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A Brief History of the 2013 Government Shutdown

Now that the government shutdown is over (at least for now), we’re guaranteed to see a slew of think-pieces and look-backs on the near-month-long partisan battle that led to a government shutdown and took America to the edge of possibly defaulting.

With that in mind, and for posterity’s sake, here’s a brief (and hopefully handy) timeline of the 2013 government shutdown:

Sept. 20: The Republican-led House votes to keep government funded through Dec. 15, but only if the president agrees to defund the 2010 Affordable Care Act (better known as Obamacare).

Sept. 24-25: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) makes his 21-hour-long, “filibuster”-style speech, railing against Obamacare and advocating a shutdown unless the Democrats make the outlined compromises on the healthcare law. Watch the beginning of that below:

Sept. 27: The Democratic-led Senate rejects and removes the House-passed defunding of Obamacare; sends bill back to the House.

Sept. 29: GOP-led House changes its demands from defunding Obamacare to delaying the implementation of the law for one year and repealing its tax on medical devices.

Sept. 30: The Democratic-led Senate rejects that reworked House proposal. Bill returns to the House, who once again rework their demands. This time, instead of the Sept. 29th provisions, the House GOP asks that the president delay for one year Obamacare’s “individual mandate” to buy health insurance; and that the president require Congress and its staff to pay unsubsidized health insurance costs. The Senate rejects those provisions, and so…

Oct. 1: Commence (partial) government shutdown. 800,000 federal workers furloughed.

Oct. 2-9: Republican-led House begins approving bills to restart popular government programs, including the national parks and museums, National Institute of Health medical research, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Food and Drug Administration, and Head Start. The Democratic-led Senate and president either ignore or reject these bills, criticizing them as “piecemeal” governance and incentivizing the Republicans to keep the shutdown going longer.

Oct. 10: House Speaker John Boehner proposes a six-week debt limit extension with the compromise that Obama discuss spending cuts. House GOP leaders meet with the president at the White House, come to no agreement.

Oct. 11-14:A bipartisan group of senators work on a bill to reopen government and avoid default. While Boehner’s negotiations with the White House prove fruitless, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell begin their talks on extending the debt limit and reopening the federal government.

Oct. 15: After much talk that the House could vote on a new bill to end the shutdown and extend the debt limit, the proposal ultimately collapsed when Boehner asserted that he did not have enough votes to pass. The deal reopened government while requiring that Congress pay more for its own health insurance. Democrats refused to pass a bill with such concessions; and the more conservative wing of the GOP rejected the proposal, saying it didn’t go far enough to fight Obamacare.

Oct. 16 The Senate Majority and Minority Leaders announce they’ve come to a deal to temporarily halt the government shutdown until Jan. 15, 2014, and extend the debt limit until Feb. 7, 2014. The proposal passes through both the House and Senate shortly before midnight.

Oct. 17: President Obama signs the deal into law, shortly after midnight.

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