Nightly News | April 05, 2011
>>> good evening. tonight, no one can say for sure whether the federal government will shut down by the end of this week. if that happens, money stops flowing, and if that happens, americans will start feeling it by monday. and while a lot of it can be attributed to politics as usual in washington, there are real disagreements behind this. the threat of a shutdown is real, and the republicans say so is what they prosed today for future years, starting in 2012 . massive cuts in spending. and while none of that is real yet, it's already getting fought over as the clock ticks down to this weekend's potential shutdown. we have two reports on all of this tonight. we want to begin with nbc news chief white house correspondent chuck todd . chuck, good evening.
>> reporter: good evening, brian. well, look, that government shutdown grew more likely today as house republicans and the white house failed to agree on a budget for this year. it's an ongoing fight over a mere .83% of all government spending . a visibly frustrated president turned up the health on congressional leaders, who have put off adopting a budget since last year.
>> if that issue does not get resolved and we don't start seeing progress, i want a meeting again tomorrow here at the white house . and if that doesn't work, we'll invite them again the day after that.
>> reporter: the president warned the fragile economic recovery is at stake.
>> we're just starting to see a pickup in employment. the last thing we need is a disruption that's caused by a government shutdown .
>> reporter: congress has kept the government going through a series of temporary measures. but now the white house and republicans can't even agree on doing that.
>> i hope the republicans do what the country needs, not what they believe the tea party wants.
>> we're not going to allow the senate, nor the white house to put us in a box where we have to make a choice between two bad options.
>> reporter: it's been 15 years since the last government shutdown , when 800,000 federal employees were told to stay home. so what could happen friday if the current funding agreement isn't extended? government employees deemed non-essential would be furloughed. as a result, museums and all national parks will close. social security applications would be delayed. but checks would still be mailed. and passports and visas wouldn't be processed. but vital services would continue, including air traffic controllers , airport screeners , and the thousands of u.s. troops fighting overseas. and with tax day less than two weeks away, the irs says americans still must file on time, but refunds could be delayed. if the government did shut down, a recent pew research poll shows americans evenly divided on which party to blame. but some senate republicans want to force a deal now because they fear a shutdown will hurt their party more. chuck todd , nbc news, the white house .