CR Talks Likely to Remain Free of Drama, Sequester Fix
President Obama on Friday said he would accept a continuing resolution to keep the government open beyond March 27 that does not offset the sequester, making it unlikely that either party will threaten a government shutdown over the measure.
The stopgap bill funding the last six months of fiscal 2013 would need to provide $1.043 trillion in federal spending, the cap set in the August 2011 agreement to raise the debt ceiling, Obama said.
“There’s no reason why we should have another crisis by shutting the government down in addition to those arbitrary spending cuts,” he said.
While the president’s comments provide reassurance that the federal government won’t be a pawn in negotiations over the new continuing resolution, they also signal the shrinking chances for lawmakers to rescind the $85 billion in across-the-board spending cuts going ahead.
The House plans to vote this week on a stopgap funding measure for the remainder of FY 2013 that will include individual spending bills for defense and military construction-veterans affairs. It will adhere to this year’s $1.043 trillion discretionary spending cap, and allow for about $70 billion to be trimmed from that figure as a result of the sequester.
The two individual spending bills will not provide additional funds for the military, but they will offer DOD some added flexibility to cope with the automatic cuts, according to CQ News.