Let us be clear: Republicans do not want to use continuing resolutions to fund the government. That’s why the House has made it a priority for spending bills to go through regular order. But the thing about regular order is, the Senate has to do its job. For the Senate to be able to do its job, it means that Senate Democrats cannot filibuster the spending bills that the House sends its way.
Let’s take a quick jog down memory lane. Here’s a list of major spending bills that the House has passed that are currently sitting in the Senate—all because Senate Democrats threaten to filibuster them, making passage impossible:
- July 27: The House passed a defense package, or the ‘Security Minibus,’ to address key national security priorities, including rebuilding our military and taking care of our veterans.
- September 14: The House passed all 12 appropriations bills on time as part of the Make America Secure and Prosperous Appropriations Act. That day, Speaker Ryan said, “we need the Senate to work with us to get these bills on the president’s desk.”
- December 21: The House passed an additional disaster relief funding measure.
- January 18: The House passed a continuing resolution to fund the government, which Senate Democrats initially blocked, and then agreed to pass yesterday.
That’s why it was odd that yesterday, right after Senate Democrats ended their needless, reckless crusade to shut down the government, Democratic leaders lambasted the use of continuing resolutions on the House floor.
“Let us try to use every one of those days to reach agreement on funding the government so we don’t have another CR, which all of us believe is bad fiscal policy and substantive policy,” House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer said. “And in this resolution, we will extend the harmful effects of another CR to both defense and nondefense agencies for another 17 days. That means that Congress will be more than four whole months into the fiscal year without a budget agreement. This is dangerous, Mr. Speaker, both to our military and to our civilian agencies, each of which require budget certainty.”
Democratic Leader Pelosi quoted the wise words of Defense Secretary Mattis for why continuing resolutions are not ideal.
“In August, Defense Secretary Mattis was asked what would be the effect of another stopgap short-term spending bill on the military. You all know he replied, ‘It just creates unpredictability.’ He said, ‘It makes us rigid. We cannot deal with new and revealing threats. We know our enemies are not standing still, so it’s as unwise as it can be.’ I’ll submit other statements to the record from the Navy Secretary [Richard Spencer], et cetera.”
We totally agree with the Democratic leaders. That’s why we urge Whip Hoyer and Leader Pelosi submit these statements to their counterparts in the Senate, who have been blocking these funding bills—making it so that continuing resolutions are the only way Congress can fund the government and provide resources to our men and women in uniform.