House to consider Ryan budget in April

House to consider Ryan budget in April
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House Republicans in April will consider a budget authored by Rep. Paul RyanPaul RyanGOP grapples with how to handle town halls Leaked ObamaCare bill would defund Planned Parenthood House markup of ObamaCare repeal bill up in the air MORE (R-Wis.) that sticks to a bipartisan spending level for 2015 but balances within a decade, Majority Leader Eric CantorEric CantorGOP shifting on immigration Breitbart’s influence grows inside White House Ryan reelected Speaker in near-unanimous GOP vote MORE (R-Va.) told lawmakers on Friday.

Cantor’s announcement sets up what could be the most difficult budget vote since 2011 for the Republican majority, since it would require dozens of conservatives to endorse a $1.014 trillion spending level that they opposed in December. Ryan, the Budget Committee chairman, will propose deeper cuts in future years to keep the party’s commitment to erasing the federal deficit within 10 years.

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"We owe it to the American people to demonstrate how we will allocate their tax dollars and balance the budget,” Cantor wrote in a Friday memo to the House GOP outlining the agenda for the next three weeks after Congress returns from a recess.

“While the president’s budget blows past the spending limit previously agreed to, the House Republican budget, under the leadership of Chairman Paul Ryan, will adhere to the agreed upon spending limits and balance in ten years, as we did last year.”

While Cantor commits to the top-line number he doesn't specify whether Ryan's budget will seek to raise the defense cap by lowering domestic spending. Ryan this week blasted defense cuts in the wake of the Ukraine crisis at a meeting in Wisconsin.  Raising defense spending would technically violate the December budget deal.

Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) had previously said the party hoped to adopt a budget resolution but held back from a firm commitment. Senate Democrats are skipping a budget this year, after Congress passed a two-year agreement in December negotiated by Ryan and Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), which set a top-line level for fiscal 2015. Sixty-two Republicans voted against that agreement, but party leaders will need many of their votes for the Ryan budget because Democrats are likely to unanimously oppose it.

Cantor said the House would also consider three bills to reform the budgeting process, including a proposal from Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.) that would require the Congressional Budget Office to consider broader economic impacts, known as “dynamic scoring,” when making its projections for major legislation.

In addition to the budget bills, the House GOP will take aim at the 30-hour workweek provision in ObamaCare, along with a bill to reduce regulations on coal mining. And Cantor said the House plans further action to sanction Russia and bolster Ukraine after approving $1 billion in loan guarantees for Ukraine earlier this month.

Erik Wasson contributed.