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Congress moves to avoid government shutdown, White House responds to Biden gaffe

Yahoo Finance's Rick Newman discusses Senator Joe Manchin's (D-WV) permitting proposal in the Senate's stopgap measure to avoid a government shutdown, plus President Biden's gaffe at an event in which he asked about a deceased lawmaker.

Video Transcript

[AUDIO LOGO]

- Welcome back, everyone. The risk of a government shutdown was averted after the Senate announced they are set to advance a bill to sustain government funding at current levels that would keep the government running through December 16. For more on this, let's bring in Yahoo Finance's Rick Newman.

All right, so running at least until the holidays, it seems.

RICK NEWMAN: Yeah, so we don't have to worry about a government shutdown. It's the dog that, I guess, is not going to bark in October. The behind the scenes here is there was this energy permitting bill that Senator Joe Manchin, the Democrat from West Virginia, he wanted attach to this must-pass spending bill, and Republicans said, we're not going to vote for this, and a couple of Democrats, if that is in there. So Manchin said, OK, fine. Take it out.

This permitting bill is actually important because what Manchin wants to do is speed up federal permitting for some fossil fuel infrastructure, but it would also affect transmission lines that are necessary to run from solar and wind facilities to get that energy into the grid. So what he wants to do is give the federal government the ability to speed up those approvals so it doesn't get stuck in different jurisdictions.

And so Republicans favor that in principle, but they weren't going to vote for it because they're mad at Manchin because he agreed to vote for the Inflation Reduction Act in August. So that-- so maybe we will get this permitting bill down the road when Republicans decide they're not so mad at Joe Manchin anymore, but not now.

- And against this backdrop of a stock market under pressure, economy under pressure, we find President Biden speaking about, what, hunger, nutrition, and health.

RICK NEWMAN: Well, Biden had a senior moment yesterday. He was at this event that otherwise should have gotten very little attention. But at some point in the event, he said, where's Jackie? And he was referring to former member of Congress Jackie Walorski who died in a car crash in August.

Biden knew that at the time. So now where's Jackie is going to be, for sure, the latest meme for people questioning whether Biden is, you know, losing it a little bit. I do not believe that Biden is senile. I think there are many reasons to believe that he is competent and he's capable of running the government, but he had this moment that is not going to play well, to put it mildly.

JULIE HYMAN: Right. I mean, and maybe overshadowing-- yes, maybe that event would have gotten little attention, but it's an important event also.

RICK NEWMAN: Right.

JULIE HYMAN: The administration is pushing to extend free school meals, which was something that was going on during the pandemic, to now make that permanent, which is something the Republicans, I know, have pushed back against. I mean, it seems like a no brainer to me, but, you know.

RICK NEWMAN: Right. So, you know, Biden will try to come out and demonstrate his competence. You know, I-- for people who are worried about this, I say, you know, watch him during live events. Watch how he responds, unscripted, when the press tries to corner him, like the "60 Minutes" interview he did a couple weeks ago.

You know, he holds his own. But then he does have moments like this, which maybe is a little more than just a gaffe.

- Rick, do you think the president should be-- at least be addressing what's happening here in the market?

RICK NEWMAN: What would he say?

- Yeah.

RICK NEWMAN: You know, Trump used to do that all the time. And what did Trump used to say? He used to say the Federal Reserve should do something, do whatever it takes to improve things. And no one thought that was great. So I think what Biden maybe could do is acknowledge what's going on. But, you know, for him to say I wish the Fed would-- would--

- [INAUDIBLE]

RICK NEWMAN: --you know, would come off the brakes a little bit here, he has pledged not to do that. He has pledged to let Jay Powell and the Federal Reserve do their jobs without any commentary from him. So--

- Good point.

RICK NEWMAN: --not sure there's much he could do.

- Yahoo Finance team columnist Rick Newman, always good to see you.

RICK NEWMAN: Bye, guys.