In a surprising turn of events, the House of Representatives voted 335 to 91 on Friday to pass a 45-day stopgap spending measure, effectively averting a government shutdown beyond midnight.
The legislation garnered significant bipartisan backing, as most Democrats joined ranks with most Republicans to secure its passage. The move, which could cost House Speaker Kevin McCarthy his speakership because far right extremists in the Republican Party have threatened to remove him if he engineered a bipartisan bill to keep the government open, comes despite the notable absence of support for Ukraine, an issue that Democrats had previously emphasized as a top priority.
The bill now advances to the Senate for further consideration. Democratic Coalition Chair Annie Kuster underscored that while her group backs the continuing resolution, it is imperative to continue the push for aid to Ukraine.
“Speaker McCarthy and extreme House Republicans have refrained from engaging in genuine collaboration with Democrats to fully finance the government, despite our persistent entreaties to forge a bipartisan path forward,” Kuster stated in a press release. “While we endorse this measure to address the immediate crisis, we remain steadfast in our call for additional funding to bolster Ukraine in their struggle for democracy. We will tirelessly work to ensure they receive the necessary support to prevail in this conflict.”
Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries earlier urged members of his party to support the 45-day continuing resolution that House Republicans had introduced. The deadline for government funding looms, with Saturday marking the cutoff date.
The unexpected unity displayed in the House vote provides a reprieve, though the ongoing debate over funding priorities, particularly regarding Ukraine, remains a prominent feature of the political landscape. The resolution’s journey through the Senate will likely bring further scrutiny and deliberation.