Speaker Johnson rolls out plan to avoid government shutdown, prevent ‘spending monstrosity’

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Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., unveiled a short-term spending plan on Saturday aimed at averting a government shutdown when federal funding runs out on Nov. 17.

The two-step proposal would fund part of the government until Jan. 19, and the rest until Feb. 2. A senior GOP aide told Fox News Digital on Friday that they are aiming for a Tuesday House-wide vote.

Supporters of a staggered short-term bill, known as a continuing resolution (CR), argue it puts targeted pressure on lawmakers to achieve their goals at an incremental rate. 

Johnson’s CR includes no additional funding for Ukraine or Israel, but it does extend key programs under the Farm Bill, another must-pass piece of legislation that expires this year. 

The speaker said his plan would avoid forcing lawmakers to make rushed decisions up against the holiday season by extending funding through the new year. He also championed its exclusion of President Biden’s $106 billion supplemental aid request for Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan and the southern border. 

In a one-page summary of the plan, Johnson’s office said the approach would ‘prevent another irresponsible ‘Christmas omnibus’ spending monstrosity.’

‘This two-step continuing resolution is a necessary bill to place House Republicans in the best position to fight for conservative victories,’ Johnson said in a statement after it was unveiled.

‘The bill will stop the absurd holiday-season omnibus tradition of massive, loaded up spending bills introduced right before the Christmas recess. Separating out the CR from the supplemental funding debates places our conference in the best position to fight for fiscal responsibility, oversight over Ukraine aid, and meaningful policy changes at our Southern border.’

The plan first forces lawmakers to reckon with some of the traditionally less controversial appropriations bills — those concerning military construction and Veterans Affairs; Agriculture; Energy and Water; Transportation and Housing and Urban Development. The remaining eight appropriations bills must be worked out by Feb. 2.

House Republicans have pledged to pass 12 individual spending bills for the next fiscal year as opposed to a mammoth ‘omnibus’ funding bill, which the previous Democratically-controlled Congress passed last year. 

A majority of Republican lawmakers, including Johnson allies, have signaled they understand a CR is needed to give themselves more time to cobble together a deal and avoid a shutdown. 

But some GOP hardliners are already coming out against it for extending the ‘omnibus’ priorities they opposed.

‘My opposition to the clean CR just announced by the Speaker to the [House GOP] cannot be overstated. Funding [former Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.] level spending & policies for 75 days – for future ‘promises,’’ House Freedom Caucus Policy Chair Chip Roy, R-Texas, wrote on X after a House GOP members-only conference call.

Fox News’ Chad Pergram contributed to this report

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