House stays in DC despite threats from GOP leaders
© Greg Nash

House members have been advised to stay close to the Capitol on Friday as the midnight deadline to avoid a shutdown ticks closer, despite initial claims by GOP leaders that the chamber would adjourn in the afternoon in defiance of the Senate impasse.

GOP leaders said earlier Friday that House lawmakers would leave as a way to build pressure on the Senate to clear the House-passed spending bill and avoid a government shutdown at midnight.

But House Minority Whip Steny HoyerSteny Hamilton HoyerDemocrats opposed to Pelosi lack challenger to topple her Dems' confidence swells with midterms fast approaching Trump's Puerto Rico tweets spark backlash MORE (D-Md.) demanded a vote on a motion to adjourn, which nearly all members of both parties voted against. Rep. Thomas MassieThomas Harold MassieRand Paul’s Russia visit displays advancement of peace through diplomacy Republicans win elections by restoring faith of Americans Pelosi blasts Trump administration: Allowing 3D printed guns is a ‘death warrant’ MORE (R-Ky.) was the sole vote in favor, while Rep. Dwight EvansDwight (Dewey) Michael EvansDem leaders fend off calls to impeach Trump House passes bill to help small businesses guard against hackers House stays in DC despite threats from GOP leaders MORE (D-Pa.) voted "present."


“I believe we ought to stay here and do our work,” Hoyer said on the House floor.

The House is supposed to be on recess next week, and lawmakers are hoping to avoid needing to reschedule congressional delegations abroad as well as events back in their districts.

Guidance from the House majority whip’s office initially maintained that a series of votes late Friday morning would be the only legislative business of the day.

But after lawmakers voted against adjourning, members were then advised to “remain flexible, as additional procedural votes are possible.”

The House passed legislation on Thursday night, mostly on party lines, to keep the government open through Feb. 16 and extend funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for six years.

But the bill does not appear to have the votes to pass in the Senate.

Democrats are demanding protections for young immigrants known as “Dreamers” in order to support what would be the fourth stopgap spending measure since September.

At least three Senate Republicans — Sens. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGOP opens door to holding Kavanaugh committee vote this week Press: Judge Kavanaugh must withdraw Kavanaugh: 'I will not be intimidated into withdrawing' MORE (S.C.), Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulA Senator Gary Johnson could be good not just for Libertarians, but for the Senate too Conservatives left frustrated as Congress passes big spending bills Senate approves 4B spending bill MORE (Ky.) and Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeGOP opens door to holding Kavanaugh committee vote this week Police arrest 128 protesting Kavanaugh on Capitol Hill GOP launches counteroffensive on Kavanaugh MORE (Ariz.) — have also said they are opposed to the stopgap legislation.

House members are staying close to the Capitol as they wait to see what unfolds in the Senate.