House freshmen call on Reid to lead to avoid shutdown

Rep. Steve Womack (R-Ark.) said Republicans do not want a shutdown but do want spending cuts, and said Democrats are ignoring the need for cuts.

"The message from the electorate is simple: Live within your means," he said. He added that Congress has kicked the fiscal 2011 budget so far down the road, Congress has a "chronic case of turf toe."

Democrats mostly used morning floor time to protest about the Republicans' fiscal 2012 budget, although Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.) said the fight over the 2011 budget is over Republican social policy goals.

"It is not about balancing the budget, it is not about anything else except getting poor people," he said.

Rep. Lynn Woolsey (D-Calif.) suggested that current spending cuts could be achieved by ending U.S. military action in Afghanistan.

"You want to eliminate wasteful government spending?" she asked. "I say the war in Afghanistan could be No. 1 on our list."

Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) and Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.) focused exclusively on the 2012 budget in their morning comments, and warned that Republicans want to end Medicare in their next budget.