Government shutdown looms as Biden convenes with congressional leaders

President Biden is set to convene with key congressional leaders on Tuesday amidst looming concerns of a potential partial government shutdown. With just a few days left to avert this scenario, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Speaker Mike Johnson, and House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries will join the president and vice president in the Oval Office to deliberate on strategies to ensure government operations extend beyond March 1. However, as the meeting approaches, reaching a consensus on the path forward seems elusive.

“While we’ve made some good progress on a number of fronts, unfortunately, our House Republican colleagues are still struggling to figure themselves out,” Schumer said on the Senate floor on Monday. “There’s a lot of uncertainty over how the House will proceed in the coming days.”

In the absence of a funding resolution or an extension of current funding provisions for the initial four out of twelve spending bills, a partial government shutdown is poised to commence on Saturday at 12 a.m. This would affect various federal agencies, ranging from the Department of Veterans Affairs to the Food and Drug Administration. Subsequently, the second deadline looms a week later, coinciding with the expiration of funding for the majority of government operations.

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