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McConnell: Senate expects to pass short-term funding bill before shutdown deadline

  • Congress is scrambling to reach a deal to avert a government shutdown as new possible points of contention emerge.
  • House Democratic Whip Rep. Steny Hoyers said he would oppose a temporary funding measure if Republicans bring their amended Obamacare replacement plan to the floor by Saturday.
  • President Trump could potentially disrupt a bipartisan consensus on sending Medicaid dollars to Puerto Rico as a condition of keeping the government open.

The Senate expects to pass a short-term funding bill ahead of the late Friday deadline to keep the government open, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday.

Earlier on the Senate floor, he said he expected the chamber would pass the one-week funding bill introduced in the House on Wednesday. He added that lawmakers will pass the extension so they can see a final draft of a funding measure before they consider it next week.

On Thursday, House Speaker Paul Ryan said that "under any circumstances" keeping the government open will require a short-term extension. He accused Democrats of "dragging their feet" on reaching a deal.

Congress is scrambling to reach a deal to avert a government shutdown as new possible points of contention emerge. House Democratic Whip Rep. Steny Hoyer on Thursday said he would oppose a temporary funding measure — and encourage his caucus to do so — if House Republicans bring their amended Obamacare replacement plan to the floor by Saturday.

"If Republicans pursue this partisan path of forcing Americans to pay more for less and destabilizing our [country's] health care system — without even knowing how much their bill will cost — Republicans should be prepared to pass a one-week Continuing Resolution on their own," he said in a statement.

However, Ryan later signaled that he would not seek a vote this week.

President Donald Trump had also threatened to hold up negotiations on keeping the government open this week. On Wednesday, the White House dropped its opposition to an Affordable Care Act subsidy for low-income people.

The Trump administration previously stopped insisting on funding for a wall on the southern border as part of a bill to keep the government funded.

Still, Trump could potentially disrupt a bipartisan consensus on sending Medicaid dollars to Puerto Rico as a condition of keeping the government open, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Trump has accused Democrats of seeking a shutdown, something Hoyer disputed in a CNBC interview Thursday.