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House Speaker Kevin McCarthy says "I don't see the support in the House" for Senate measure to fund government

Shutdown becoming increasingly likely
Government shutdown increasingly likely as hard-line Republicans oppose bipartisan bill 02:26

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said Wednesday the Senate's proposed continuing resolution to fund the government is unlikely to advance in the House as a shutdown grows more likely. 

"I don't see the support in the House" for the Senate bill, McCarthy told reporters. 

The Senate on Tuesday unveiled a stopgap funding measure that would fund the government through Nov. 17 and was negotiated on a bipartisan basis. 

The Senate measure, which advances a House-passed bill to reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration, includes $6.2 billion in Ukraine aid and $6 billion for natural disasters. The bill would be the vehicle for a continuing resolution.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on Wednesday said McCarthy is letting "MAGA radicals" drive his decisions, and said the bipartisan stopgap measure is "the only way to avoid a shutdown." 

House Republicans have also indicated they want to force the White House and Democrats to come up with a new plan on border security. McCarthy said Tuesday that night he would not support any continuing resolution without border security provisions. Ukraine aid is also a sticking point for a group of right-wing Republicans. 

House Lawmakers Work On Funding Deal As Possible Government Shutdown Looms
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy listens to reporters' questions following a House Republican caucus meeting at the U.S. Capitol on September 27, 2023 in Washington, DC. Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Rep. Bob Good of Virginia, a member of the House Freedom Caucus, told reporters Wednesday that McCarthy told the GOP conference that he would not take up the Senate's proposed continuing resolution, or CR. Other Republicans shared similar sentiments. 

"My sense is the Senate CR is dead on arrival," said GOP Rep. Dusty Johnson of South Dakota. "I just don't get the sense that there's any meaningful support in the Republican conference for that Senate CR."

Both the White House and Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell have endorsed the Senate's stopgap spending measure. 

"We can take the standard approach and fund the government for six weeks at the current rate of operations or we can shut the government down in exchange for zero meaningful progress on policy," McConnell said Wednesday. 

McConnell also noted that those concerned about border security would be forcing Border Patrol and Immigration and Customs Enforcement employees to work without pay if the government shuts down. 

McCarthy, meanwhile, reiterated Wednesday that he plans to have the House take up a continuing resolution on Friday, ahead of the hard deadline Saturday night to approve new funding. If new funding is not approved, the government will shut down while the House considers its full-year appropriations bills. 

McCarthy said Tuesday that his measure would include border security provisions and would drop funding for Ukraine.

"If they want to put focus on Ukraine and not focus on the southern border, I think their priorities are backwards," McCarthy said Tuesday about the Senate measure. 

With Republicans' narrow majority in the House and Democrats united in opposition to deep spending cuts, McCarthy can only afford to lose four votes to pass any bill. The support of Senate Republican leadership for the stopgap measure puts pressure on McCarthy — and could force him to get Democratic support to pass it. However, far-right members of his party have threatened to oust him if he were to do that. 

In an effort to appease hard-line Republicans, the House on Tuesday voted to advance four bills that would fund the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, State and Agriculture for another year. Even if the bills pass the House, they are not likely to be considered in the Senate.

If both chambers can't pass a bill to fund the government by 11:59 p.m. on Saturday night, then the government will shut down. A government shutdown will cause thousands of federal employees to go without pay, and federal services that are deemed non-essential will be closed. 

"The American people need our Republican friends in the House of Representatives to do their job, President Biden said Wednesday. "Fund the government." 

Ellis Kim, Willie James Inman, Alan He and Alejandro Alvarez contributed to this report. 

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