House Republicans said on Wednesday that they would support a plan to finance the government for six months that would reflect the $85 billion in budget cuts from the sequester that is scheduled to begin on Friday.
The move among the conservative GOP members makes a government shutdown less likely after March 27, when the current continuing resolution runs out, The Hill
The plan was developed by House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers and presented to the full House Republican Conference, The Hill reports. It also has been endorsed by House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio.
“I have been here a long time, and I have never seen a matter of this magnitude and had no one speak against it,” the Kentucky congressman said, according to The Hill. “Everyone spoke for it that spoke. That is quite amazing to me.”
The draft continuing resolution assumes that the broad government cuts scheduled to take place on Friday is left intact — especially since conservatives see the sequester as a way to reduce deficits, The Hill reports.
But the plan excludes such controversial provisions as defunding Obamacare, which conservatives have demanded in the past.
“The fact is that if we get the [continuing resolution] at the post-sequester level that is a big win,” Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan told The Hill. He recently stepped down as the head of the Republican Study Committee (RSC).
Jordan and other conservatives said they could support the legislation even if does not defund Obamacare or a requirement that insurance plans cover contraception, The Hill reports.
“I support the approach,” Rep. Steve Scalise told The Hill. The Louisiana congressman is the current RSC chairman.
And, Rep. Raúl Labrador of Idaho, also agreed. “I think all or most conservatives will be on board with doing that,” he told The Hill.
But House Democrats are expected to oppose the resolution over the sequester — and GOP leaders are conducting a formal whip count before moving forward on whether to introduce the bill next week, The Hill reports.
Republicans can afford only about 15 defections to pass it on party votes alone, The Hill reports.
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