House Republican leadership is urging its members to oppose a stopgap funding bill to avoid a shutdown in Washington.
Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) sent a memo to House GOP offices Tuesday night recommending that members vote against the continuing resolution (CR), which would keep the government funded at last year’s fiscal levels until Dec. 16.
The measure also includes roughly $12.3 billion to aid Ukraine amid its conflict with Russia.
In its memo, GOP leadership encouraged members of the conference to vote “no” on the CR as a rebuke for Democrats allegedly not negotiating with Republicans on key issues, including inflation, the border and the opioid crisis.
They also took issue with the length of the CR — the Dec. 16 expiration date gives the Democratic House majority an opportunity to craft a funding plan during the lame-duck session after Election Day.
“The Majority has refused to negotiate with Ranking Member Granger or any other House Republican leader on pressing issues relating to our government funding priorities, including runaway inflation, the supply chain crisis, the border crisis, or the opioid deaths associated with drugs like fentanyl coming across our open southern border, and have instead decided to kick the can to December, setting up another government funding showdown during the unaccountable lame duck period,” the memo reads, referring to House Appropriations Committee ranking member Kay Granger (R-Texas).
The Senate is currently considering the stopgap, which is expected to pass the upper chamber and head to the House on Thursday ahead of a Friday deadline. The measure cleared its first procedural vote on Tuesday night after Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) asked Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) to strip his controversial permitting reform from it.
Over the summer, Schumer promised Manchin that his legislation reforming permitting for energy projects would be tacked onto the spending bill in exchange for the West Virginia Democrat’s support of the Inflation Reduction Act, which Congress narrowly passed and President Biden signed into law last month.
Democrats and Republicans in both chambers lined up against Manchin’s legislation, putting the CR in jeopardy and increasing the chances of a government shutdown. Manchin asked Schumer to nix his provision roughly 30 minutes before the first procedural vote.
Even before the permitting reform issue had been hashed out, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) made clear his opposition to the continuing resolution.
In a statement last week, McCarthy said he would vote against the funding bill because of the December expiration date and because it does not address issues at the border.
“President Biden is asking for a government funding bill that simply kicks the can to an unaccountable lame-duck Congress that does nothing to actually address the nation’s problems — especially the crisis at our southern border,” McCarthy wrote.
“If Biden & Democrats don’t use this government funding bill to address the border crisis immediately, I’m voting NO on this bill, and I urge my colleagues to do the same,” he added.
Despite the House GOP whipping against the continuing resolution, the measure is still expected to pass the House and avert a government shutdown — especially since Manchin’s permitting reform, which more than 70 House Democrats opposed, has been stripped from the legislation.