times.