The Latest: GOP lacking votes to keep government open
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on Congress’ battle over the budget (all times local):
Conservatives say there’s enough Republican opposition to scuttle a plan by House GOP leaders to prevent a government shutdown this weekend.
Around half of the roughly 30 members of the hard-right House Freedom Caucus met privately late Tuesday. When they emerged, leader Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., said there are not enough Republican votes to push the GOP leaders’ measure through the House this week with GOP-only support.
The plan by House leaders would temporarily finance government agencies through mid-February. Meadows says conservatives want the measure to allow additional defense spending.
Most Democrats are vowing to oppose the bill. They want the two sides to reach agreement on legislation protecting hundreds of thousands of young immigrants from deportation.
House GOP leaders are looking to delay implementation of unpopular taxes on medical devices and generous employer-subsidized health care taxes as sweeteners for a stopgap spending bill that’s needed to avert a government shutdown this weekend.
That’s according to GOP aides briefed on the measure before its planned introduction Tuesday night.
Repeal of the taxes, part of former President Barack Obama’s marquee health law, could ease the way for the stopgap measure among some GOP conservatives.
The aides spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss a plan that wasn’t yet public. They also predicted the measure would include a long-delayed renewal of a popular health insurance program for children.
Democrats are pressing to attach protections from deportation for younger immigrants who were brought to the country illegally as children.
— By Associated Press writer Andrew Taylor
A deal between President Donald Trump and Congress to protect young immigrants from deportation remains distant. House GOP leaders are discussing plans for a bill temporarily keeping federal agencies open in hopes of avoiding an election-year shutdown this weekend.
The continuing firestorm over Trump’s incendiary remarks about countries in Africa is roiling partisan relations. The comments were reported by participants and others and denied by Trump. Either way, they’re complicating efforts to craft a bipartisan agreement protecting younger immigrants brought to the country illegally as children, plus toughening border security with steps including funds to start building Trump’s long-promised border wall.
Federal agencies would begin closing if Congress can’t enact legislation temporarily financing government by midnight Friday.
House Republicans were meeting privately late Tuesday to discuss their plans.