House Democrats introduced legislation on Sept. 21 that would keep the federal government funded until Dec. 11, although it isn't clear if the White House or congressional Republicans will take it up, raising the prospect of a federal shutdown by the end of this month.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin were attempting to reach a compromise on the farm bailout money before the talks broke down on Sept. 18, according to reports. Much of Congress's attention is focused on the looming fight over filling a Supreme Court vacancy created by the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Sept. 18.
The short-term spending bill introduced by the Democratic-controlled House also doesn't include any new COVID-19 provisions. Negotiations around the next stimulus package stalled more than a month ago, despite pressure from President Donald Trump on Republicans and a bill that was introduced by moderate Democrats and Republicans to revive the talks.
Pelosi and Mnuchin, in public statements, agreed earlier this month to keep talks on the virus package separate from the continuing resolution to fund the government.
Pelosi also dismissed the idea of using government funding as leverage in the Supreme Court fight.
"None of us has any interest in shutting down government. That has such a harmful and painful impact on so many people in our country. So I would hope that we can just proceed with that. There is some enthusiasm among some exuberance on the left to say let's use that, but we're not going to be shutting down government," Pelosi told "This Week" on Sept. 20.
But in the same interview, Pelosi said that all options are on the table to block Trump's Supreme Court pick from being confirmed before the November elections.
Asked if Democrats won’t “rule anything out,” Pelosi said that lawmakers have responsibilities. She was also asked about whether she would support another impeachment.
“We have a responsibility, we take an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. We have a responsibility to meet the needs of the American people. When we weigh the equities of protecting our democracy, requires us to use every arrow in our quiver,” Pelosi responded, without elaborating.