By Erik Wasson - 07/30/12 02:50 PM EDT
House Republicans have no plans to move forward this week on a catch-all spending bill to avert the government shutdown, sources confirmed Monday.
Congress will instead leave town for a five-week recess without voting on a continuing resolution or even introducing it, these sources said.
“No CR this week,” one GOP aide said, adding that there is “zero chance” of text appearing this week.
Without a resolution to keep the government operating, the government would shut down after Sept. 30. Both sides have reason to avoid that, but they won't get to a vote until closer to the deadline day.
After the five-week recess, the House will have only eight legislative days in September in which to complete its work before the election.
Momentum began to build last week for a six-month continuing resolution at current spending levels. The bill would likely adhere roughly to the $1.043 trillion projected spending rate for 2012 — $4 billion less than the Budget Control Act top-line number for 2013, but $15 billion more than the level set in the House-passed budget resolution.
The House Appropriations Committee has been crafting its 12 annual bills based on the House budget number, while the Senate has been using the BCA figure. The CR would push a final resolution on the spending level differences and on dozens of policy riders to the spring of 2013.
Conservatives had been pushing for a longer-term CR in order to delay final spending decisions on the 12 separate annual appropriations bills until next year. They are betting on a GOP controlled Senate and White House being able to make quick cuts to discretionary spending.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) also spoke favorably of a bill that lasts beyond the December lame-duck session. Analysts see Reid’s move as a calculation that the CR is best left out of a fight over expiring tax rates and automatic sequester cuts, a fight where Democrats think they have an advantage.