WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork/CBSNews) — The House passed a short-term spending bill Thursday night that would fund the government through Feb. 16.
The vote was 230-197, with a handful of Republicans voting against the measure. It now faces another challenge in the Senate.
At a news conference, House Speaker Paul Ryan and other Republican members of congress warned of the consequences if the Senate did not approve the bill and the government shut down – saying troops could be jeopardized and children could also be put at risk.
As he arrived at the Pentagon earlier Thursday for a meeting, President Donald Trump said a shutdown “could happen.”
“We’ll see what happens, it’s up to the Democrats,” Trump said. “If the country shuts down, which could very well be, the budget should be handled a lot differently than it’s been handled over the last long period of time, many years.”
Democrats vowed to support the measure only if it included protections for immigrants covered under the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals.
House Speaker Paul Ryan said the military was being used as a bargaining chip.
“The defense budget is being held hostage for DACA, which is not a deadline that expires tomorrow,” he said. “DACA is down the road and we want to fix DACA, let me just be really clear, we think this needs to be addressed, we want to fix this. Good faith negotiations are underway right now, but we should not be holding hostage the military for this.”
The president said Democrats had another motivation.
“The Democrats want to see a shutdown to get off this subject, because this subject is not working for them,” Trump said. “The tax cuts and tax reform has not been working well for the Democrats.”
“The president is way off base here. So I don’t know if it’s his lack of experience in terms of governing, but you cannot possibly think you’re going to blame this on Democrats when your party controls everything in Congress and the White House,” said New Jersey Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez.
Small bipartisan groups in the House and Senate have already reached a deal. But according to a Reuters reports, the president responded to one of the plans saying, “it’s horrible for the security of our country.”
Now, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is starting over.
“I’m looking for something that President Trump supports,” he said. “As soon we figure out what he is for, then I would be convinced that we aren’t just spinning our wheels.”
South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsay Graham says he won’t support a Continuing Resolution because it doesn’t guarantee long-term funding for the military.
“I’m not going to vote for a C.R.,” he said. “The Democrats seem to be willing to increase military spending. Many Republicans seem to be willing to have a DACA fix and those who don’t want to combine the two are just, I think, very naive.”
Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia has already vowed to support a bill to keep the government open for another month.
“We should be able to work to keep this government up and operating the way we’re supposed to do and to punish 300 million plus people, it’s just ridiculous,” he said.
And with Arizona Sen. John McCain absent, if all Senate Republicans vote yes, Senate leadership will still need 10 more Democratic votes to pass the measure.
If Congress doesn’t pass a bill approving more money by midnight on Friday, most federal agencies will be forced to stop operations.