April 8th, 2011
10:54 AM ET
Washington (CNN) - Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, said Friday morning that the abortion issue is the lone remaining stumbling block for negotiators trying to reach a budget agreement that would prevent a government shutdown.
"This all deals with women's health. Everything (else) has been resolved. Everything," Reid said. "It's an ideological battle. It has nothing to do with fiscal integrity in this country."
Republicans have been pushing to strip federal funding from Planned Parenthood during the budget talks. They are also trying to get federal dollars now set aside for family planning and women's health turned into block grants for states, according to a Democratic source.
Such a move - opposed by Democrats, according to the source - would give governors and state legislatures more ability to cut funding for services opposed by conservatives.
A spokesman for Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, immediately disputed Reid's assertion that abortion is the key sticking point.
"While nothing will be decided until everything is decided, the largest issue is still spending cuts," Michael Steel said. "The American people want to cut spending to help the private sector create jobs - and the Democrats that run Washington don't." (follow live blogging on the latest developments)
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