House Passes Funding Bills as Lawmakers Scramble to Beat Friday Deadline

Evelyn Hockstein/Reuters
Evelyn Hockstein/Reuters

The U.S. House of Representatives passed several bills on Wednesday that would fund the federal government through September—part of a last-ditch effort to avoid a partial shutdown before a Friday deadline.

A total of six bills are now on their way to the Senate, where they are expected to pass in the coming days.

The $467.5 billion package was unveiled Sunday by a bipartisan group of lawmakers following a contentious negotiation process. The far-right House Freedom Caucus opposed the bills and castigated Speaker Mike Johnson for daring to work with Democrats—saying in a statement that members wanted to use the threat of a shutdown to force Democrats to make concessions on immigration enforcement.

“As with other recent spending bills, it is likely this omnibus receives more Democrat than Republican support,” the statement said. “House Freedom Caucus Members urge all Republicans to oppose both halves of the omnibus.”

Johnson, however, cheered the legislation as a win for conservatives.

“House Republicans secured key conservative policy victories, rejected left-wing proposals, and imposed sharp cuts to agencies and programs critical to President Biden’s agenda,” he said in his own statement.

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The package provides funding for at least eight federal departments, including Agriculture, Commerce, Justice, Energy, Interior, Veterans Affairs, Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, as well as the Food and Drug Administration.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said that the chamber hopes to pass the bills by Friday’s deadline—saying the process is off to a “very good start.”

“As soon as the House sends the appropriations bills over to the Senate, I will put these bills on the floor,” Schumer said of the package on Tuesday. “But the clock is ticking and because of the State of the Union on Thursday, we need to cooperate to move extra fast to get these bills through. Between now and Friday, the watchwords for the Senate will be ‘cooperation’ and ‘speed.’”

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