Speaker McCarthy is running out of options to prevent a shutdown, as conservatives are hesitant about the proposed new plan.

WASHINGTON — Speaker Kevin McCarthy is running out of options as he races Monday to come up with a plan to keep the federal government from shutting down as even a plan to include hardline border security provisions wasn’t enough to appease the far-right flank in his Republican House majority.

The speaker advised his Republican conference to be ready to remain until the weekend in order to approve a temporary solution, known as a continuing resolution, which would prevent government offices from closing after the Sept. 30 deadline. However, numerous individuals are already anticipating the significant political consequences that may arise from a federal shutdown.

On Monday, McCarthy indicated that he still has enough time.

“He informed reporters at the Capitol that this is not the 30th, and there is still a long distance ahead of us.”

McCarthy criticized the notion of reaching a compromise with Democrats while attempting to pass the yearly spending measures independently. He stated that Republicans were still generating numerous beneficial ideas.

According to sources familiar with the call, McCarthy stated that House Republicans proposed a vote on Thursday to pass a funding bill for one month. This bill was negotiated between the House Freedom Caucus, a group of conservative hardliners, and the Main Street Caucus, a group of pragmatic conservatives.

The objective of the package was to gain approval from the conservative faction of the Republican Conference. It included a reduction of 1% to the spending levels of the previous year, along with several Republican suggestions for border security and immigration.

Given that the Democrats control the Senate and are unlikely to approve any conservative options, McCarthy’s best chance now is to propose a measure that initiates discussion with the other legislative body. However, even this approach is uncertain as time is running out to reach an agreement.

McCarthy intended to schedule a vote on a bill regarding Department of Defense expenditures on Wednesday, followed by the temporary funding measure the following day.

“I am currently receiving opposition from a significant number of individuals,” stated Rep. Kevin Hern, a Republican from Oklahoma and the head of the Republican Study Committee, which is the largest conservative group in the House. He mentioned that he is still evaluating the proposal and emphasized that extensive efforts are underway “behind the scenes” to secure the necessary votes for its approval.

The leaders of the House Republican majority, known as the “five families,” are anticipated to meet privately in the speaker’s office later on Monday.

Finding a mutually agreed-upon course of action for McCarthy is of utmost importance, considering he has only eight working days left before funding expires.

“This framework secures the border and it keeps the government open. Republicans need to focus on those things,” said Rep. Dusty Johnson, R-S.D., who is chair of the Mainstreet Caucus and helped craft the proposal.

Congress is running out of time to take action. McCarthy believes he still has time to strategize before the government’s fiscal year ends, but he has also cautioned his party that a government shutdown is likely to have negative consequences for Republicans in terms of politics.

“I have experienced shutdowns before, and I have never witnessed anyone emerge victorious from a shutdown. This is because when you initiate a shutdown, you essentially surrender all your authority to the administration,” McCarthy stated during a Sunday interview with Fox News.

“If the border agents are not paid, how will you successfully argue for securing the border? How will you effectively advocate for removing wokeism from the Department of Defense if our own troops are not receiving their salaries? Your influence in these matters will be diminished.”

However, McCarthy is already encountering opposition. Several Republicans utilized X, the platform previously referred to as Twitter, shortly after the Sunday conversation to express their dissatisfaction with the package, claiming that the spending cuts and border measures were inadequate.

Many are readying for a government closure next month. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce issued a memo Monday to the business community saying there is a “substantial consensus” that there will be a long shutdown and warning that there is “no clear path for reopening the government.”

The Chamber stated that both individuals and businesses depend on the discretionary actions of the government in their daily lives. They emphasized that various aspects such as passports, permits, clinical trials, and contractors are essential for a properly functioning economy.

The Biden administration is also highlighting the potential damage from a funding stoppage. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on CNBC Monday, “We’ve got a good, strong economy and creating a situation that could cause a loss of momentum is something we don’t need.”

If McCarthy is willing to remove the conservative policy wins from a funding bill, he might consider seeking support from House Democrats to pass a temporary solution. However, there are some right-wing members who are threatening to remove him from the speakership if he takes this action.

Currently, the speaker displayed no indication of reaching a compromise with Democrats in order to avoid a shutdown. On Monday, he informed reporters that Republicans were continuing to propose numerous beneficial concepts.


Reporting was contributed by Fatima Hussein, a writer for the Associated Press, based in Washington.

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