Deal follows weeks of frustration for federal employees in Illinois
Both U.S. senators from Illinois said they support a spending deal reached late Friday night to avoid a government shutdown. If finalized, this agreement would wrap up weeks of uncertainty for federal employees, including those who work in the Chicago area.
On Friday evening before the deal was struck, William Middendorf left work in federal plaza downtown. Middendorf was clearly frustrated with the last-minute spending debate going on in Washington.
"Of course, it was a distraction. But, I mean, you knew it was coming - so everybody was working hard, we were working very hard, and extra time just to get stuff done," Middendorf said. "Because we were trying to get stuff done because that's what we are. We're public servants. And people laugh at us for saying that, but we are. We're not the bureaucrats. That's Congress."
Illinois U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, a Republican, seemed to share some of that frustration. Last night he called the process "overly dramatic."
Both Kirk and Democratic U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin said they support the budget deal. In a statement, Durbin called the spending cuts "painful," while adding that more work remains to address the country's long-term debt.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.