House Passes Continuing Resolution to Prevent Government Shutdown

November 19, 2019 Updated: November 19, 2019

A Continuing Resolution (CR) was passed by the House on Nov. 19 to give Congress more time to fully fund the federal government for 2020. Democrats and Republicans agreed that this is a short term measure to avert a government shut down and give lawmakers more time for negotiations.

The Senate is expected to follow before the expiration of the existing stopgap law on Thursday.

Chairwoman of the House Appropriations Committee, Nita M. Lowey (D-N.Y.), introduced the CR that will fully fund the government through Dec. 20. On Monday afternoon, Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) wrote, “This is a welcome development and will allow us to continue our bipartisan and bicameral negotiations on the Fiscal Year 2020 appropriations process.”

“With a government shutdown deadline just days away, this continuing resolution is necessary to keep the government open as we work towards completing the appropriations process,” said Chairwoman Lowey. “I am particularly proud that we are assuring full funding for a fair and accurate Census and ensuring our service members receive a 3.1 percent pay raise. I look forward to passing this legislation and getting it signed into law.”

Representative Mark Green (R-Tenn.) wrote on Twitter. “While @SpeakerPelosi and @RepAdamSchiff hold #impeachment hearings, the U.S. military runs out of funding on Thursday. The plan? Kick the can down the road by authorizing another continuing resolution.”

The Republican Congressman echoed a criticism for the CR because it does not fully fund the military. The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) funding has been on hold, as the specifics of NDAA have not been agreed on by the two parties.

“This is no way to govern. CR’s are wasteful. They harm America’s military. They damage our Nation’s security. They put our men and women in uniform at risk. Instead of wasting everyone’s time on impeachment, let’s give our troops the stable funding they deserve.”

“Importantly, this continuing resolution provides the Commerce Department with the necessary funds to carry out the decennial census; provides funds for mobile centers to ensure the census reaches those in the hardest to reach areas; and fulfills our Constitutional obligation to make sure that every American is counted, “ said Leahy. “I strongly urge the Senate to take up and pass this bill as soon as possible.”

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Monday said he supports a plain CR to prevent a government shutdown and give the government more time to get the full appropriations passed, “We need to get results on appropriations before the end of the year,” said McConnell.

“While the House and Senate continue negotiations on setting the allocations, we need to buy more time. The House and Senate need to pass a continuing resolution to fund the government through Dec. the 20 and allow these talks to continue,” McConnell said

“Let me say that again; the administration indicates that the president is willing and ready to sign a plan CR through Dec. 20, so that we can finish our work.”

Congress has until the end of Thursday to prevent a government shutdown, and McConnell was clear that the chamber will remain in session to pass the CR before leaving for a weeklong Thanksgiving break.

“This is our opportunity to get a bipartisan process back on track … and then with more cooperation, we can reach agreement on allocations and pass as many of the 12 appropriations bills as possible before the end of the year,” he added.

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