White House warns GOP on spending bills

Dec. 2, 2011 at 3:49 PM
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WASHINGTON, Dec. 2 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama's budget director warned Republicans in Congress Friday they need to approve an appropriations package Obama is willing to sign.

Jack Lew, at a meeting with reporters, said the president will not sign anything with riders designed to negate his policies, Politico reported. He said there could be a government shutdown Dec. 16 if Congress does not act quickly.

"I hope that Congress makes the decision to get the work done, do it in a way that the president can sign and not to kind of flirt with the disaster scenario and the risk of government shutdown," Lew said. "The president is quite insistent and will not sign a bill that doesn't meet the standards that he has laid out."

Obama has become more aggressive in his approach to the Republican majority in the House of Representatives. In the summer, he was criticized for giving too much away.

"I don't think it's in the interest of the country to have an unnecessary crisis but it's also not in the interest of the country to allow an appropriations bill to become a vehicle for doing things that are harmful to the country and which don't belong on an appropriations bill," Lew said.

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