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Government Shutdown Looms as Funding Solution Remains Elusive

Jeff Carlson  

· 5 minute read

Jeff Carlson  

· 5 minute read

With just 11 days left to avoid a shutdown, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, Republican of California, remains at odds with his conservative flank and GOP moderates over a short-term government funding plan that Senate Democrats have also vowed will never fly in the Senate.

“Everyone knows that the House GOP’s proposed CR will never pass the Senate,” said Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer, Democrat of New York, on the Senate floor September 19. “We only have a few days left for House Republicans to come to their senses,” he added. “If House Republicans reject bipartisanship… a MAGA shutdown will be almost inevitable.”

On top of that, McCarthy’s personal team is certain that far right House Republicans are hoping to cause a shutdown in order to push him out as Speaker.

House Conservatives, including Representative Matt Gaetz, Republican of Florida, have said they want to oust McCarthy if he extends government funding for a short period of time.

A date for a vote on the CR remains uncertain. Members from the House Freedom Caucus and Republican Main Street Caucus reached a deal over the weekend on a proposed 30-day stopgap funding bill. The bill cuts spending by 8% across the board, exempting defense and veterans spending, as well as disaster aid.

The Rules Committee on September 18 paved the way for the GOP-drafted CR, which would keep federal agencies open until November 1 as it cuts spending and implements severe border security measures.

The measure, however, was quickly panned by a majority of House Republicans, both conservatives and moderates, once it became available. On September 19, McCarthy canceled plans to hold a vote on the CR by week’s end.

“The conference is still heavily divided,” said Representative Steve Womack, Republican of Arkansas. “I think there are personality conflicts at work involving certain members and the speaker. And this is coming down to a situation where they want to fight the speaker.”


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