SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (IRN) — U.S. Rep. John Shimkus (R-Collinsville) says he doesn’t want a government shutdown.
“I think we on both sides did all we could to avert that and our goal is not to shut down the government,” said Shimkus. “But our goal is to get some spending cuts. By moving to spend less, then we can figure out, ‘why do we have so many duplications in federal government programs?’ and get them down to a manageable size.”
Congress avoided a shutdown last week by passing a two-week spending extension that includes $4 billion in cuts. The extension lasts until March 18.
Those cuts come from discretionary spending, something Shimkus says will see shrinking dollars if something isn’t done about entitlement programs such as Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security.
“When we address our budget…we’re going to touch the holy grails. We’re going to address Medicare and we’re going to address Social Security,” said Shimkus. “It’s not going to be popular. But the public has to understand, if we don’t do that, then there’s no discretionary spending.”
A shutdown is imminent if Congress doesn’t act. They can pass another short-term spending extension, or work out a deal that would provide a plan until October – something that’s been more difficult to pass both chambers as Republicans call for $60 billion in more cuts.
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