House To Vote On Short-Term Spending Bill

Republicans prepare to muscle through short-term spending bill

Republicans in the House will reportedly pitch a plan that includes funding the military for a year and the rest of the government for a shorter period to prevent a government shutdown this week.

"That's all being discussed in the context of the cap negotiations, which are separate", he said.

In addition to defense, the bill would include funding for community health centers as well as a package of expiring Medicare programs that need to be extended.

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., chairman of the arch-conservative House Freedom Caucus, said the push to combine a long-term military funding bill with a short-term domestic bill was a "good plan" that conservatives could support.

Within the Republican Party, many House conservatives want to push for broader changes to the immigration system, while moderates want to stay focused on DACA.

Democrats want a dollar-for-dollar increase in non-defense discretionary spending in return for the GOP's swelling defense price tag. "Our group is going to say either full defense funding or we're not for it". "That's how this body works".

The House is likely to vote Tuesday on its spending bill, sending it to the Senate and then recessing for the week in order for Democrats to hold their yearly policy retreat on Maryland's Eastern Shore.

"We've got to do something to force them to actually do their jobs", he said of senators.

U.S. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said on Tuesday that lawmakers were approaching a deal on spending limits for 2018, two days before a stop-gap government funding is due to expire. Members of the libertarian-leaning House Freedom Caucus gave their official thumbs-up for the measure after a meeting Monday night, despite concerns about the overall spending number-meaning at least 80 percent of the roughly three dozen lawmakers supported it.

Walden also believes Minority Leaders Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is more of a drag on Democratic candidates in competitive districts than Trump is for Republicans.

Still unresolved is the issue of protections for undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as minors, known as "dreamers".

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Indeed, Democrats forced a three-day shutdown last month over immigration issues, although a repeat is not expected this week. Congress has passed a series of continuing resolutions, or CRs, to keep the government open, except for one brief closure when Democrats resisted approving a stopgap bill to press for unrelated immigration reforms.

The federal government's first partial shutdown of the year came to a close just 14 days ago. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., a leader on the immigration issue, said Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union".

He said McConnell has promised that immigration debate "will be neutral and fair to all sides".

"That's what we were looking for when there was a shutdown. We're moving forward", Durbin added.

Since the new fiscal year began on October 1, Congress has been unable to settle on an overall discretionary spending level, which would allow members to write the annual appropriations bills. The situation particularly infuriates defense hawks, who argue the Pentagon is being deprived of necessary resources.

It's a mess of Congress' own making: Lawmakers have been unable to come together around a broader two-year spending deal to lift budget caps that would otherwise snap into place under a 2011 law that was meant to enforce fiscal discipline in the Capitol. Republicans want to bust spending caps adopted as part of the Budget Control Act to supplement defense spending to the tune of $659.2 billion.

Schumer said McConnell has committed that if negotiators fail to reach an immigration deal before the stopgap spending measure expires on February 8 "the Senate will immediately proceed to consideration of legislation" to protect "Dreamers".

Nonetheless, aides in both parties say a spending deal is in reach and could be finalized this week or next.

If a budget deal is reached this week, the spending committees could get to work writing the actual legislation funding the government through September 30 - setting up another must-pass bill in March.

"[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", Scalise told The Hill.

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