Emerging from a closed-door meeting with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NY) told reporters that the sides were making progress on a deal to end the government shutdown and raise the debt limit and that he hoped to have a plan ready for a Monday afternoon meeting at the White House.
“I hope so,” Reid said when asked if a proposal would be ready for a 3 p.m. meeting with himself, McConnell, President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).
“We’re getting closer,” he said. Reid and McConnell met for about half an hour Monday in McConnell’s office.
According to Politico, Reid has made McConnell an offer that would include re-opening the government for a shorter period, until some time in December, while extending the debt limit for a longer period, between six and nine months. Senate Democrats are also open to delaying Obamacare’s medical device tax and adding requirements that people who receive tax credits through the law have their income verified — but only in exchange for some concessions from Republicans, according to the report.
Some of Reid’s Democratic colleagues were more optimistic after another short meeting in Reid’s office.
“Very encouraging, very encouraging,” Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) told reporters. “Everyone’s just hopeful that things work out the way they should. The most promising thing is we’re moving in the right direction.”
UPDATE: 1:35 p.m. ET
Reid re-entered McConnell’s office a little after 1:30 p.m. ET.