House passes bill to avert government shutdown, setting up pre-Christmas showdown

House passes bill to avert government shutdown, setting up pre-Christmas showdown

The U.S. House of Representatives, working against a Friday midnight deadline, approved legislation on Thursday to fund a wide range of federal programs through December 22 and avoid a partial government shutdown when existing money expires. At the same time they will be rushing to finish work on tax legislation before leaving Washington for the holidays.

Ahead of Thursday's vote, House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiMcConnell names Senate GOP tax conferees Abortion-rights group endorses Nadler in race to replace Conyers on Judiciary Trump rips Dems a day ahead of key White House meeting MORE (D-Calif.) made clear that Democrats wouldn't support the two-week stopgap.

"They could either do that and give a pay raise to our servicemen and women and provide the money we need to take care of these places with hurricanes, or they can shut down the government", he said.

"This is a waste of time", Pelosi said at a press conference in the Capitol.

In a later meeting with reporters, Pelosi offered a list of reasons - including defense spending - for not supporting the CR deal. That stopgap measure could be combined with other legislation, including measures shoring up Obamacare insurance markets and extending a children's health insurance program.

The Freedom Caucus rebellion could empower House Democrats to seek concessions on the short-term measure if their votes are needed to pass it.

"I'm exhausted of seeing the same play again and again", he said. Once the budget deal is reached, lawmakers can work out detailed spending plan that would fund the government through the rest of the fiscal year 2018 which ends on September 30 next year.

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Trump said Thursday that he hopes the group will make good progress as they prepare to discuss plans to avert a government shutdown and reach an end-of-year budget agreement.

Pelosi emphasized that Democrats don't want to see a government shutdown, but couldn't support Thursday's bill because it doesn't include their priorities like protections for young immigrants, funding for the opioid crisis and relief for communities affected by recent natural disasters.

Schumer denied that Democrats are eager to force a confrontation.

Earlier on Thursday, Schumer said Trump seemed to be rooting for a shutdown and if one occurs, "it will fall on his shoulders". Nobody here wants a shutdown. "The number one priority for our country is to make certain we protect this Constitution and our way of life, and we've got great bipartisan support".

He also said Ryan promised he'd fight in coming weeks to pass a full-year budget for the military and leave fights with Democrats over domestic spending for later.

The conservative House Freedom Caucus is pushing Ryan to try to force Democrats to accept higher military funding without any increase in domestic funding. The defense measure, H.R. 3219, would give the Defense Department $584.2 billion in discretionary funding and $73.9 billion in war funding - more than the current $522 billion cap for the Pentagon alone.

"The point is we're having the kind of family discussion that we need to have about how to proceed forward with a majority, and I'm confident we will have that", the Wisconsin Republican said. But lawmakers and President Donald Trump still have longer-range disputes to settle over spending, immigration and other issues before they can declare budget peace.

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