It is believed that the House Republicans are looking to avoid a government shutdown, coming Friday, by preparing to pair a full year spending on defense with a short-term measure. The officials have effectively ‘dared’ the Democrats in the Senate to block this move.
On the other hand, Democrats for long have been demanding to match the increase in defense spending with the increase in nondefense spending. In addition to this, the Democrats are aiming to close the immigration deal prior to agreeing a ‘broader deal’ of increasing the budget spending caps.
All of this changed with the decision made by the GOP leadership that puts Senate Democrats in an undesirable position.
It is believed that Senate Republicans still require nine votes from the Democrats if they want to beat back a Democratic-led filibuster. In a floor speech, Schumer stated, “Sending a cromnibus to the Senate, one that just funded defense and cut programs crucial to the middle class, would be barreling head-first into a dead-end.” In this statement, Schumer is referring to a cross between an omnibus spending bill and short-term continuing resolution (CR) to keep the government open.
The Republican whip, Rep. Steve Scalise (La.) said that the House will be ready to vote on the package on Tuesday.
“[We’ll] attach the [Defense Department] appropriations bill, as well as community health center funding, to the CR and send it over to the Senate tomorrow. We’ve passed a number of defense appropriations bills, and the Senate has yet to take action on any of them. So it’s about time that they confront the importance of funding our national defense,” he added.
Scalise further added that CR will not include language, whatsoever, in order to elevate the debt ceiling. This part is included in the deal of the same package of lifting spending caps that are currently being negotiated. “That’s all being discussed in the context of the cap negotiations, which are separate,” he continued.
When talked about the leadership’s funding proposal, the members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus are planning to meet on Monday. A former Freedom Caucus chairman, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) stated, “We haven’t taken an official position. Our group is going to say either full defense funding or we’re not for it.”
Schumer accused Ryan of bowing to his right flank.
“Speaker Ryan needs to do what’s best for the country and work in a bipartisan way to fund the government, even if not every faction of his caucus will go along,” he said.