Votes are there to break shutdown, but not the will
October 8th, 2013
09:10 AM ET
11 months ago

Votes are there to break shutdown, but not the will

Updated 10/9/2013 at 8:00 a.m.

Washington (CNN) – There appeared to be enough votes in the House on Wednesday to approve legislation to reopen the federal government, according to an ongoing CNN survey of House members.

CNN's vote count

All 200 Democrats and 19 Republicans support passing a continuing resolution with no additional legislative strings attached that would reopen the federal government, which has been partially closed for a week over a bitter policy dispute between Republicans and Democrats on health care. With three vacancies in 435 member House, 217 votes are currently the minimum needed for the measure to win approval in the House.

CNN's vote count appears to bear out what President Barack Obama said on Monday.

"The truth of the matter is, there are enough Republican and Democratic votes in the House of Representatives right now to end this shutdown immediately with no partisan strings attached," Obama said.

But this does not mean a vote will happen any time soon, given that these Republicans have not indicated a willingness to try to force Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, to bring a continuing resolution with no strings attached to the floor for a vote. After a meeting with Republicans on Tuesday, Republican Rep. Tom Cole of Oklahoma told CNN that the speaker told members there would not be a House vote on a "clean" government funding bill.

The clean CR is at the center of the dispute between Obama and Republicans, the latter trying to use the government shutdown as a legislative avenue to help defund the president's health care law. Many House Republicans are demanding that passage of a continuing resolution is contingent on the health care law being delayed – the first step in an effort they hope to use to dismantle it. The president and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, have said that the GOP's efforts are a non-starter.

As is the case with all vote counts, the numbers continually evolve and change by the hour and day.

Still, Boehner has maintained that there are not enough votes in the House to pass a "clean" CR.

"There are not the votes in the House to pass a clean CR," the speaker said Sunday on ABC's "This Week." "The American people expect in Washington, when we have a crisis like this, that the leaders will sit down and have a conversation. I told my members the other day, there may be a back room somewhere, but there's nobody in it."

Republican Rep. Charles Dent of Pennsylvania disagreed with the speaker's assessment. He told CNN on Monday that if the vote were to come to the floor, he believes it would pass.

"I believe a clean CR would pass comfortably," said Dent. "I'm not here to predict the number, I think it would clear the 217 vote barrier."

In response, Obama dared Boehner on Monday to prove that he doesn't have the votes for a clean continuing resolution.

"If Republicans and Speaker Boehner are saying there are not enough votes then they should prove it," Obama said. "Let the bill go to the floor, and let's see what happens. Just vote."

On Monday, as Democrats trumpeted other vote counts that appeared to show there are enough votes in the House to pass a clean government funding bill, a number of lawmakers began to walk back previous statements.

Republican Rep. Devin Nunes of California was one of those lawmakers. After telling Huffington Post and others that he supported a government funding bill with no strings attached, his spokesman said Monday that "that was never the case."

"He does not support a clean CR, does not support it, does not advocate it," said Jack Langer, a spokesman for Nunes.

Republicans Leonard Lance of New Jersey and Randy Forbes of Virginia, who other news outlets report have supported a clean government funding bill, told CNN on Monday that they did not back the measure.

"Reports that Randy Forbes supports a 'clean' CR are not true," a Forbes said. "This was misrepresented in a story by the Virginian Pilot (newspaper), which subsequently was picked up by HuffPo and other national outlets – none of which bothered to contact our office to verify."

Instead, Forbes has introduced legislation that would fund all of the government except Obamcare, the aide said.

Not all Republicans moved away from voting for a government funding bill with no strings attached.

Late on Monday, Republican Rep. David Reichert of Washington said he would "continue to vote for any legislation that keeps the federal government open."

Likewise on Tuesday, Republican Rep. Mike Coffman of Colorado announced he supported a government funding bill with no strings attached in a Denver Post opinion-editorial and Republican Rep. Walter B. Jones of North Carolina said he wished the House "would pass a clean CR" during an interview with MSNBC.

Other Republican members, like Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart of Florida, would not confirm a report from the Miami Herald that said the lawmaker would support a clean resolution.

"The president needs to sit down and negotiate with the speaker," Cesar Gonzalez, a spokesman for Diaz-Balart, said. "In the meantime, the congressman does not think it is wise to negotiate through the press."

The 19 Republicans who support a government funding bill with no strings attached are:

Walter B. Jones, R-North Carolina: Said during an interview with MSNBC that he wished the House "would pass a clean CR."

Mike Coffman, R-Colorado: Announced he supported a government funding bill with no strings attached in a Denver Post opinion-editorial.

Tim Griffin, R-Arkansas: "Tweeted the he would support a clean government funding bill."

Bill Young, R-Florida: A spokesman tells CNN that Young would support a clean government funding bill.

Dennis Ross, R-Florida: A spokeswoman told CNN Ross would support a one-year government funding bill at sequestration levels with no strings attached.

Mike Simpson, R-Idaho: Statement: "Similar to Sen. Rand Paul, I could support a very short-term clean CR, perhaps one or two weeks, while we continue to negotiate on a longer-term bill."

Frank LoBiondo, R-New Jersey: LoBiondo penned an editorial in the Philadelphia Inquirer that said he supported a clean government funding bill.

Jon Runyan, R- New Jersey: Runyan penned an editorial in the Philadelphia Inquirer that said he supported a clean government funding bill.

Pete King, R-New York: Told CNN he supports passing a clean government funding bill.

Michael Grimm, R-New York: Grimm told CNN he would support a clean government funding bill.

Jim Gerlach, R-Penn.: A spokesman told CNN that Gerlach would support a clean government funding bill if it came to the floor.

Pat Meehan, R-Penn.: Statement on October 1: "I believe it’s time for the House to vote for a clean, short-term funding bill."

Michael Fitzpatrick, R-Penn.: Fitzpatrick penned an editorial in the Philadelphia Inquirer that said he supported a clean government funding bill.

Lou Barletta, R-Penn.: A spokesman told CNN that Barletta would vote yes if a clean government funding bill came to the floor. On Tuesday morning, the spokesman said while Barletta is now focused on passing a compromise that includes repealing of the medical device tax, it is fair to include him as a yes vote for a funding bill with no strings attached.

Charles Dent, R-Penn.: Told CNN he supports a clean government funding bill. "I think now it's imperative that we just fund the government," he said.

Robert Wittman, R-Virgina: A spokeswoman tell CNN Wittman would vote yes on a clean government funding bill.

Scott Rigell, R-Virginia: Told CNN on October 1 that he supported passing a clean government funding bill.

Frank Wolf, R-Virginia: A spokesman tells CNN that Wolf will support a clean government funding bill.

David Reichert, R-Washington: October 7 statement: "I will continue to vote for any legislation that keeps the federal government open."

– CNN's Laura Koran and Deirdre Walsh contributed to this report


Filed under: Government Shutdown
soundoff (981 Responses)
  1. jerseydevils76

    Dems can do wrong. Where's Biden? President showed up after the fact to say there will be no negotiating. But its all Republicans fault? Hypocrits.

    October 8, 2013 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  2. Anonymous

    There are also enough votes in the Senate to end it the other way.

    October 8, 2013 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  3. vethusbandfather

    This article is patently false. Most of the Rep's you have cited say they would agree to a 'short-term' clean CR. Some have specifically stated that it would be no more than 1-2 weeks. This is not the same as passing a full CR and is something that the President and Harry Reid have already said they will not agree to. This is just another sad attempt to place blame on Repbulicans.

    October 8, 2013 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  4. mark

    keep carrying that water CNN

    October 8, 2013 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  5. Shane

    Not voting = treason against the United States.

    October 8, 2013 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  6. Malory Archer

    Its about time

    Boehner is only doing what he was elected to do. Follow the will of the voters that put him in office.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    In other words, a small, gerrymandered district in Ohio is holding the rest of the nation hostage. Yeah, it's well past time for crybaby to take the ENTIRE nation into account – unless his gerrymandered little district would be willing to foot the bill for the ENTIRE government. It's only fair; if they're the only people who get to be represented then they should be the only people to pay for it.

    October 8, 2013 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  7. SolidGop

    Thanks for posting the names, lots of people are waiting to TAKE THEM ON in the Primary.

    October 8, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  8. Gladys McDonald

    The Speaker needs to step down!!!!!!!!

    October 8, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  9. Misterwire

    They (Republicans) accrued this bill before Obama care became law of the land. They should not expect the Whitehouse to invite them to a dinner to discuss making payments. Are they telling Americans who owe credit card bills to not make their payments unless the banks invite them to dinner and shower them with French Fries. Wow!
    I guess, this is a new form of capitalism but they must not forget that it has cost them two elections already and will continue unless they grow up and end kindergarten mentality politics.

    October 8, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  10. JLM

    "Here's more simple truth- the GOP will get the blame for this anyway- you've already lost because Boehner put himself above party, and the GOP put party above America"

    The other Repulbicans are caving in for reelection. They are the ones who don't care about America. If the spending continues, in 10 years (maybe less) I cannot wait to say "I told you so". I am saving for that day hoep you all are too because the US wil lrun out of money and will not be able to give you free stuff any longer.

    October 8, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  11. Ralph_in_FL

    Boehner is too afraid of the Tea Party.

    October 8, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  12. Malory Archer

    America First

    The House controls 1/2 of 1/3rd of government.

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    The LOWER HOUSE no less!

    October 8, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  13. Tom101

    Boehner and the GOP, the new face of Terror. Imagine, in their fanaticism holding cancer-ridden children hostage!

    October 8, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  14. J Robinson

    What's happening here is similar to what would happen if Congress decided not to continue funding military operations. It is, in fact, beginning to look more and more like a war. There is significant historical precedent for Tea Party tactics if you read Jefferson and Madison.
    Jefferson had cause for satisfaction about the Constitution's arrangement of the powers of sword and purse. The power of the purse supplemented the Declaration of War power by allowing Congress to control war powers by specifying spending objectives or otherwise restricting spending ex ante. It also compensated for the possible failure of antecedent controls by giving Congress the ex post power of "supply" – appropriations for supporting military forces – which allows the legislature to determine how long U.S. participation in war may continue.

    October 8, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  15. The Elephant in The Room

    I would like to see a lawsuit filed against the 435 members of the House of Representatives [that exempts all Democrats & these 22 Republicans] for DAMAGES as a result of their actions. The Plantiff would be the US Taxpayer. The damages would be in thew BILLIONS. I think the serious impact of the default on true costs are lost on these dumb, ignorant, stupid republicans. We need to threaten their financial well being.

    October 8, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  16. kevin

    So many posts dismissing this article as Liberal Bias reporting. If you folks could comprehend, it is clearly not that. CNN just stated facts. They listed names and sources. Please get out of your bubble or crawl in so deep no one need hear from you again. I actually am upset with some of the media trying too hard not to appear "liberal", they are hurting the country.

    October 8, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  17. Bob

    CNN, check your facts. Peter King says you are a liar. That's only 216.

    Not enough votes.

    October 8, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  18. dot 8

    I beginning to wonder if Boehner even cares about the American people and our nation.

    October 8, 2013 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  19. Pastor Joseph Allen Wolfe

    The president needs to demand, and threaten his Job, because if this does not pass, that one man will have blood on his hands, because a lot of citizens will react out of fear, and anger, in the result, police will be fore to approach with extreme predigest! They will have no choice but shoot to kill like they did at Capital Hill! THIS NEEDS TO STOP OR ELSE WE ALL WILL DIE BY THE LAW MAN'S HANDS!

    October 8, 2013 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  20. Deeper Look

    The government is too big. Clearly this is a way to prove it. I hope the speaker stands strong and doesn't allow a vote. Bill Young and the other Florida Republicans should be ousted. They are turncoats – and of the many practical ways to fix out national debt problem – no one is offering anything from the Dem side. Only more expenses and raising the ceiling of debt. That is crazier by far than Obamacare and Obamacare is only a further catalyst to our national debt. I says keep the Government locked up until reasonable cuts are truly made.

    October 8, 2013 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  21. Fred Garvin

    How many Republicans voted for Obamacare?

    October 8, 2013 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  22. Malory Archer

    chuck

    If anything, this shows how the U.S. Government is too big, and how crybaby and the rethugs rule by fear, and crisis.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    FIFY.

    October 8, 2013 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  23. sheppard

    boehner has allowed the tea party to blackmail him – he has no backbone and that ship of fools is sinking; taking the gop with it... Shameful.

    October 8, 2013 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  24. Alan

    This has become a big joke. We ARE going to pay the federal employees after the fact. There is NO money being saved, just payments being pushed out. In the meantime, revenues are being lost. I think that means the deficit might be going in the wrong direction. OK only in a tiny way, but it is the principle. We're out here working and losing money in our 401Ks while the market is dropping. About time for government to be on 401Ks and the affordable care plans!

    October 8, 2013 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  25. Malory Archer

    rc

    crybaby and a small group of unruly teabag toddlers would rather sink the US than to do what is right for America.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    FIFY.

    October 8, 2013 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
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