>Daily Tax Update - October 9, 2013: Some Lawmakers See "Glimmer" of Hope to End Shutdown

Some Lawmakers See "Glimmer" of Hope to End Shutdown:  The White House plans to hold separate meetings today and tomorrow with Democrats and Republicans in an attempt to end the government shutdown.  A spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner said, “Nine days into a government shutdown and a week away from breaching the debt ceiling, a meeting is only worthwhile if it is focused on finding a solution.  It is our hope that this will be a constructive meeting and that the president finally recognizes Americans expect their leaders to be able to sit down and resolve their differences.”

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan floated a plan to end the shutdown.  Ryan’s two-part plan would lift the debt ceiling and reopen the government long enough for Congress to pass long-term entitlement reforms.  Ryan said, “Right now, we need to find common ground. . . .  We need to open the federal government.  We need to pay our bills today - and make sure we can pay our bills tomorrow.  So let's negotiate an agreement to make modest reforms to entitlement programs and the tax code.”

Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), the ranking Democrat on the House Budget Committee, said, “There could be a little glimmer here.  I think we're on a very risky trajectory right now, but I think there is a possible opening here.  But, again, it depends on if Republicans on the Hill are willing to jump on it."

Reid, Baucus Introduce Bill to Avoid Default:  Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) introduced legislation that would "avoid a catastrophic default on the United States’ bills and suspend the debt limit until December 31, 2014." 

Reid said, “Republicans and Democrats may have our differences, but we should not hold the full faith and credit of the United States hostage while we resolve them.”  Reid added,“Let’s reopen the government, let’s pay our bills and we’ll negotiate.  Sen. Baucus and I introduced this bill today, which will allow the United States to pay its debts, with no preconditions or strings attached.  I hope we can get Republican cooperation to move this bill quickly.  If not, the process could take us dangerously close to economic chaos.”