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 February 22, 2024

Republicans call on Speaker Johnson to support stop-gap funding bill

Some Republican members of the U.S. House of Representatives are calling upon Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) to put forth a stop-gap funding bill. 

Members of the House Freedom Caucus implored Johnson to take this step in a letter that they sent to him on Wednesday.

The letter can be read in its entirety here:

What's going on?

The federal government, once again, is about to run out of money, which means that another shutdown is looming.

The House Freedom Caucus has made sure that government spending is a significant issue. The reader may remember that the caucus removed Johnson's predecessor, former U.S. Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), from the speakership position after McCarthy reached a spending agreement with President Joe Biden that the caucus did not agree with.

Now, the caucus wants Johnson to do a better job than McCarthy did, which has put Johnson in a difficult position. The problem stems from the fact that Republicans only have control of the House, and their margin is really slim. In other words, Johnson does not have that much leverage at the negotiating table with Biden and the Democrats.

Nonetheless, the caucus is pressuring Johnson to get some concessions from the Democrats.

Now, the caucus wants Johnson, at the very least, to put forth a yearlong stopgap funding bill, if he cannot get the concessions. The stopgap measure would cut back on government spending and keep the issue from clouding the election.

The letter

The caucus pushed for the stopgap measure in the letter that they sent to Johnson on Wednesday.

"If we are not going to secure significant policy changes or even keep spending below the caps adopted by bipartisan majorities less than one year ago, why would we proceed when we could instead pass a year-long funding resolution that would save Americans $100 billion in year one?" the group wrote.

Elsewhere in the letter, the caucus highlighted some of the policy concessions that they would like Johnson to obtain from the Democrats.

The Hill reports:

Included in a list of provisions outlined in the letter are measures that would reduce “Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas’ salary to $0,” target the Pentagon’s abortion travel policy and defund Planned Parenthood, as well as other items taking aim some of the Biden administration’s actions on student loans and funding for what it described as a “new, massive Pentagon-sized headquarters for the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”

The caucus has asked Johnson for an update on the situation. It is unclear, at the time of this writing, whether Johnson has provided one.

Written By:
Robert Ayers

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