Congressional Republican leaders are working in lockstep with their Democrat counterparts to pass a massive taxpayer-funded spending bill before the end of the year. The move comes immediately after a dozen Senate Republicans helped their Democrat colleagues advance a bill permitting radical leftists to wage legal war against religious Americans who value the true meaning of marriage.
After meeting with President Joe Biden at the White House on Tuesday, House and Senate leaders announced they had reached an agreement on the need for Congress to pass an omnibus spending package before the government’s current funding runs out on Dec. 16. Unlike a continuing resolution (CR), which would fund the federal government for a few months, an omnibus bill would provide funding for the entire 2023 fiscal year.
“The best option by far is for both parties to come to the table and work on a yearlong funding bill, not a continuing resolution,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., agreed, adding that “there’s widespread agreement that we’d be better off with an omnibus than a CR.”
Similarly to McConnell, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., who is likely to become speaker when Republicans assume control of the House in January, also expressed a preference for an omnibus package, but noted that he has “no problem” advancing a CR and “coming back in January” to hash out a long-term bill that includes funding for Republican priorities.
Despite their consensus on the desire for a larger funding package, however, one of the remaining areas of contention among congressional leaders is the bill’s price tag and allocation of funds. While House Democrats are seeking to increase discretionary spending to $1.6 trillion, Senate Republican leaders are focused on raising defense spending and “providing more aid to Ukraine.”
If Congress passes the bill before the end of the year, any and all leverage an incoming Republican House majority would have in securing critical spending priorities would be shelved until the end of 2023.
“I think it makes absolutely no sense for a lame-duck Congress to pass Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer’s appropriations bills,” said Texas GOP Sen. Ted Cruz. “[I]f a handful of Senate Republicans decide their outgoing act is to rubber-stamp Nancy Pelosi’s spending priorities, that would be a gross abdication of responsibility and also an affront to the voters who just voted to give Republicans a majority in the House.”
In addition to Cruz, Republican Sens. Mike Lee of Utah and Rick Scott of Florida have also publicly raised concerns over a potential omnibus.
The decision by Republican leadership to throw in with their Democrat colleagues’ spending shenanigans is the second slap in the face to conservative voters this week after 12 GOP senators crossed party lines on Tuesday to help Senate Democrats pass the wrongly named “Respect for Marriage Act,” which seeks to codify same-sex marriage into federal law. As The Federalist’s Jordan Boyd reported, the legislation would enable LGBT activists, as well as the highly political Department of Justice, to use the legal system as a weapon to target and harass religious Americans who believe firmly in God’s definition of marriage.
Among the Republicans who voted “yes” for the bill were Sens. Roy Blunt of Missouri, Richard Burr and Thom Tillis of North Carolina, Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, Susan Collins of Maine, Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming, Rob Portman of Ohio, Mitt Romney of Utah, Dan Sullivan and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Joni Ernst of Iowa, and Todd Young of Indiana.