The U.S. House of Representatives passed a measure Thursday evening to fund the government and avoid a shutdown with a handful of Republicans voting against the bill and five Democrats voting in favor.
“Once again, a Continuing Resolution (CR) is needed to provide government funding and avoid a shutdown,” House Appropriations Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen said in a statement. “My hope is that House and Senate Leadership and the White House can reach consensus quickly on a budget agreement, so that essential Appropriations work on all 12 government funding bills can be completed. We are now four months into the 2018 Fiscal Year, and Congress must act as soon as possible to ensure that proper, year-long funding for our national defense and other critical federal programs is enacted.”
The CR, which passed by a vote of 230-197, will fund the government through Feb. 16 if the Senate passes it. If the Senate does not pass the bill by Friday night, the government will shut down for the first time since 2013.
Democrats were mostly opposed to the stop-gap fix as they hoped to force Republicans into accepting a DACA fix that includes amnesty for DREAMer illegal immigrants with few or no concessions on border security. Some Republicans voted against the resolution protesting the constant short-term funding process that makes it difficult for the Department of Defense to budget long term. Holding up full-year funding for defense is seen by most as Democrats playing politics with the men and women in the armed forces.
“Congress’ inability to reach a budget agreement is a total abdication of our responsibility to defend the nation and give our service members the resources they need to succeed,” Senator John McCain (R-AZ) said in a statement.
As a gift to progressives, the CR includes a six-year reauthorization and associated funding for the Children’s Health insurance Program (CHIP) and extension of some Obamacare taxation provisions.
The bill will face a tight vote in the Senate as Republicans only hold a single-seat majority.