House approves stopgap budget measure to keep federal government open
The U.S. House of Representatives voted 230-201, largely along party lines, to approve a stopgap funding measure to keep the federal government open until at least mid-December.
The Senate had passed the continuing resolution in a 72-25 vote late Thursday, so with the House passage, it now heads to President Biden’s desk for his signature, which is expected to come later in the day on Friday.
Not that anybody is happy that, yet again, Republicans and Democrats have proven themselves unable to come to terms on an annual budget by the Oct. 1 new fiscal year deadline.
“The American people are all too familiar with this stopgap, Groundhog Day process that involves narrowly avoiding a government shutdown year after year,” Seventh District Democrat Abigail Spanberger said. “Democrats and Republicans must work together to improve our budget procedures — because families in Virginia and across our country deserve the peace of mind that their lawmakers will keep the government open and protect their jobs, livelihoods, and access to government services.”
“The passage of a continuing resolution is not cause for celebration. It was a vote to avoid a government shutdown, which would threaten our national security, jeopardize our commitment to Ukraine, negatively impact the economy, and devastate Coastal Virginia,” Second District Democrat Elaine Luria said.
“Subverting the normal appropriations process and relying on a patchwork of continuing resolutions severely impacts the ability of our military and defense industrial base to plan investments in our national security and counter the threats we face around the world,” Luria said. “The American people are better served when both sides come together to pass a responsible, on-time budget. I remain hopeful that the House and Senate can find common ground to produce a final omnibus funding package before the new December deadline that prioritizes defense spending and provides our government with the basic resources it needs to function.”
First District Republican Rob Wittman was among his party members voting against the resolution.
“Today’s passage of a continuing resolution – an irresponsible stopgap measure – is an unfortunate reminder of Washington’s ‘budget by crisis’ mentality,” Wittman said. “We can’t continue to find ourselves in these completely avoidable situations, especially when passing a budget and funding the government are the most basic responsibilities of Congress. We are already facing incredible economic hardships as a nation, and continuing resolutions only increase this burden. Under a Continuing Resolution, all spending remains the same, meaning that we can’t fund new programs, cut outdated ones, or plan for the future. Simply put: continuing resolutions are a short-term solution to a long-term problem, and we need to change this culture in Washington.
“Good governing is possible, but it will take commitment from members of Congress on both sides of the aisle to come together and agree on a long-term spending solution that does not sacrifice our economic growth. The new normal of passing a Continuing Resolution to avoid a government shutdown rather than doing our job is unacceptable. I remain committed to working with my colleagues to passing a permanent solution that will provide a path to fiscal certainty for our economy,” Wittman said.
Sixth District Republican Ben Cline also voted against the legislation, and used his statement on his vote to attack Democrats.
“Virginians are facing an inflation crisis, a fentanyl crisis resulting from an open border, an energy crisis, and a crime crisis – all created by President Biden and Democrats’ radical agenda,” Cline said. “Instead of confronting these crises, Democrats are kicking the can down the road until after the election so they can have an opportunity to retain control. I voted against this legislation because Americans cannot afford two more years of Democrats’ taxpayer-funded, out-of-touch, inflationary policies.”