House Republican didn’t mean to advance spending bill: ‘To be honest with you, I was asleep at the switch’

House Republican didn’t mean to advance spending bill: ‘To be honest with you, I was asleep at the switch’

Editor’s note: Rep. Ralph Norman (R-S.C.) told reporters he was “asleep at the switch” during a Monday night vote. A previous version of this story contained an incorrect quotation.

A House conservative said Tuesday that he voted to advance the stopgap spending bill by mistake after previously suggesting he would oppose it.

Rep. Ralph Norman (R-S.C.) said he voted in favor of a procedural vote to advance the proposed short-term funding stopgap by accident Monday night, explaining to reporters that he meant to vote against it in hopes of seeing higher spending cuts.

“Well, the vote last night — to be honest with you, I was asleep at the switch,” he told reporters.

“I was gonna vote against it, but it’ll come to the floor, which is fine,” he said, noting that he will vote against the rule if it reaches the House floor.

The House was scheduled to vote at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday on the rule to allow the GOP continuing resolution (CR) proposal to move forward, but House GOP leadership pulled the vote just hours before it was supposed to take place.

The decision to put off the vote suggests Republicans do not have enough support to approve either the rule on the bill or the bill itself when it comes to the floor.

At the center of the rules vote is the partisan CR proposal Republicans put together Sunday night, which would avert a government shutdown by extending government funding until Oct. 31 along with an 8 percent cut to all discretionary spending outside the departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs. It also includes most of the House GOP’s H.R. 2 border crackdown bill that it passed earlier this year.

Though the legislation represented a compromise between the conservative House Freedom Caucus and the Main Steet Caucus, at least a dozen Republicans said they would vote against it, and an additional four Republicans are leaning toward voting against it.

Norman, a member of the Freedom Caucus, said that while he “loves” the 8 percent cuts included in the measure, he would vote against the procedural rule. He is demanding that leadership provide them with the top-line figures for all 12 appropriations bills — numbers that conservatives have been asking for over months.

“I just want to see the total,” Norman told reporters. “A pie has a lot of different ingredients. I want to see all the ingredients that leadership will commit to putting in this pie.”

It’s unclear when or if the procedural vote will take place on the underlying legislation after it was removed from the scheduled vote. Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), who is attempting to garner his colleagues’ support for the proposal, said Tuesday that the procedural vote is “coming up.”

Even if McCarthy manages to piece together enough support for the CR and wins House passage, it will not be approved in the Senate — but it could give the House GOP more leverage in talks with Senate Democrats.

Aris Folley contributed.

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