Washington (CNN)– Facing a rebellion from conservatives, House Republican leaders say they will now find $100 billion in spending cuts this year, as they had promised during the campaign.
"We have determined that the CR can and will reach a total of $100 billion in cuts compared to the President's request immediately – fully meeting the goal outlined in the Republican 'Pledge to America' in one fell swoop," said House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers, R-Kentucky, in a statement. A continuing resolution (CR) is a bill that funds the government.
Just a one day earlier, Rogers was close to finalizing a spending bill that fell far short of $100 billion in cuts.
But House Republican leaders have been under intense pressure from fellow conservatives, including many GOP freshmen whose election delivered the new Republican majority, to slash spending $100 billion this year.
On Wednesday night, a senior House GOP aide told CNN Republican leaders were working on finding additional cuts.
GOP sources tell CNN that during Wednesday's meeting of all House Republicans, several GOP freshmen pressed leaders to meet the $100 billion spending cut pledge.
The scramble to now meet that pledge has delayed the release of the House Republican spending bill, which was planned for Thursday. House GOP leaders intend to vote on the bill next week, which would keep the government running through the rest of this year. The current spending bill expires March 4th.
Asked about the House Republicans plans to slash billions in federal programs, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi immediately pointed out that the internal battle among Republicans is complicating the debate on Capitol Hill over spending.
"I think what they are finding out is that it's easier to talk about cutting $100 billion than it is to actually do it," Pelosi said.
The Democratic leader criticized the size of the proposed Republican cuts, saying, "a hundred billion really cuts to the heart of who we are as a country." She asked whether the GOP is willing to put the cost of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and the Pentagon budget on the table as they came up with a list of spending reductions.
Last week House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, announced cuts he is recommending for the rest of the year that would add up to $35 billion when compared to spending levels currently funding the government. Ryan's proposed cuts would be $58 billion compared to spending recommended by President Barack Obama for 2011.
Either way those cuts fall far short of the $100 billion this year that House Republicans explicitly vowed to slash in their so-called Pledge to America. Before ceding to conservative demands, House Republicans had argued there was no need to meet that goal, since the fiscal year is almost half way over now.