Government shutdown and Planned Parenthood: Take the carbon emissions, leave the pap smears

John Boehner's tanning beds, as an "essential service," will still be operational during the shutdown.

So, the government might shut down tonight at midnight. Awesome! "Mad Max"-style anarchy, coming our way! (Metro is looking for challengers who want to fight us in the Thunderdome, as we speak!)

The basic issues are these: Congressional Democrats say that they and the Republicans are close to a budget numerically, but that negotiations have been held up by social issues, namely sexual health and environmental regulation. The GOP has indicated it wants to devolve federal government’s support of Planned Parenthood to the state level, where legislatures can decide which kind of "women’s health" they want to fund. (As Jezebel points out, this would not be good.) Republicans also want to restrict the EPA’s authority to regulate carbon emissions, because, hey, why not?

(It should also be noted here, of course, that Democrats have also implemented social policy changes through spending bills, though they say that they’ve never done it with a shutdown hanging over everyone’s heads.)

So here’s where we stand now:

»Legislators in both houses of Congress are fighting a PR battle in the wake of news that — unlike many other federal employees — they will continue to be paid during the shutdown that they caused. Already House Speaker John Boehner is saying he’ll forgo his paycheck, and NBC News’ Luke Russert is leading a Twitter campaign for voters to convince their Senators and representatives to do the same.

»Meanwhile, both parties continue to blame each other. (Shocking, we know.) Harry Reid is blaming the Tea Party and their "extreme social agenda," which makes sense but is also odd if you think about it for a few seconds because the Tea Party just a bunch of protesters, not people in suits in Washington, right? Meanwhile, Boehner has said that Democrats are "not serious" about cutting spending, which sort of true, but also sort of means "not serious about taking money away from the people we want to take it away from and give it to the people we want to give it to."

»But spin aside, what does this mean for you? NPR and WSJ both have great takes on how the shutdown will affect punters on the streets, but guess what? So does Metro:

When the federal government shut down under then-President Bill Clinton in 1995, passport and visa offices closed.

Essential operations like public safety and public hospitals will remain open — and unfortunately, parking rules would remain in effect.

Taxes, meanwhile, will still be due April 18


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Metro announces Earth Day New York partnership for…

Metro is pleased to announce we are once again the media partner of Earth Day New York for 2014.

International

Putin fields question from NSA fugitive Edward Snowden

Edward Snowden, the fugitive former U.S. spy agency contractor who leaked details of intelligence eavesdropping, asked Russian President Vladimir Putin a question on Thursday during…

Local

Cops release sketch of Madison Avenue jewelry robbery…

Authorities continue to look for a man suspected in a $54,000 jewelry heist at a Madison Avenue store from from last week.

National

Rapper affiliate of Wu-Tang Clan 'cuts off own…

Rapper Andre Johnson, who has performed with New York outfit the Wu-Tang Clan, is in a critical condition after reportedly cutting off his own penis…

Entertainment

Here's what to do in New York this…

PARTY Brooklyn Book Launch: Bourbon by Dane Huckelbridge, ft. Widow Jane Distilling Tonight, 7 p.m. powerHouse Arena 37 Main St., Dumbo Free, 718-666-3049 www.powerhousearena.com The…

The Word

'Mrs. Doubtfire' sequel in the works

Finally, Hollywood is making your dreams come true - they're making that "Mrs. Doubtfire" sequel you've been clamoring for all these years.

The Word

Lawsuit accuses 'X-Men' director Bryan Singer of raping…

A new lawsuit accuses director Bryan Singer of sexual assault against a minor.

Movies

The Cannes Film Festival announces its 2014 lineup

The lineup of the 2014 Cannes Film Festival was announced this morning, promising the latest from a slew of usual (and some unusual) suspects.

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

NBA

Nets-Raptors first round NBA playoffs schedule, TV, times

The Nets tanked their way to the No. 6 seed over the course of the final few games of the season.

NBA

Knicks wrap up season with win over Raptors

The Knicks wrapped up their season as it began — undermanned — but that still didn’t deter them from ending it the right way.

MLB

Adam Warren closes out doubleheader sweep for Yankees

Adam Warren navigated a tricky ninth inning earn the Yankees a 2-0 victory over the Cubs.

Parenting

How to parent without gender stereotypes in a…

Christia Spears Brown, Phd. author of "Parenting beyond Pink & Blue" gives advice on raising kids free of gender stereotypes.

Wellbeing

This Week in Health News: breastfed infants trying…

Are breastfed infants trying to prevent mom from having another baby? Theory: The act of breastfeeding not only brings mom and baby closer together –…

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: chocolate may prevent obesity…

Can chocolate prevent obesity and diabetes? Location of study: U.S. Study subjects: Mice Results: The positive health benefits of chocolate have been studied increasingly more…

Wellbeing

Unexplained infertility may be caused by lack of…

Researchers have identified a protein on the egg's surface that interacts with another protein on the surface of sperm, allowing the two cells to join.