House passes disaster relief bill to fund government through Feb. 8

House passes disaster relief bill to fund government through Feb. 8
© Greg Nash

The House passed a Democratic-backed emergency disaster relief bill on Wednesday that includes an amendment funding the federal government through early February.

The bill passed in a 237-187 vote, with six Republicans joining Democrats in voting for the measure, which would reopen parts of the government and fund them through Feb. 8.

The legislation introduced by House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita LoweyNita Sue LoweyWhite House prepared to support December CR On The Money: Trump seeks to shift spotlight from impeachment to economy | Appropriators agree to Dec. 20 funding deadline | New study says tariffs threaten 1.5M jobs Appropriators agree to Dec. 20 funding deadline MORE (D-N.Y.) would provide $12.1 billion in disaster relief funding for areas impacted by Hurricane Florence, Hurricane Michael and the California wildfires, as well as other areas impacted by natural disasters last year.

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The measure is not expected to be taken up in the Senate, where Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP senators balk at lengthy impeachment trial Graham: Senate trial 'must expose the whistleblower' Graham says Schiff should be a witness in Trump impeachment trial MORE (R-Ky.) has vowed to not bring any spending measure to reopen the government to the floor unless President TrumpDonald John TrumpGOP senators balk at lengthy impeachment trial Warren goes local in race to build 2020 movement 2020 Democrats make play for veterans' votes MORE has signaled he will sign it.

Its passage comes on the 26th day of the partial government shutdown with no clear path forward as negotiations over funding for Trump’s border wall remain at an impasse.

The president has said he will not support any spending bill that doesn’t include funding for a barrier along the U.S.-Mexico border. Top Democrats said they will not back any measure that provides anything close to the administration's request for $5.7 billion in border security funding.

House Democrats have implemented a strategy of bringing clean funding bills to the floor in an attempt to pressure GOP lawmakers to break with the president’s demand for a wall.

Republicans are also optimistic they can sway Democrats to buck their party’s leadership and support wall funding as the shutdown, which began Dec. 22, continues to drag on.

Members of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus met the president and administration officials in the Situation Room on Wednesday, but the negotiations failed to produce a deal.

The House is expected to take up another clean continuing resolution aimed at funding the government through Feb. 28 on Thursday.