Mark Meadows

How House Republicans Got to ‘Yes’ on Funding the Government
Leaders navigated twists and turns in negotiations with the Freedom Caucus

Speaker Paul D. Ryan leaves his office in the Capitol on Thursday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

All eyes will be on the Senate on Friday as lawmakers there race against the clock to avert a government shutdown. But over in the House, Republicans are happy they were able to pass a four-week stopgap measure without turning to the Democrats for help.

It wasn’t an easy task for House GOP leaders to cobble up the 216 votes within their conference needed to pass a continuing resolution. (The bill ended up passing Thursday, 230-197.) Yet throughout the negotiations, leadership remained confident its members would get there, given the urgency of the deadline and the political consequences if they failed to meet it.

House Passes CR, but Threat of Shutdown Still Looms
Freedom Caucus got on board, but bill could die in Senate

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., stops to speak with reporters about the continuing resolution as he walks through the Capitol Visitor Center on Thursday, Jan. 18, 2018(Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

A government shutdown still looms even as the House passed a four-week stopgap funding bill Thursday evening, sending the measure to the Senate, where prospects for its passage remain grim.

House Republicans put up the needed votes to pass the continuing resolution before a handful of Democrats added their “yes” votes, for a final tally of 230-197.

Freedom Caucus Gets on Board CR
Promises to bust budget caps for defense programs sealed deal

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., stops to speak with reporters about the continuing resolution on Thursday. He wants a different stopgap funding measure from GOP leadership that his group can support. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

After a day of public disagreements regarding a stopgap funding bill, House GOP leaders, the conservative Freedom Caucus and President Donald Trump have reached a breakthrough.

“The majority of the Freedom Caucus has taken a vote to support the CR effort this evening,” the group tweeted Thursday.

The Battle of North Carolina: McHenry vs. Meadows
House GOP dynamics between Tar Heel duo on display heading into funding vote

Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows is engaged in a battle of vote counts with his fellow North Carolinian, Chief Deputy Whip Patrick T. McHenry. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Two North Carolina Republicans from bordering districts, both representing the Asheville area, are engaged in a battle of confidence heading into a critical government funding vote Thursday.

House Chief Deputy Whip Patrick T. McHenry confidently asserted Thursday afternoon as he headed to vote on a rule setting up debate on a four-week continuing resolution, which passed, that the stopgap would pass the House later that evening with GOP votes and without any changes.

The Blame Game Over the Shutdown Showdown
Congressional leaders start pointing fingers

Speaker Paul D. Ryan is hunting for votes to keep the government open. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

With less than 36 hours to avoid a shutdown of nonessential government services and no solution in sight, congressional leaders spent Thursday  offering their spin on who will be to blame if a deal cannot be struck.

Notably missing amid the rhetoric — as Republicans pointed to Democrats, while the minority said the majority is at fault — were predictions leaders had made in recent weeks that there would be no government shutdown.

Shutdown ‘Could Very Well Be,’ Trump Says
Pelosi comment suggests shutdown imminent

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during news conference. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

President Trump entered the Pentagon on Thursday and said a government shutdown “could very well be.”

The comment came about an hour before the White House said the president supports a House GOP-crafted stopgap to avert the shutdown, which followed an earlier tweet that appeared to undermine the bill.

Freedom Caucus Throws Water on Leadership Stopgap Confidence
Meadows says more than 22 GOP ‘no’ votes remain

Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows stops to speak with reporters Thursday about the continuing resolution negotiations. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows told reporters Thursday there are still more than 22 Republican ‘no’ votes on the stopgap funding measure and that the House GOP can’t pass it on its own without additional changes.

“We’ve offered a number of different options, so it would take the leadership putting forth a different proposal than they currently have,” Meadows said on how GOP holdouts can get to “yes” on the continuing resolution. The North Carolina Republican declined to say how many of the “no” votes were from the Freedom Caucus versus the conference at large.

Paul Ryan Caught Between Freedom Caucus, Democrats
Lacking votes on resolving shutdown, speaker will need to negotiate with one or the other

Speaker Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., left, and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., have just a couple of days left to round up support to avoid a government shutdown. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Likely short of the votes he needs to pass a stopgap government funding bill through his chamber by Friday, Speaker Paul D. Ryan spent Wednesday morning railing against Democrats — whose votes he may need to court.

A four-week continuing resolution that GOP leaders unveiled Tuesday night faces opposition from members of the House Freedom Caucus who want immediate action to increase defense spending and from Democrats who want a resolution this week on the status of some 690,000 young immigrants, known as Dreamers, who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children.

Freedom Caucus Members Withholding Votes GOP Needs to Pass CR
“The votes are not currently there to pass it with just Republicans,” Meadows says

Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows says the votes are not currently there to pass a CR with just Republicans. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 11:09 p.m. | While a majority of House Republicans appear ready to support a short-term continuing resolution to keep the government open through Feb. 16, enough Freedom Caucus members remain uncommitted to make passage questionable.

“The votes are not currently there to pass it with just Republicans,” Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows said before a crucial House GOP conference meeting on the topic Tuesday night.

Spending, Immigration Talks Entangled
Ahead of Jan. 19 deadline, little progress has been made on either

South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer confer after the Senate policy lunches in the Capitol on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Despite Republican leaders’ best efforts to decouple spending and immigration negotiations, the two issues have become intertwined. And with five legislative days before the Jan. 19 government funding deadline, little progress has been made.

Lawmakers have acknowledged that a fourth stopgap spending measure is needed to keep the government open while broader talks about fiscal 2018 spending and a legislative replacement for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, continue. House Republicans will huddle Thursday morning to discuss both issues.