Freedom Caucus calls on House GOP leaders to cancel August recess

The conservative House Freedom Caucus is calling on House Republican leaders to cancel recess until the House tackles three items on its agenda: the debt ceiling, passing an ACA repeal-and-replace plan and a tax overhaul.

"We suggest that we delay any August recess that if we don't have results, we shouldn't have a recess," said Rep. Mark Meadows, R-North Carolina, chairman of the group. "It's not just a delay for political purposes or for the optics. It's a delay to get things done on behalf of the American people."

The Freedom Caucus, Meadows said, wants the House to lift the debt ceiling, finish the Obamacare replacement effort and agree on principles in a budget blueprint that could start the process for a tax overhaul. The House has passed its ACA replacement bill, but the Senate is still working on its version.

"Until we get results, there should be no recess," he said.

Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, the former chairman of the group, said, "This idea that we're going to leave here and go home for five weeks makes absolutely no sense."

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California, reportedly told the House GOP Conference Thursday morning that leadership has no plans, however, to cancel any portion of August recess.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced Tuesday that he is canceling the first two weeks of a scheduled August recess in order to tackle the GOP's unfinished agenda. Congress is typically scheduled to be on break and back in their districts for the entire month of August. The Senate was originally set to leave Washington at the end of this month. 

As far as the debt ceiling, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that Congress will have to deal with lifting it in early-to-mid October, so lawmakers have some time to do that.

And on the health care front, there's no guarantee Senate Republicans will be successful with their revised bill, which is being released Thursday. 

  • Rebecca Shabad

    Rebecca Shabad is a video reporter for CBS News Digital.