According to an article appearing in Politico by Burgess Everett and John Bresnahan, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said in an interview last Friday that “he will back a plan to fund the government into December with no conditions,” breaking with congressional conservatives in their calls to defund Planned Parenthood as part of a larger budget bill. Recognizing that a maneuver to defund the organization would be blocked by Senate Democrats and vetoed by the president, McConnell called on congressional conservatives to bend to political realities and avoid a strategy that could lead to a government shutdown.
“It’s an exercise in futility,” said McConnell in the article. “It’s better to be honest with the American people and say, ‘That won’t get it done.’”
The proposed ‘clean bill’ would serve as a stopgap measure and buy time to negotiate a long-term government funding bill later in the year, thereby avoiding the latest threat of shutdown in the process. This temporary fix would also give Congress time to address pending tax extenders legislation and other broader policy issues coming out of the August recess.
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