Government Shutdown Blame Game

Texas Congressman Mac Thornberry gave Newschannel 6 a behind-the-scenes look at the "blame game" over the federal government shutdown.

He said stalled negotiations are divided along party-lines, and the Senate will not negotiate with the House.

"Not only are they not willing to compromise, they're not even willing to talk," said Thornberry. He said the Senate shot down the House's request for a conference between selected members to go over compromise options on Tuesday morning.

Thornberry adds the government shutdown is a "political calculation" by President Barack Obama and Democrats for their own gain.

"They think Republicans will get blamed for the shutdown and therefore, they don't want to do anything to prevent a shutdown," said Congressman Thornberry. "That's playing politics with the lives of a lot of people."

The President's Affordable Care Act is at the center of budget negotiations on Capitol Hill. While Thornberry says a government shutdown is "unfortunate and unnecessary," he believes changes must be made to the Affordable Care Act before Congress passes a budget.

"The Affordable Care Act is not ready to be implemented, so what we've said is to just delay it a year," said Thornberry about what he considers the most moderate of three budget options the House sent to the Senate. "Push it back, give yourself more time to get ready, so it's not such a mess when it comes out."

Congressman Thornberry said he does not know how long the government will be shutdown. "There has to be an end," he said. "I just don't know how it plays out."

Christina Myers