By a vote of 336 to 95, with 209 Democrats and 127 Republicans supporting it, the House passed another stopgap government funding bill. Ninety-three Republicans and two Democrats were opposed to the measure.
The measure extends government funding through mid-January and now heads to the Senate, where a bipartisan group of supporters has expressed support for the stopgap bill.
The current bill gives lawmakers in both the House and the Senate more time to agree on an agreement regarding more detailed spending bills that cover everything from funding for scientific research to the Armed Forces.
House Republicans still have a lot of work to do, as 12 more appropriations bills need to get through House and Senate negotiators. The continuing resolution (CR) also gives agitated lawmakers, who have been in session for 10 straight weeks, a chance to take a short break.
"I've been drinking from Niagara Falls the last three weeks. This will allow everybody to go home for a couple of days for Thanksgiving, everybody cool off," said House Speaker Mike Johnson. "Members have been here … for 10 weeks. This place is a pressure cooker. And so I think everybody can go home, we can come back, reset."
"Right now, our loving, caring representatives, what are they doing? They're coming up with some kind of a stopgap measure yet again, to kick the can down the road," commented financial expert Gregory Mannarino, who warned that this ongoing ordeal is already affecting U.S. markets and could end up making the government bankrupt. (Related: Doug Casey: Entitlements, excessive defense spending and high federal debt interest push U.S. to brink of bankruptcy.)
"They can't come up with a budget… Honestly, when are people gonna say 'Enough?'" he added. "What are we paying taxes for? Why are they getting paid [when they] can't get it together?"
President Joe Biden is expected to sign the stopgap funding bill into law before the current temporary funding measure for federal agencies expires at midnight on Friday, Nov. 17.
The stopgap bill, referred to as House Speaker Mike Johnson's "laddered continuing resolution," continues to fund the government – including the Agriculture, Transportation, Housing and Urban Development and Veterans Affairs departments – through Jan. 19, 2024. It also provides additional funding for the Defense Department and other remaining parts of the government through Feb. 2.
Legislators referred to the CR as a "clean" bill that does not impose any spending cuts or push forward any contentious policy provisions that could alienate Democrats. It also does not include supplemental spending packages covering things like additional military aid for Israel and Ukraine, other foreign aid, or border security.
"House Democrats have repeatedly articulated that any continuing resolution must be set at the fiscal year 2023 spending level, be devoid of harmful cuts and free of extreme right-wing policy riders," said Congressional Democratic leaders in a joint statement. "The continuing resolution before the House today meets that criteria and we will support it."
Watch this video featuring Gregory Mannarino discussing the government budget crisis and the possibility of America going bankrupt.