Reid: 'Lots of problems' with funding bill

Reid: 'Lots of problems' with funding bill
© Greg Nash

Senate Democratic Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidWarner backing 'small carve-out' on filibuster for voting rights Senate hopefuls embrace nuking filibuster Biden fails to break GOP 'fever' MORE (Nev.) says there “are lots of problems” with a Republican proposal to fund the government beyond the end of the month, dampening hopes a deal might be reached this week.

Reid told reporters Wednesday that Republican and Democratic leaders are at loggerheads over the stopgap funding measure, which includes tens of millions of dollars to fight the Zika virus.

Republicans don’t want any of the $80 million slated for Puerto Rico's Zika response to go to Planned Parenthood clinics.

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“The CR is not done; it’s a work in progress,” Reid said, referring to the funding continuing resolution. “Zika funding is not done; it’s a work in progress.”

Asked whether the partisan dispute over granting Planned Parenthood access to federal funds remains a sticking point, Reid said, “Planned Parenthood is not gone.”

Senators had expected to vote Wednesday to begin floor debate on the stopgap, but now that’s unlikely. 

Senate Republican Whip John CornynJohn CornynDACA court ruling puts weight of immigration reform on Democrats Schumer feels pressure from all sides on spending strategy Data reveal big opportunity to finish the vaccine job MORE (Texas) said the Water Resources Development Act, which was supposed to pass Wednesday, now may not received a final vote until Thursday. He said the vote to begin debating the stopgap will happen after the water bill moves off the floor. 

Reid downplayed the likelihood of leaders reaching a deal by close of business Wednesday. 

“A lot of work [needs] to be done on that. This isn’t going to be wrapped up in the next couple hours, that’s for sure,” he said. “I think it would be extremely hard today. ... It can’t be done today.”

Reid met Thursday morning with Sen. Barbara MikulskiBarbara Ann MikulskiHarris invites every female senator to dinner next week Will the real Lee Hamiltons and Olympia Snowes please stand up? Bottom line MORE (Md.), the senior Democrat on the Appropriations Committee, as well as with members of his leadership team to discuss the path forward. 

He said he would provide an update to the ranking Democrats on other committees during a private lunch.