The looming shutdown

Bill Ritter's daily take on the news.

September 30, 2013 1:56:12 PM PDT
Will the government shut down at midnight?

The budget battle in Washington now facing a deadline, and the looming prospect that hundreds of thousands of federal workers will be forced off the job for as long as Republican-controlled House and the Democrat-controlled Senate can't reach an agreement over whether to fund, or not, so-called Obamacare.

A spitting match between skunks. That's how many Americans think of the political battle now underway in Washington. But the stakes are high, and - no matter what side you're on - it's clear that a small number of conservatives are standing their ground and forcing this issue. They have a perspective on defunding Obamacare that trumps just about everything else.

The hard truth about this health care reform is that, one way or the other, the 40 million or so Americans who don't, or didn't, have health insurance, were getting subsidized by everyone else. They used emergency rooms as their health care venue of first resort, and when they didn't have money to pay for services, taxpayers paid the bills.

So now those people will be required to get insurance. It may be expensive, but it wouldn't have been so expensive if Washington had made the government one of the funding sources for those who couldn't afford to pay for private insurance. I'm just sayin'.

Jim Dolan tonight takes a look at the showdown over the shutdown.

And if you notice many on-air peeps wearing pink tomorrow, that's because we're part of the "ABC News Goes Pink" day, to help folks better understand breast cancer and its risks, as well as shining a light on the medical research and options for preventing, detecting and treating this disease.

The stats are dramatic: About 1 in 8 American women will be diagnosed with breast cancer over their lifetime. This year that means nearly a quarter of a million women. We are all affected.

We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Meteorologist Lee Goldberg's AccuWeather forecast, and Laura Behnke (in for Rob Powers) with the night's sports. I hope you can join Sade Baderinwa and me, tonight at 11, right after 20/20.


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