Boehner: House will address government funding measure in September

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House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Thursday he expects the House will consider a stopgap funding measure to avoid a government shutdown when it returns from recess in September.

House leaders had discussed voting on a short-term spending bill, also known as a continuing resolution (CR), as soon as next week.

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Boehner said he expected the funding bill would keep the government operating into the lame-duck session after the midterm elections.

“I imagine it would go into early December,” Boehner said at his weekly press conference in the Capitol.

The government would shut down on Oct. 1 without a new funding bill.

House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) said Wednesday that the limited time frame in September was the main motivator for moving a CR sooner rather than later.

Congress is set to return from its five-week August recess on Sept. 8. The House is then scheduled to take another weeklong recess after being back for eight legislative days and will return just two days before the new fiscal year starts on Oct. 1. 

The limited number of days in session would require relatively quick approval of a spending bill to avoid a government shutdown a month before the midterm elections.

Moreover, an expiration date of early December would require more negotiating with a Democratic Senate instead of a potential new Republican Senate in 2015.

The government shut down for 16 days last October in a fight over defunding ObamaCare.

Momentum for picking that fight grew over the long August recess in 2013.