Senate Rejects House Proposal to Fund Government

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J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nev., accompanied by aide Adam Jentleson, walks to a Democratic caucus on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, Sept. 30, 2013.

Nine-and-a-half hours before the government funding deadline, the Senate voted 54 to 46 Monday to reject the House government-funding proposal, which would have delayed Obamacare funding for a year and repealed the medical device tax.

The vote was a foregone conclusion made on party lines, as the health care law is widely viewed as non-negotiable by the President and Democrat-controlled Senate. A partial government shutdown will occur at midnight tonight unless the House and Senate can now compromise. As many as 800,000 of the nation’s 2.1 million federal workers could be furloughed.

For some, at least, the only thing left to do was pray. “Eternal God, our ever present help in trouble, as our nation stumbles toward a seemingly unavoidable government shutdown, keep our lawmakers from sowing to the wind, thereby risking reaping the whirlwind,” prayed the Senate chaplain Barry C. Black on the floor before the vote. “Remember that all that is necessary for unintended catastrophic consequences is for good people to do nothing.”