Conservative Republicans in the House of Representatives have voiced their opposition to a bipartisan deal to avoid a government shutdown that was negotiated by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.).
As reported by Fox News, the House Freedom Caucus is leading the opposition to the deal and Speaker Johnson’s role in it. The Caucus recirculated a memo from December declaring that any funding bill that exceeded $1.59 trillion would be “totally unacceptable.”
“It’s even worse than we thought,” the group posted on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. “Don’t believe the spin. Once you break through typical Washington math, the true total programmatic spending level is $1.658 trillion — not $1.59 trillion.”
Federal funding is set to expire on January 19th for certain agencies, with a complete expiration for all other agencies on February 2nd.
Conservative opposition could lead to another stalemate in the House due to the GOP’s shrinking majority. After winning an already-narrow four-seat majority in the 2022 midterms, the Republicans’ majority has been reduced to just two seats following the expulsion of George Santos (R-N.Y.) and the resignation of former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.). On Friday, Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-La.) announced that he would be spending time recovering from cancer-related treatment for most of the rest of January.
In order to get around such a narrow majority, House leadership would have to put any such spending bills under suspension, thus working around the procedural hurdles but forcing the threshold for final passage up to two-thirds of the House instead of just a majority, thus requiring significant Democratic support.
Among the Republicans who have said they oppose the agreement are Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) and Congressman Tim Burchett (R-Tenn.).
“I’m currently a no,” said Burchett. “I’d like to see some real cuts…and maybe cut back on all the…spending that we’ve been doing. And until we do that, we are falling off a fiscal cliff.”
The House is set to return from its Christmas and New Years recess on January 9th.