John Boehner
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House Speaker John Boehner battles over spending

Republicans and Democrats have offered starkly different reasons for an impasse in talks on US spending cuts as the clock ticks down towards a government shutdown.

Top Democratic leader Harry Reid said both sides had agreed to $38bn (£23bn) in cuts but were unable to agree on federal funding for abortion

House Speaker John Boehner said the main issue was the level of cuts.

"There is only one reason that we do not have an agreement yet and that issue is spending," he said.

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