House Speaker Mike Johnson unveiled his plan to avert a government shutdown, but opposition, including from his own party, could jeopardize an outcome that lawmakers and advocates warn would devastate Black and other vulnerable communities.
On Saturday, Johnson, R-La., revealed a two-step plan that would fund the government until early next year. The first bill would include funding for Veterans Affairs, the Departments of Energy, transportation, housing, and agriculture until Jan.19. The second bill would extend funding for the rest of the government until Feb. 2.
“I really don’t understand what the thinking is here,” said U.S. Rep. Glenn Ivey, D-Md., who noted the bill does not include provisions for emergency supplemental funding for Israel, Ukraine, and aid to Gaza.
Ivey told theGrio that Johnson’s plan is “an unnecessary gimmick at a time when we really don’t have time to be testing out new approaches.”
He added, “We’ve only got a few days before the government shuts down on Friday, and this approach appears to make it twice as hard to get something done.”
Some House Republicans feel the same way as the Maryland lawmaker and took to social media to blast Johnson’s plan.
Rep. Chip Roy, R-Texas, a member of the right-wing House Freedom Caucus, wrote on X, “My opposition to the clean CR just announced by the Speaker to the House GOP cannot be overstated.”
“Funding Pelosi level spending & policies for 75 days – for future ‘promises,’” he added.
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., also took to X, writing, “I voted No to both CRs before, and I’m voting NO to this clean CR.”
She continued, “We need to finish approps and the Senate needs to do their job. NO MONEY TO UKRAINE! CLOSE THE BORDER! STOP THE WEAPONIZED GOVERNMENT! IMPEACH BIDEN, MAYORKAS, WRAY, GARLAND, AND GRAVES!”
Given the division within the GOP, the House speaker will likely need support from House Democrats to pass the measure by Friday’s deadline.
Ivey told theGrio that acquiring Democratic support to prevent a government shutdown has been a “pattern” in recent months.
“They needed to get Democrats’ votes for the last vote to avert a government shutdown, and it may be true as well for this,” he said.
House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., told theGrio House Democrats are doing what they can to prevent a government shutdown.
“We’re going to do everything possible to make sure that we avoid an extreme MAGA government shutdown,” said the party’s first Black leader in Congress.
“It will be reckless. It is designed to hurt everyday Americans all across the country, and we have to avoid it,” Jeffries continued.
Ivey said a government shutdown would “hurt the economy across the board and would threaten our safety.
“You’ve got people who are government employees, that includes troops, southwest border patrol, people who get veterans or social security benefits,” he said. “TSA, for people who are traveling, it’s just a ripple effect.”
“We don’t need SNAP recipients to lose any access to their food benefits,” added Congressman Ivey. “We don’t need kids going hungry just because the speaker and some of these Republicans are playing games with the [budget].”
Speaker Johnson plans to present the continuing resolution for a floor vote on Tuesday.
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