Speaker of the House Paul Ryan said Sunday that in order to end the government shutdown sooner, the House would agree to an even shorter short-term spending bill to fund the government through February 8.
"This eye-popping number is a testament to Speaker Ryan, House Republicans, and the agenda that they led the fight on in 2017", said Kevin Seifert, executive director of Team Ryan, in a statement. "We have agreed that we would accept that in the House and so we will see sometime today whether or not they have the votes for that. We are waiting for the Senate Democrats to open the government back up", the Wisconsin Republican said on CBS' "Face the Nation" Sunday morning.
"We do some insane things in Washington, but this is utter madness", said Ryan.
President Obama cared enough to sign a law protecting military pay during the 2013 shutdown, and Paul Ryan apparently cared enough to vote for it.
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If the House passes a hard-line Trumpian immigration bill before sending the spending bill over to the Senate, the whole gambit of making Senate Democrats look like the ones being unreasonable on immigration policy could fall apart. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., accused Democrats of a "fixation on illegal immigration", which he said "has them threatening to filibuster spending for the whole government". "How can you negotiate with the president, who has to sign the legislation, is like a sphinx on this issue, or says one thing one day and one thing the next?" "This is ridiculous." The bill would also have funded the Children's Health Insurance Program, or CHIP. "But Senate Democrats believe none of it is too high a price to pay for appeasing their political base". Republicans were all but daring Democrats to scuttle the bill and force a shutdown because of immigration, which they said would hurt Democratic senators seeking re-election in 10 states that Trump carried in 2016.
Ryan refused to place any blame on Trump, but rather the Senate Democrats, who "shut down the government with no end game in sight". They want a deal on immigration - and then they'll think about reopening the government.
Republicans have said the immigration debate-the deadline to address the DACA recipients isn't until March-should be separate, and Ryan said congressional Republicans are working with Democrats on that debate. Though the impact would initially be spotty - since most agencies would be closed until Monday - the story would be certain to dominate weekend news coverage, and each party would be gambling the public would blame the other. A resolution to fund the government did not pass, sending the federal government into a shutdown.
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