House working on deal to speed up amendment process

House Republicans and Democrats were said to be working on an agreement that could allow the House to speed up its consideration of amendments to the FY 2011 spending bill, and finish its work this week. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said work on the bill might extend past the original Thursday 3 p.m. deadline, but no further specifics on timing were offered by late Wednesday.

In the meantime, debate on the GOP spending bill for FY 2011 continued late into Wednesday night and appeared likely to head into early Thursday morning, although the House stopped taking roll call votes on amendments by around 7 p.m.

With no roll call votes until Thursday, debate was dominated mostly by Democrats who took to the floor to oppose parts of the bill that would limit funding for women's health services, community block grants, heating assistance and other programs.

The somewhat meandering nature of the debate was made clear at around 10 p.m., when Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) asked if there was any specific amendment being considered at that moment. The chair replied, "No."