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Ohio Lawmakers Weigh In On Looming Government Shutdown

With a possible government shutdown now just a day away, federal lawmakers from Ohio Thursday offered a look into the partisan budget battle. Speaking on WOSU's All Sides, Republican Representative Pat Tiberi and Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown echoed many of the same arguments heard in Washington lately. Democrats have criticized for Republicans for stalemating and trying to force a shutdown, and they've lashed out at the GOP for continually asking for more cuts. But Tiberi says they're against this deadline because the Senate hasn't passed a spending plan. "They threw out a number, $33 billion (in proposed cuts), but that doesn't mean anything. There aren't any cuts," Tiberi says. "How do we negotiate a bill with a Senate that hasn't passed anything?" Brown deflected that back at Tiberi and the GOP, saying Democrats tried to pass a budget last fall but were blocked by Republicans. "We had a majority, but did not have 60 votes, and (the GOP) said they're not going along. All of this is a result of that." Tiberi didn't want to answer questions about a specific amount of spending cuts he'd like to see. Brown said take it up to $100 billion, but cut more than just programs for the poor. "We'll do a $100 billion deficit reduction, but part of it's going to be a millionaire surtax, part of it's going to be cuts in defense spending, part of it's going to be eliminating oil subsidies," Brown says. Tiberi said he supports closing tax loop holes for corporations that sometimes don't pay taxes at all. He also praised the President for, in his words, "finally getting serious in the last 24 hours about not letting the government shut down."