The House of Representatives passed a funding bill intended to prevent a government shutdown this week. The move could avoid a protracted political battle over the issue that ultimately cost former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) his title.
Without the agreement, the federal government would have likely shut down within the next month. The continuing resolution was supported by new House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA), who proposed the plan.
Johnson believed that the effort would allow for congressional Republicans to focus on specific goals and set future dates for funding of several key government agencies.
Spending regarding Veterans Affairs and the Department of Agriculture among others would be considered by January while eight other appropriations bills would be on the docket by February.
Following the passage of the bill, the Senate will consider whether to approve it. House Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said that the goal was to have a decision by the end of Friday.
Despite the consensus from the leadership of the two parties on the bill, there was significant opposition from within the House Freedom Caucus. Members of the conservative faction deemed that the spending levels in the bill were too high and could not be sustained in the long run.
Members of the caucus released a statement which read that its members opposed the “proposed “clean” Continuing Resolution as it contains no spending reduction, no border security and not a single meaningful win for the American people. Republicans must stop negotiating against ourselves over fears of what the Senate may do with the promise “roll over today and we’ll fight tomorrow.”
“While we remain committed to working with Speaker Johnson, we need bold change.”
HFC Official Position on CR: No More “Rolling Over Today To Fight Tomorrow” pic.twitter.com/8rE2VbRCbe
— House Freedom Caucus (@freedomcaucus) November 14, 2023
Johnson walked a political tightrope between the risk of a government shutdown and demands from conservatives who desire a reduction in government spending. Following the passage of the last funding bill, a number of Republicans rebelled against McCarthy, leading to his ouster.