Senate expected to pass Speaker Johnson’s spending bill with support from Biden

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The Senate is expected to send a temporary spending package known as a Continuing Resolution (CR) to the White House, averting a government shutdown before the Nov. 17 deadline with partial extensions until Jan. 19 and Feb. 2.

The passage could come as quickly as Wednesday evening or Thursday, sources familiar told Fox News Digital. The Biden administration told Fox News Digital in an email that if the Senate approves the CR, Biden “will sign this continuing resolution that maintains current funding levels and has no harmful policy riders.”

“Looking ahead, House Republicans must stop wasting time on extreme, partisan appropriations bills that break the bipartisan agreement two-thirds of them voted for and instead work quickly with Democrats on full-year appropriations bills,” a Biden spokesperson said. “Congress must also address urgent national security and domestic needs – including funding for Israel, Ukraine, humanitarian assistance, border security, WIC, and other critical priorities that have bipartisan support.”

A Senate aide told Fox News Digital on Wednesday there are currently discussions to speed up the procedure to get the CR to a full vote by Thursday night.


Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer speaks during a news conference at the U.S. Capitol on June 1, 2023. (Ting Shen/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

In a press conference Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said both he and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., “want to avoid a shutdown – so getting this done, obviously, before Friday midnight.”

“You know, the Senate has lots of arcane rules, but McConnell and I are going to work together – we talked about this yesterday – to get it done as quickly as possible,” he said.

But the process may not be as straightforward as leaders hope if Republicans introduce amendments. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., has voiced his opposition to the CR, which GOP hardliners argue does not include enough spending cuts.

“I will oppose the CR and instead offer a CR with reduced spending levels,” Paul posted to X, formerly known as Twitter, on Tuesday night. 

A second Senate aide, however, told Fox News Digital “the amendment would obviously be expected to fail,” and the CR will likely still be passed with bipartisan support. 

Aside from Paul, sources told Fox News Digital that other GOP members may not want to introduce amendments that will drag out the approval past the deadline just a week before Thanksgiving. 


Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell walks to the Senate Chambers in the U.S. Capitol on Sept. 27, 2022. (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

But the aide predicted it may be a different scenario when the January and February staggered deadlines for funding roll around, triggering more debate between lawmakers in the upper chamber on spending for government programs. 

The House of Representatives passed the CR to avert a pre-holiday season government shutdown on Tuesday night along strong bipartisan lines.

It passed 336 to 95, well over the two-thirds margin it needed to get the measure over the line. Just two Democrats voted against the bill, along with 93 Republicans. 

The bill’s passage was the first big legislative test for Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., who took on the role less than a month ago shortly after former Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., was ousted.

Despite more Democrats voting for it than Republicans, Johnson did net a win in getting a majority of his GOP Conference to support the CR.


Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky.

Sen. Rand Paul may oppose Senate CR. (Greg Nash/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)


Fiscal year 2023 government funding was previously extended until Friday to give Congress more time to pass 12 individual appropriations bills, setting up the next year’s spending priorities. But faced with another looming deadline, House and Senate leaders agreed another short-term extension was needed.

“Every Democrat is going to vote for it,” another source familiar said. “And McConnell said he supports it, too, so that’s every Democrat plus one and there will certainly be more than one that follows, so they have the votes to just pass it as is.”

Fox News’ Elizabeth Elkind contributed to this report. 

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