Congress Passes Two-Week Spending Bill to Avoid Dec. 9 Shutdown

Count the Ways How GOP Tax Plans Would Reward Rich Families

AP Manuel Balce Ceneta

From left, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wis., House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., meet with reporters after House Republicans held a closed-door strategy session as the deadline looms to pass a spending bill to fund the government by week's end, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017.

Top Republicans delayed a planned House vote on a short-term budget bill Tuesday to give themselves time to quell party divisions and avert a partial government shutdown by the weekend.

Jordan and a handful of his fellow Freedom Caucus colleagues gave Republican leadership a scare Monday night when they threatened to vote against sending tax reform legislation to a conference committee. They have yet to say what they will do.

But hours before Trump was to bargain with congressional leaders at the White House over longer-term spending decisions, Meadows said the conservatives would oppose any agreement they feel allows excessive federal spending.

McConnell, R-Ky., said he was hoping that Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Democrats "will continue to work with us in good faith to pass this short-term funding bill and maintain the critical functions of the federal government". That didn't happen on Thursday, but the clock is now reset for December 22 with no promises from conservative lawmakers.

A key House Republican leader acknowledges that some tax cuts in the sweeping tax legislation must expire to comply with Senate budget rules.

Pelosi also told reporters Thursday that lawmakers "will not leave here" without a deal to help immigrants who came to the US illegally as children and are enrolled in the Deferred Action Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which Trump ended three months ago.

Still, that will likely be a tough sell to Democrats in negotiations over the next two weeks.

Despite having to push back the timing of the bill, House Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters he was optimistic they'd have enough votes to get legislation through the House.

We'll see what happens. One Freedom Caucus member, Rep. Dave Brat, R-Va., said conservatives wanted leaders' assurances that they wouldn't agree to unacceptably higher spending.

The two Democrats said in a statement that nothing specific had been agreed at the meeting, which included a briefing from Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis about military issues. But lawmakers and President Donald Trump still have longer-range disputes to settle over spending, immigration and other issues before they can declare budget peace.

The White House is confident foresees a compromise with lawmakers that will include increases in defense and non-defense spending, White House legislative affairs director Marc Short told Reuters. That widely popular program provides medical care to more than 8 million children. It praised Pelosi and Schumer for choosing to "put their responsibility to the American people above partisanship" and said Trump was anticipating productive talks between "leaders who put their differences aside".

With the budget chafing under spending caps imposed by a 2011 bipartisan budget deal, Democrats want defense and domestic programs to get equal funding increases. There are also demands for money for battling opioid abuse.

Starbucks Selling New 'Christmas Tree' Drink For Only 5 Days
Serena Williams opens up about her experience with breastfeeding