- The non-traditional two-step stopgap spending bill is meant to avert a government shutdown come November 18
- Plan pitches keeping funding at 2023 levels for a few extra months – drawing the ire of fiscal hawks who want steep budget cuts
Speaker Mike Johnson pitched a short-term government funding plan over the weekend that has already garnered vocal opposition from at least six right-wing Republicans.
The non-traditional two-step stopgap spending bill is meant to avert a government shutdown come November 18, but the plan pitches keeping funding at 2023 levels for a few extra months – drawing the ire of fiscal hawks who want steep budget cuts.
House Republicans have been pushing for Congress to actually pass 12 single-subject spending bills to fund each agency of government individually.
The Johnson continuing resolution, or CR, plan would push the funding deadline for some agencies to January and other agencies to February. The idea is that non-controversial appropriations bills would be figured out first before tackling the tougher ones.
It could be voted on as soon as Tuesday.
Eight Republicans joined Democrats in ousting McCarthy last time he put a so-called ‘clean’ CR on the House floor. At least six Republicans have already vowed to vote no on Johnson’s plan, but it’s expected they will give his leadership more leeway to bring it to the floor after three chaotic weeks without a speaker.
Johnson was among the 90 Republicans who voted against McCarthy’s six-week CR at the end of September.
Democrats have already attacked the so-called ‘laddered’ plan – with White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre calling it an ‘unserious proposal’ and a ‘recipe for more Republican chaos and more shutdowns — full stop.’
But some on the other side of the aisle, however, are expected to vote for it. First, the House must pass the rule to tee up debate on the deal – which could be the toughest part. According to historic precedent, the party in the majority is typically responsible for passing the rule. But some obstinate Republicans have been tanking rule votes this year to protest legislation.
Under Johnson’s CR funding for agencies that fall under agriculture, rural development and the Food and Drug Administration; energy and water development; military construction and Veterans Affairs; and Transportation, Housing and Urban Development would end January 19. Funding for the rest of the agencies would end only two weeks later on February 2.
Reps. Chip Roy (R-Texas), Warren Davidson (R-Ohio), Marjorie Taylor Greene, Ga., Bob Good, R-Va., and George Santos, R-N.Y., have already pledged to vote against the CR.
‘My opposition to the clean CR just announced by the Speaker to the @HouseGOP cannot be overstated. Funding Pelosi level spending & policies for 75 days – for future “promises,”‘ Roy wrote on X on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the Senate is teeing up a vote on its own version of a CR, the details of which have not been released but would likely not be laddered.
But Democratic senators have not entirely ruled out Johnson’s approach.
Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., told NBC’s ‘Meet the Press’ on Sunday:
‘I don’t like this laddered CR approach. It looks gimmicky to me, but I’m open to what the House is talking about. The priority has to be keeping the government open, and I think this is a moment where reasonable people in the Senate — and that’s where most of the reasonable people are these days — have to make sure that we are not making the perfect the enemy of the good. I don’t like what the House is talking about, but I’m willing to listen.’