Government Funding Bill to Be Released Tuesday, McCarthy Says

A stopgap spending bill that is expected to extend government funding until the spring will be introduced on Tuesday, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy told reporters Monday.

Congressional GOP leaders aim to wrap up the lame-duck session by the end of the week. The only must-pass item on the agenda is funding the government, which is set to expire on Friday.

“It’s just now getting finished up,” the California Republican said Monday on Capitol Hill. “I think we’re very close.”

The legislation would put government operations on autopilot until after President-elect Donald Trump takes office. McCarthy declined to go into detail about the length of the spending measure, though several GOP lawmakers said last week it would likely go through April or May. 

One new rider up for discussion, according to The Washington Post and others, would allow Senate Republicans to grease the wheels in 2017 for Trump’s pick to lead the Defense Department, retired Gen. James Mattis. The 2013 Marine Corps retiree needs a waiver to serve, as current law dictates seven years in civilian life before taking the office. Attaining that waiver would require a 60-vote threshold in the chamber, and some Senate Democrats have voiced concerns over the prospect. Including that waiver in the funding bill would allow Mattis to be confirmed with a simple 51-vote majority.

The House is also expected to consider a water resources bill before the holiday recess.

Morning Consult