As millions of Americans await the vote of the U.S. Senate as to whether the country will face a government shutdown, Montana Senator Steve Daines spoke with reporters late Friday afternoon from his office in Washington, D.C.

“Here’s where we are right now,” said Daines. “The House has passed an agreement to keep the lights on and fund children’s health insurance. The President has said he will sign this agreement to keep the lights on and fund children’s health insurance. Now it’s up to this body.”

Montana’s senior Senator, Jon Tester, has already stated that he will not join Daines and the Republicans in voting for the resolution.

“This budget should have been passed and gone into effect in September,” said Tester, on the senate floor earlier Friday. “If you really want to talk about the hypocrisy of this body, and there’s plenty of it, the fact that we’ve got to hurry up and fund CHIP, when it ran out of money back in September.”

Senator Daines opened his comments by stating that the overall budget process is broken.

“Nobody likes CR’s (Continuing Resolutions),” he said. “We are now three and a half months into the fiscal year without having a budget or spending plan in place. It reminds me of ‘lather-rinse-repeat’, and it’s frustrating for Congress as well as the American people. But, we have to face reality that in a matter of a few hours, we’re headed for a government shutdown.”

Daines called on Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer to not use full funding of the DACA program as the tipping point of a government shutdown.

“Our friends across the aisle are insisting that the DACA issue gets resolved in the next six hours, that is what’s stopping all this,” he said. “I understand it’s an important issue, but we have until March 5th until the extension that President Trump laid out expires. The House has passed a bill, the President has said he will sign it, but we need 60 senators to vote for it, according to the rules of the Senate,”




More From KMPT-AM