Legislative Update for Week Ending December 5, 2014

Legislative Update for Week Ending December 5, 2014

This week, lawmakers continued working on legislation to keep the government funded past December 11th.

Work on Spending Bill Continues

This week, appropriators in the House and Senate revealed a unique proposal to prevent a government shutdown on December 11th. It would fund the entire federal government through the remainder of the fiscal year, except for the Department of Homeland Security. That agency would only receive funding through the next three months, which should buy lawmakers enough time to solidify a legislative response to President Obama’s recent immigration orders.

The so-called “cromnibus,” as many on Capitol Hill are calling it, seems to be a compromise that most lawmakers will be able to accept. However, some have been outspoken about their opposition since it does not include a policy rider that would explicitly prohibit the funding of the President’s executive orders. Sen. Ted Cruz (TX), stated this week: “Congress should stand up and use the power of the purse to say we will fund the operation of the government but we will not allocate taxpayer dollars to lawless and illegal amnesty.”

Despite resistance from some lawmakers, appropriators in the House and Senate say that their work on the “cromnibus” is continuing. According to Harold Rogers (KY-5), Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, negotiations are “on schedule,” and the bill should come to the floor by early next week. If it fails to get the necessary votes, lawmakers will likely adopt a continuing resolution to provide the government with short-term funding. At this point, leaders are saying that a government shutdown is not something that they’re willing to consider.

As negotiations continue over the coming days, TSCL will continue to monitor them closely and encourage lawmakers to avoid another shutdown on December 11th, since it would likely have a negative impact on Social Security and Medicare benefits. For updates, visit the Legislative News section of our website.