Washington (AP) - The House Budget Committee chairman says Republicans don't want to see the government shut down in a fight with President Barack Obama over spending priorities.
Wisconsin Republican Paul Ryan also tells ABC's "Good Morning America" the GOP doesn't want to "rubber stamp" spending policies it opposes just to keep the government running.
Ryan says "we obviously don't want to see a shutdown occur" if lawmakers can't agree on a short-term spending bill by a March 4 deadline. He said Obama "punted" on confronting the deficit.
Asked what Republicans would do differently, Ryan said lawmakers must not exempt benefit programs like Social Security and Medicare from cuts. Ryan said that if Republicans "ignore the drivers of our debt, which are these entitlement programs, then we are no better than the president."