Darkness falls on the U.S. Capitol as Congressional leaders work into the night just days before the budget ceiling deadline hits. 

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada walks off the Senate floor en route to the office of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky for a meeting at the Capitol. Republicans pushed to strip money from the new health care law which led to the government shutdown on Oct. 1, 2013. 

The shutdown pinched millions of Americans, including furloughed federal workers and mothers seeking food aid, and closed national parks across the country such as the National Mall in Washington, D.C.  

A guard stands watch in the empty Rotunda of the Capitol. The possibility that the government would not be able to meet its obligations prompted grim warnings of an economic catastrophe that would ripple through stock markets, foreign capitals, corporate boardrooms, state budget offices and the bank accounts of everyday investors.    

Time stops on the historic Ohio Clock due to its furloughed mechanic.   

Reporters swarm around Senator John McCain of Arizona pressing for questions on the negotiations between the senate leaders.  

Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican minority leader, negotiates a senate deal with Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader, a day before the budget ceiling deadline and stressed that the budget cuts extracted in the 2011 fiscal showdown were not reversed, as some Democrats had wanted. 

Afternoon light falls on a bronze statue near the Senate chamber in the Capitol. In the midst of the turmoil, the credit rating agency Fitch put the United States on a “negative ratings watch,” warning that Congressional intransigence had put the full faith and credit of the government at risk.  

“Unfortunately, the Washington establishment is failing to listen to the American people,” said Senator Ted Cruz, Republican of Texas, as he emerges from a meeting of Senate Republicans called to ratify the agreement. In September, Mr. Cruz vowed to speak “until I cannot stand” to rally voters against the health care law; however, Cruz said he would not stop the senate deal from passing after much pressure to reopen the government. 

A shadow of a man is cast on the back of a reporter. The cost of Congress’s gridlock has run well into the billions, economists estimate. And the total will continue to grow after the shutdown ends and uncertainty persists about whether lawmakers may reach another deadlock next year.  

Speaker of the House John A. Boehner walks to the House floor to vote on the Senate bill. The bill passed in the House which later reopened the government and extend the debt ceiling. 

A statue in the senate hallway is reflected on a scene of Washington, D.C. The cost of Congress’s gridlock ran well into the billions, economists estimated. And the total has continued to grow after the shutdown ended and uncertainty persisted about whether lawmakers would reach another deadlock next year.  

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