Right-Wing House Republicans Derail Pentagon G.O.P. Bill, Rebuking McCarthy

Logo The New York TimesThe New York Times
2023-09-19 21:48:06  • 5 mins

The floor defeat underscored the G.O.P. resistance Speaker Kevin McCarthy was facing as he struggled to round up votes to avoid a government shutdown.

Deep Republican divisions erupted onto the House floor on Tuesday as a handful of far-right conservatives blocked a Pentagon spending bill from coming up for debate, dealing an embarrassing setback to Speaker Kevin McCarthy as he struggled to round up votes to prevent a government shutdown in less than two weeks.

In a development rarely seen in the House, five Republicans broke with their own party and refused to allow the usually broadly bipartisan military funding measure to be considered, registering their objections to Mr. McCarthys strategy in an escalating fight over federal spending. It left the chamber paralyzed for the moment, with little time before a Sept. 30 deadline to avert a government closure.

The stunning development sent Mr. McCarthy and his lieutenants scrambling for a way forward both on their yearlong spending bills and a temporary funding bill that had already run into a buzz saw of opposition from the far right as the speaker faced fresh threats of an ouster from detractors in his own party. Even if it could make it through the House, the temporary spending measure stood little chance in the Democratic-led Senate, where its combination of deep spending cuts and stringent border policies were seen as nonstarters.

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