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U.S. government shutdown: What's next?

10/01/2013 08:33 EDT | Updated 01/23/2014 06:58 EST
As the partial U.S. government shutdown enters a second day, and with both Republicans and Democrats firmly entrenched in their positions, any movement from either party to break the spending impasse seems unlikely in the days ahead.

"It looks pretty bleak to me," Matthew Baum, professor of public policy at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy school of government, said in an interview.

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both sides are locked into a corner, with the Republicans continuing their demands to include anti-Obamacare

Possibly fearful of a political backlash, the Republican-dominated House has been attempting to pass bills to selectively fund the government to ensure services such as the national parks and veterans affairs remain open. But those efforts have been rebuffed by the Senate.

On Tuesday, House majority leader Eric Cantor staged a photo-op showing Republicans, ready to negotiate, sitting at a half-empty conference table.

“From the Republican side, they’re talking about Democratic intransigence. 

 many months we'veaskingcommittee ithink conference. And now one hour before the shutdown, suddenly you want a conference? Forget it. This is a stunt.'”

the law of land, they say, something settled by the results of the 2012 election and upheld by a conservative Supreme Court.

“The argument would go, if you give into blackmail, you’ll just get blackmailed more," Baum said. "From a tactical standpoint, anything that eases the pressure on the Republicans for the Democrats when they feel like they have the upper hand would be bad.”

But any damage to constituents caused by the shutdown in the current political climate, is unlikely, for the time being, to push the Democrats to capitulate, Baum said.

 those who aren't from red states and have to worry about being unseated in the next election may startsituation, if they continue to shoulder the blame.

"And there's where you might see a crack in the wall," Baum said.

"The only scenario I can see right now that could break this impasse is if the pressure on the non-Tea Party Republicans becomes too intense and they defect. I don’t really know how plausible that is. I know there’s a handful willing to speak and say, 'This is a bad idea what we’re doing.' Are there enough of them who would be wiling to break from the leadership, I don’t know."

But Baum added that if the crisis drags out long enough, "

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