AZ leaders weigh in on budget fray; thousands affected - WDAM - TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports

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AZ leaders weigh in on budget fray; thousands affected

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PHOENIX (CBS5/AP) -

President Barack Obama urged House Republicans to prevent a midnight shutdown of the federal government.

The GOP demanded that the implementation of the Affordable Care Act be delayed for a year in exchange for passing the budget. The president called that demand a ransom in exchange for them doing their job.

Obama warned that failing to act by midnight could "throw a wrench into the gears" of a recovering economy.

The government shutdown will affect thousands of Arizonans, including those who planned to travel to the Grand Canyon or who planned on renewing a passport. Those hoping to buy a home would also be affected.

"It's going to affect every single person who has an FHA loan, VA loan or conventional loan or for that matter any mortgage loan," explained Jeremy Schachter, a mortgage adviser with Pinnacle Capital. 

He said that's because the IRS is not operating, and credit agencies must verify social security numbers and income with the agency to approve loans.

"The only way for them to verify the income is true and correct is to get it from the IRS and government. And that is going to get delayed," he continued. 

Throughout the Valley and Arizona, leaders reacted to the shutdown.

Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton said on Monday the inability of members of Congress to reach a budget deal "is yet another example of how Washington's 'culture of gridlock' trumps doing what is right for the American people."  

"This is a perfect example of why people are so frustrated with politics, and why they continue to lose faith in Congress' ability to get the job done. Partisan politics should never get in the way of good faith negotiation and compromise, but that has become a matter of course for those in Washington. A government shutdown hurts real people - and it is time to stop hurting real people because politicians won't do their job," Stanton said.

Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) emailed her reaction to the showdown:

"Government shutdown is irresponsible; it jeopardizes Arizona's economic recovery and puts the well-deserved benefits of too many Americans at risk. More than 55,000 Arizonans may be affected by uncertainty resulting from shutdown. Disruptions in veterans' services, public safety, tourism, defense and other government responsibilities are likely. This is no way to run a country.

"Sadly, too many in Congress have spent the last nine months fighting instead of working together to fix the budget. While I've demonstrated that I work with anyone with a good idea to move our nation forward, I'm not going to let a few extremists hijack our government.

"On Saturday evening, I voted against the House Republican amendment to delay the implementation of the Affordable Care Act.

"Tonight, I voted to ensure that families can still sign up for affordable healthcare plans without being punished for failing to purchase 'adequate' healthcare coverage. It's now been proven that too many states are not ready to implement the marketplaces. It's not fair to punish people who don't have the information they need to make informed decisions. Arizona's hard-working families need transparency and certainty about this healthcare law and its implementation. A one-year delay of the individual mandate will ensure that Arizonans get that certainty."

"Additionally, I supported tonight's amendment because Members of Congress should not ask the government to pay for their healthcare while Americans at home suffer during government shutdown."

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer issued this statement Monday afternoon:

"The looming threat of a federal government shutdown reflects the very serious failure of leadership that exists today in Washington. If a federal shutdown does occur, it will have an unnecessary and negative impact on services aimed to assist Arizona's vulnerable.

"My office continues to work with state agencies to ensure that the effects of a potential shutdown are minimal. However, the state cannot afford to bailout the federal government. President Obama, Senator Reid and Speaker Boehner owe it to the American people to work together to fund its obligations and avoid a shutdown."

U.S. Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) said:

"The Senate shouldn't run out the clock on the American people with inaction and extreme partisanship. The American people expect Senate Democrats to work with the House and put aside the extremist ideology some Senate Democrats are engaging in. The public doesn't deserve the government shutdown the Democrats threaten, nor is it fair that individuals not be exempted from the impact of Obamacare. It's time for the Democrat-led Senate to listen to the American people and stop playing politics. The House did its job, now it's up to the Senate to pass this bill and stop a government shutdown."

U.S. Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ) said:

"Congress needs to learn that brinksmanship is not leadership. A government shutdown is bad for the national economy and our local economy in Arizona. This may be a manufactured crisis, but it will hurt real people. I represent a mostly rural district with plenty of federal land and natural resources. So folks in District One are employed at our national parks and forests. They are workers at agencies like BLM and Interior. They staff our VA clinics and the Indian Health Service, and they are civil servants for the Defense Department. For the sake of working families everywhere, the House GOP needs to stop playing partisan games and pass a clean, stopgap bill. We need to keep the government running and protect our economy."

The Dow fell 128 points on Monday amid little evidence that the Democratic-controlled Senate and Republican-led House were any closer to a budget agreement.

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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