House to take up first ‘minibus’ spending bill
The first group of spending bills for the 2019 fiscal year is expected to receive a vote on the House floor sometime this week as part of a consolidated piece of legislation.
The so-called minibus legislation will include three appropriations bills: Energy and Water, Legislative Branch, and Military Construction and Veterans Affairs.
These three bills are typically considered uncontroversial. Bills expected to yield more drama in the 2019 spending season include the Homeland Security bill, which would contain any funding provisions for President Trump’s proposed border wall, as well as the Labor, Health and Human Services bill, which frequently produces abortion-related fights.
Across the Capitol, the Senate Appropriations Committee has marked up the Energy and Water bill, and is scheduled to take up the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs bill this week, followed by the Legislative Branch bill next week.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has touted his preference for the “minibus” strategy for passing fiscal 2019 appropriations bills ahead of Sept. 30, when the current fiscal year ends.
Without new spending bills or a short-term continuing resolution to extend current funding, the government will shut down.
Trump has threatened to veto any continuing resolution if it does not contain funding for his proposed wall.
Republicans have expressed concern that such a shutdown just two months before the November midterm elections could cost the GOP votes as they seek to defend their majorities in the House and Senate.