McCarthy Pushes for Short Stopgap to Avoid October Shutdown

  • McCarthy wants a stopgap no later than early December
  • Speaker plans more spending votes, he tells members on call

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Speaker Kevin McCarthy told House Republicans on a conference call Monday he expects a stopgap funding measure to avert a shutdown at the end of September, though he’s pushing for the continuing resolution to be short, a person familiar with the call said, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss a private call.

McCarthy (R-Calif.) said to members that he’s already told Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) a continuing resolution to fund the government can’t run beyond early December, the person said, as McCarthy aims to avoid a standoff shortly before Christmas.

House Republicans passed their Military Construction-VA spending bill — one of the 12 annual funding measures — before leaving for August recess. McCarthy told members he wants more floor votes on appropriations bills in September, but he’s not yet sure which ones, the person said.

The debt-limit deal enacted earlier this summer included a provision that would automatically cut all discretionary spending by 1% if Congress relies on a stopgap measure to fund any portion of the government beyond Dec. 31. That provision makes any late-December theatrics — which have become common in recent years — more risky than usual.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jack Fitzpatrick in Washington at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Michaela Ross at; Angela Greiling Keane at

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