Congress STILL in a bind: Conservative Republicans refuse to pass bills until Kevin McCarthy gives in to their demands – including tougher spending caps
- Three GOP aides to lawmakers involved in the blockade confirmed they had not heard from Chairman Kevin McCarthy over the weekend
- McCarthy sent lawmakers home early last week when 11 hardline Tories staged a vote on a normally mundane rule to advance gas cooker legislation
- The rules committee is due to prepare five bills for the House floor on Monday, including Rep. Andrew Clyde’s resolution to overturn a Biden gun reinforcement rule
The House remains at a standstill and no progress was made over the weekend on the deadlock that has kept legislation from moving since Wednesday.
Three GOP aides to lawmakers involved in the blockade confirmed they had not heard from Chairman Kevin McCarthy over the weekend and were waiting to hear what he would offer them in exchange for allowing votes.
McCarthy sent lawmakers home early last week when 11 hardline Tories staged a normally unremarkable vote to push through gas stove legislation. Many of the 11 have said they will continue to block any legislation from advancing in the House until they get written commitments from the president.
But management clearly assumes the kerfuffle will be resolved this week, prompting more votes this week with a rules committee meeting on Monday night. Plenary is due to vote at 6.30pm on a motion to reconsider the gas cooker bill rule.
If that passes, the House can move forward with a final vote on the four bills aimed at stopping the Biden administration from restricting gas stoves.
Three GOP aides to lawmakers involved in the blockade confirmed they had not heard from Chairman Kevin McCarthy over the weekend and were waiting to hear what he would offer them in exchange for allowing the votes.
McCarthy sent lawmakers home early last week when 11 hardline Tories staged a vote on a normally mundane rule to advance gas cooker legislation
The rules committee is set to prepare five bills for the House floor, including Rep. Andrew Clyde’s resolution to overturn a Biden administration gun splint rule.
Clyde claimed leaders had threatened to block the resolution from passing the House floor if he voted no on the rule to advance the Fiscal Responsibility Act, the brokered deal on the limit of the debt. Now, the gun splint resolution is slated for a vote in the full House on Tuesday.
The group’s exact demands have been hard to pin down, but they were bubbling over the deal brokered between McCarthy and President Biden that passed the House earlier this month.
Some say they would be happy with a commitment to cap spending at fiscal year 2022 levels during the supply process, where the House hopes to pass 12 separate spending bills.
A 2022 cap was part of the House GOP’s Limit Save Grow Act, but the final deal left non-defense discretionary spending at 2023 levels in 2024.
Others, like Rep. Lauren Boebert, complained that leaders did not allow the debt ceiling agreement to be subject to an open rule – meaning rank and file members were not not allowed to put amendments to the vote. Some members said McCarthy had promised them that he would present all laws under an open rule.
Others were unhappy that more Democrats voted for the final package than Republicans, 171 to 149 – and claimed McCarthy had promised not to introduce legislation that would have more Democratic votes than Republicans. The speaker, however, boasted that two-thirds of the Republican conference backed the bill.
McCarthy made a number of behind-the-scenes promises to members of the Freedom Caucus who opposed his presidency in the 15-ballot process that won him the gavel. These promises, however, were not written, and it is unclear what commitments McCarthy made and did not make.
Some are calling for a commitment not to spend on programs whose authorizations have expired.
“We have 11,118 programs, OK, 11,118 programs that are not allowed within the federal government…That means when they passed a program like the Endangered Species Act of 1973, it had a sunset of five years of sunshine. It stopped, ended, in five years unless it was reauthorized. So, in 1978, it was reauthorized. It hasn’t been reauthorized since, and every year we increase spending on the Endangered Species Act,’ Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., said in a speech this weekend. end.
If House Republicans can work through the intra-party feud, they will not only advance on bills preventing the Biden administration from regulating gas stoves and gun straps, but also on the anti-Reins Act. regulations and the Restoration of the Separation of Powers Act, designed to limit the authority of federal agencies.