House Takes Decisive Action to Prevent Shutdown Amidst Speaker Johnson’s Defiance of GOP Rebels

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Thursday, the House of Representatives voted in favor of a short-term extension of government funding. The bill will now be sent to President Biden, who must sign it by Friday evening to avoid a partial shutdown.

It was passed by 314 votes to 108 and almost split the House GOP into two halves — 107 Republicans supported its passage while 106 voted against it.

The House rushed to bring the bill, dubbed a Continuing Resolution (CR), to the floor of the House Thursday afternoon after the Senate had passed it by 77 votes to 18.

The bill was put to a vote as a suspension of rules. This means that it does not require a formal vote, but instead requires two-thirds support of all House members for its final approval.

Speaker Mike Johnson’s Right flank was enraged by the passage of yet another CR. Johnson, R.-La. had previously said he was “done” with the CRs, after passing one in Nov. However, congressional leaders agreed that it was needed to give legislators more time to come up with a spending agreement for fiscal year 2020.

Hours before the vote, House Freedom Caucus Chair Bob Good, R-Va., met with Johnson to persuade him to add a border security amendment to the CR.

Good told reporters that Johnson was “considering” it, arguing that “the Senate will have to decide whether they are willing to fund the government and secure border or refuse to fund government because they do not want to secure the border.”

Johnson put an end to the rumors immediately. Raj Shah, his spokesman, wrote on X minutes following Good’s press conference, “The plan is unchanged.” The House will vote on the stop-gap measure to keep the Government open tonight.

The new CR would maintain Johnson’s “ladder” approach, by keeping two separate funding deadlines in tact and extending them respectively from Jan. 19, and Feb. 2, to March 1, and March 8.

Johnson said previously that the bill was intended to prevent Congress from passing a single “omnibus” budget, which Republicans in both the House of Representatives and Senate are opposed to.

Good and other conservative House Freedom Caucus members complained about the CR this week, but they acknowledged that there was not much they could do given the support of House Democrats and a large number of House Republicans.

Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-Ga.) said he is “an optimist,” but acknowledged that conservatives likely have little power to prevent the CR’s passage.

“I guess if he puts it on suspension, a lot of Democrats vote for it, maybe that’s a correct statement. But it’s certainly not something I’m going to vote for,” he said.