Speaker Kevin McCarthy said Sunday that he plans to revive the Pentagon’s stalled spending measure and will try to push it to the House floor this week, even though members of the far-right Freedom Caucus opposed the measure. have vowed to resist unless their huge demands on spending are met. .
His decision, which was announced on Fox News, was an attempt to pressure members of the far right to drop their insistence on more spending cuts or risk political heat for blocking the Pentagon funding bill. Take advantage. The move will be a major test for ultra-conservative Republicans who are using the threat of a government shutdown at the end of the month to press their spending targets, as well as Mr. McCarthy’s attempt to unify the House GOP with his job. of the capacity of line
“We’re going to bring it to the floor, win or lose, and show the American people who’s for the Department of Defense, who’s for the military, who’s for a raise,” Mr. McCarthy said. said on Sunday Morning Futures. “Any time a Republican wants to back down and stop the floor from working when the Republicans have a majority, that puts us in a weak position to win at the end of the day,” he added.
The speaker, who is fighting calls from the right for his ouster over his handling of the spending bills, also reiterated his views, which were discussed in private meetings with House Republicans last week. That Congress should avoid a government shutdown after September 30. He said his own experience with previous government shutdowns had convinced him that they were best avoided, and that a shutdown would only put President Biden in a stronger position.
“I’ve never seen anybody win a shutdown,” he said. “A shutdown will only empower the Democrats. It will empower Biden.
Other House Republican leaders joined Mr. McCarthy in saying that there had been some progress in weekend talks to resolve their internal differences over his spending strategy, and that they Hopefully the logjam will be broken this week.
“We’re working through it, and I’m optimistic that we’ll continue to move forward with the appropriations process,” Elise Stefanik, a New York Republican and a member of the leadership team, said in a separate interview on “Fox News Sunday.” . “
Both the House and Senate hit roadblocks last week in efforts to advance year-round spending bills, as far-right Republicans derailed the appropriations process as time ran out.
Leaders in both chambers acknowledge that a stopgap measure will be needed to keep government agencies open after Sept. 30 because none of the 12 annual appropriations bills have yet been passed by Congress.
Mr. McCarthy also faces challenges in passing a temporary funding bill because many right-wing House Republicans have said they will not vote for one without spending cuts and tough new border measures. House Republicans are working to reach a compromise that would tie elements of a border security bill passed this year to temporary funding, but such an approach has met with stiff resistance from Senate Democrats. may be faced.
Mr McCarthy has been maneuvering on spending issues as he faces threats from the far right for not honoring spending pledges and other concessions to secure votes during his 15 years in the Speakership. About a possible move to remove him from the House’s top post. The battle for the job in January. The speaker said he would fight to keep his job and would not let threats distract him from the spending showdown.
“I’m just going to focus on the American people,” he said, adding: “We’ve made a lot of progress here in changing this capital. And when you change Washington, you’ve got enemies.
Many more mainstream Republicans expressed frustration last week at efforts by the ultra-conservative wing of their party to block the spending bills and urged Mr. McCarthy to put the Pentagon bill on the floor. Ms. Stefanek said Sunday that she and a majority of House Republicans believed “the speaker would survive any kind of motion” to remove her from office.
On ABC’s “This Week,” Representative Hakeem Jeffries of New York, the Democratic leader, said the Republican fight over spending issues amounted to a “civil war” and would not say whether Democrats would vote for Mr. McCarthy. Will help keep it in place. The floor challenge became a reality.
“If that moment presents itself, we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it,” Mr Jeffries said. “But what we must focus on right now is avoiding an unnecessary government shutdown that would harm the ability to recover our economy, which President Biden has so far had a great recovery in. And that’s a partisan one.” , should not be hampered by political gamesmanship.”