WASHINGTON - The White House vowed Thursday thatPresident Obama will veto a GOP effort to defund his signature healthcare law, as Speaker John Boehner said the House is on track to gut itas part of a stopgap measure to fund the government.
President Obama will not sign the bill funding the government through Dec. 15 because "itadvances a narrow ideological agenda that threatens our economy and theinterests of the middle class," according to a statement from theOffice of Management and Budget.
In its present form, the spending bill is unlikely to ever reach Obama's desk.
The measure includesa provision pushed by conservatives to strip funding for the law theyderide as "Obamacare," which has no chance of passage in theDemocratic-controlled Senate. The legislation also would prioritize debtpayments if Congress doesn't raise the nation's borrowing authority bymid-October.
Boehner said the House vote coming Friday willput the burden on the Senate. If the dispute over the funding billcannot be resolved by the end of the month, the government faces ashutdown on Oct. 1.
"We're going to win the fight over here,"Boehner said, pushing the fight over the stopgap spending measure andObama's health care law to the Senate. "It's time for them to pick upthe mantle and get the job done."
While Boehner has saidRepublicans do not want to shut down the government, their goal is toget Democrats to agree to more budget cuts and other fiscal changes. Thevote Friday is a prelude to a larger battle over raising the debtceiling that is just a few weeks away.
The "president needs to recognize that we've got a shared responsibility to govern," Boehner said.
Democratscriticized House Republicans for brinksmanship politics. House MinorityLeader Nancy Pelosi called her House GOP colleagues "legislativearsonists," while Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid labeled them"anarchists."
At the White House, spokesman JayCarney said it is "unconscionable" for the GOP to risk governmentdefault over a health care law passed by Congress and upheld by theSupreme Court.
"We've had this battle," Carney said.
TreasurySecretary Jack Lew cautioned this week that waiting until the eleventhhour to raise the debt ceiling "could be very dangerous" and warnedCongress not to "gamble with the full faith and credit of the UnitedStates of America."