Charisma Caucus

Look Who's Happy With Congress' Spending Bill

Paul Ryan press conference
U.S. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) attempted to defend the omnibus spending bill worked out between Republicans and Democrats. The measure excludes provisions to defund Planned Parenthood and to repeal ObamaCare. (Reuters photo)

With the omnibus spending bill set for a vote Friday, it seems likely the majority of votes in favor for the legislation will come from the Democratic Party, not from Republicans who hold a majority in both chambers.

Wednesday, the House Freedom Caucus made a last-ditch effort to amend the proposal to include policy riders that had been included in initial GOP negotiations with Democrats. Those amendments were shot down by a coalition of Republicans loyal to House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Democrats.

The 40-member Freedom Caucus is now expected to vote against the bill.

"There's good stuff in there," Rep. Ted Yoho (R-Fla.) told The Hill on Wednesday evening, pointing to a GOP-favored provision lifting the 40-year ban on crude oil exports, "but I just can't get myself to do it."

Key aspects of the spending bill that are likely to rankle many Christian conservatives:

• It increases the budget deficit—leading to a larger national debt—by hundreds of billions of dollars.

Funding for Planned Parenthood continues; approximately $286 million in Title X family planning funds—most of which goes directly to the abortion provider—remains intact.

• It provides funding for some of President Obama's initiatives relative to the Paris climate deal.

• It makes it much more difficult to institute a full repeal of ObamaCare, a key Republican 2014 campaign promise.

U.S. Sen. Pete Sessions (R-Texas) blasted the deal. During a floor speech Wednesday, he said this is why American voters are "in open rebellion" with Washington.

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