House GOP leaders delay vote on spending bill after conservatives rebel
September 11th, 2013
03:56 PM ET
11 months ago

House GOP leaders delay vote on spending bill after conservatives rebel

Washington (CNN) – House Republican leaders postponed a vote on government funding legislation until next week after many conservatives made it clear they wouldn’t back it because it doesn’t fully defund Obamacare.

The government will shut down if Congress does not approve a new annual spending plan by October 1, the start of the new federal budget year.

A vote on the bill, called a continuing resolution, to fund federal programs through December 15 had been slated for Thursday. No new date was announced.

But GOP leaders still struggled for support because many of their own members believe the language in the package on health care funding simply amounts to a "gimmick."

Since many House Republicans pledged to oppose any spending bill that doesn’t also block money for Obamacare, Republican leaders crafted a plan to pair a spending blueprint with a separate resolution barring the use of federal funds to implement new health care law.

It also would require the Senate to vote on defunding the controversial health care law before it could vote on the short-term spending bill.

But conservatives object to that strategy because the Democratic-led Senate would likely reject the resolution and simply pass the spending bill that includes money for new healthcare programs.

The politically charged health care law was approved in 2010 and upheld by the Supreme Court last year. But conservatives are now taking aim at bureaucratic and funding steps required to get the programs running this fall.

Kansas Rep. Tim Huelskamp, slammed the House GOP proposal, calling it "hocus pocus on this parliamentary maneuver. People see through it."

He vowed that there were more than enough House Republicans who wanted to tie Obamacare defunding directly to the spending bill.

"It is important that we take a stand and put forward our priority which is delaying and defunding Obamacare," Michigan Republican Rep Bill Huizenga told CNN.

Huizenga said he's not satisfied with the current strategy on the bill, but said GOP leaders haven't reached out to him to explain why they think it's the best approach.

Senior House GOP leadership aides say they are still talking to members who just returned from a five-week recess about the details of their plan and feel confident that they will pull together the votes by next week.

But those efforts are complicated by several conservative outside groups pressuring House Republicans to vote against the bill and demand a showdown with Democrats over health care funding.

House GOP leaders can't count on much help from House Democrats. The Republican bill takes into account the mandatory and sweeping federal spending cuts that took effect in March that were required under a 2011 budget deal. Democrats oppose that, insisting on higher spending levels for domestic programs.

"I am not going to vote to continue the sequester," the No. 2 House Democrat, Steny Hoyer, told reporters on Tuesday, arguing the level set in the bill was "totally unacceptable and irresponsible."

There are currently 233 House Republicans so GOP leaders can only afford to lose 17 votes in order to pass the procedural vote to bring up the spending bill.

Republicans want to avoid a protracted fight over spending that would mean different versions of the government funding bill going back and forth between the House and Senate.

They are concerned that that forced cuts would ultimately be dropped in negotiations over the measure with the Senate.

"The sequester would never survive if we ping-pong this," one senior House GOP aide told CNN.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid requested a meeting with top congressional leaders to discuss fiscal issues.

On Thursday morning, Reid is scheduled to huddle with House Speaker John Boehner, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell in Boehner's office.


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soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. The Real Tom Paine

    Nice to see the Speaker has such great control over his caucus. What a pathetic display of being led by the wacko fringe.

    September 11, 2013 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  2. Wake up People!

    Carry on GOP........

    September 11, 2013 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  3. kirk

    I truly hope they do.how long before you get it,they change our laws anytime they want.

    September 11, 2013 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    "they wouldn’t back it because it doesn’t fully defund Obamacare. "

    What part of "THAT WON'T WORK ANYWAY" don't they understand? Oh that's right...the part where they don't just get to have their way no matter what reality says.

    September 11, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  5. Leading from Behind Putin

    Shut her down!!! It'll also keep Obama from bumbling himself and us into a war with Syria. If Obamacare isn't good enough for Congress, good enough for the IRS, god enough for the unions, why is it being force fed to the American people? Stop this destruction of our healthcare system at all costs.

    September 11, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  6. Malory Archer

    The crying drunk is leading from behind! What an incompetent POS!

    September 11, 2013 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  7. Mel

    Yes, by all means, change the subject from Obama's Syria fiasco to something that he can blame Republicans for.

    September 11, 2013 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  8. Sniffit

    " If Obamacare isn't good enough for Congress, good enough for the IRS, god enough for the unions, why is it being force fed to the American people?"

    Gross mischaracterization. The ACA requires large employers to provide health insurance for their employees. That is what the government, a large employer, is doing for its employees. Same with the unions, who have negotiated their health care coverage with their employers. The fact that Congress is receiving health care coverage via its large employer is perfectly in sync with the ACA. Grow up.

    September 11, 2013 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  9. The Real Tom Paine

    -Leading from Behind Putin

    Shut her down!!! It'll also keep Obama from bumbling himself and us into a war with Syria. If Obamacare isn't good enough for Congress, good enough for the IRS, god enough for the unions, why is it being force fed to the American people? Stop this destruction of our healthcare system at all costs.
    ***************************
    Destruction? Of what? Ending the year over year double-digit increases in premiums, with no increase in coverage? This thing of which you scream about is a GOP creation, born in the hallowed halls of the Heritage Foundation and nurtured for years as an alternative to Single Payer. Do you know exactly why and how its going to destroy our healthcare system? I doubt it, since all you have are apocolyptic predictions from the Health Insurance Industry, the very people who have been ripping us off and denying us coverage for decades.

    September 11, 2013 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  10. S.B. Stein

    So, this is a good idea? I think that keeping the government running is better for the economy. To try to stop ACA via a thousand cuts isn't going to work. Get a replacement ready and then repeal it. Frankly, I haven't heard about the replacement.

    September 11, 2013 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  11. sonny chapman

    Defund Obamacare & replace it with____?

    September 11, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  12. Rudy NYC

    Since many House Republicans pledged to oppose any spending bill that doesn’t also block money for Obamacare, Republican leaders crafted a plan to pair a spending blueprint with a separate resolution barring the use of federal funds to implement new health care law.
    -------------------–
    Republicans and their pledges are a joke. You'd think the self called christians would realize that their own bible prohibits them from swearing oaths. Now the Republicans are going to have go behind closed doors and figure out to blame yet another fiasco within the conservative rank and file on the Democrats and the President.

    September 11, 2013 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  13. Sniffit'd it and it stinks

    The problem is the waivers they received to get their exemption. You need to grow up and close the gimme hand!!

    September 11, 2013 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  14. Silence DoGood

    I disagree with the way you are driving so I am going to hold onto the steering wheel so we all crash.

    September 11, 2013 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  15. Sniffit

    Shorter GOP/Teatrolls: "Excuse us while we fail at governing. Anyone have any ideas on how to get us out of the radicalized astroturf Teatroll Frankenstein monster mess we've made for ourselves? Anyone?"

    September 11, 2013 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  16. Phyllis Gwendoline Williams

    "How long will ye imagine mischief againt a man?"..."They only consult to cast him down from his excellency" –
    (Psalm 62) " God is our refuge and strength, a very present Help in Trouble" (Psalm 46: 1)

    September 11, 2013 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  17. luke,az

    It's way past time to remove the wacko doodle republicans who are ruining our country. Vote them out !

    September 11, 2013 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  18. Phyllis Gwendoline Williams

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    "How long will ye imagine mischief againt a man?"..."They only consult to cast him down from his excellency" –
    (Psalm 62) " God is our refuge and strength, a very present Help in Trouble" (Psalm 46: 1)

    September 11, 2013 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  19. Sniffit

    "Shut her down!!! It'll also keep Obama from bumbling himself and us into a war with Syria. "

    What a re you smoking? regardless of your characterization of it all, even if they were to shut down the gov't, it would not prevent Obama from exercising his powers and authority under the War Powers Act if he so chose. You're a prime example of what happens when large segments of a populace fails to understand how their gov't works.

    September 11, 2013 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  20. Hector Slagg

    Humm,
    Putin Care yes, jobs no. More and more business is dropping their health programs. That means it is loaded on to the Government. But, with no jobs who will pay for it? Print more money? OK, can I sell you a Bushel Basket? You will need it to carry your money around. Wanna know who is going to pay this fiasco? Look in the Mirror.

    September 11, 2013 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  21. Ronay Hunter-Bracey

    When you elect elementary haters (some Republicans and all Tea Party members)to make adult decisions about healthcare that is great for the country; you get this type of behavior. They know the law is great... but....not by our Black President. We all need to think and do what is best for all Americans!!!!! The best ideas should rule!!!!

    September 11, 2013 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  22. don in albuquerque

    As the GOTP fight the good fight too keep the POTUS to two terms..........

    September 11, 2013 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  23. The Real Tom Paine

    -Hector Slagg

    Humm,
    Putin Care yes, jobs no. More and more business is dropping their health programs. That means it is loaded on to the Government. But, with no jobs who will pay for it? Print more money? OK, can I sell you a Bushel Basket? You will need it to carry your money around. Wanna know who is going to pay this fiasco? Look in the Mirror.
    *********
    OK, Ray E ( Georgia), thanks for the daily deposit of your revisionist crap from your intellectual Pez Dispenser. Now, unless you actually have something worthwhile to contribute, STFU.

    September 11, 2013 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  24. Tom

    Sniffit,
    I thought Putin didn't like Obama because he's black. Now you're trusting Putin to disarm Syria – something that Obama never mentioned by the way when he spoke of the red line; he said we must strike to retaliate and punish.

    Do you even see your intellectual dishonesty? The answer is no. You don't see anything because you are too blind with your partisanship.

    September 11, 2013 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  25. O'drama ya Mama

    "If I don't get my way I'm taking my ball and I'm going home" – GOP/Tea Trolls

    September 11, 2013 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
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