McConnell backs 'clean' stopgap spending bill through Dec. 20

McConnell backs 'clean' stopgap spending bill through Dec. 20
© Greg Nash

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump impeachment trial to begin week of Feb. 8 Democrats float 14th Amendment to bar Trump from office Biden signals he's willing to delay Trump trial MORE (R-Ky.) on Monday threw his support behind a "clean" stopgap bill to fund the government through Dec. 20, saying it could pass the chamber and get President TrumpDonald TrumpMcCarthy says he told Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene he disagreed with her impeachment articles against Biden Biden, Trudeau agree to meet next month Trump planned to oust acting AG to overturn Georgia election results: report MORE's signature. 

"While the House and Senate continue negotiations on setting the allocations, we need to buy more time. The House and Senate need to pass a continuing resolution to fund the government through Dec. 20 and allow these talks to continue," McConnell said from the Senate floor. 


House appropriators introduced a continuing resolution (CR) that will fund the government through Dec. 20. Lawmakers have until the end of Thursday to prevent a government shutdown, and McConnell stressed that the chamber will remain in session to pass the bill before leaving for a weeklong Thanksgiving break. 

"This is what we need, a CR as clean as possible through Dec. 20. ... A clean CR to Dec. 20 would pass the Senate, and the White House has indicated President Trump would sign it," McConnell added. 

The government is currently funded through Nov. 21. But negotiations around the larger fiscal 2020 bills have been at a stalemate for months because of divisions on spending for Trump's border wall and top-line spending figures. 

Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinPence delivers coronavirus task force report to Biden Treasury imposes additional sanctions on Cuba over allegations of 'serious human rights abuse' Treasury Department sanctions inner circle of Russian agent Derkach for election interference MORE, House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDivide and conquer or unite and prosper Trump impeachment article being sent to Senate Monday Roe is not enough: Why Black women want an end to the Hyde Amendment MORE (D-Calif.), House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita LoweyNita Sue LoweyTrump seeks to freeze .4 billion of programs in final week of presidency This week: Trump's grip on Hill allies faces test Trump signs .3T relief, spending package MORE (D-N.Y.) and Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard ShelbyRichard Craig ShelbyMcConnell about to school Trump on political power for the last time Overnight Defense: Trump impeached for second time | National Guard at Capitol now armed, swelling to 20K troops for inauguration | Alabama chosen for Space Command home Space Command to be located in Alabama MORE (R-Ala.) met late last week to discuss the fiscal 2020 bills. 

Lowey and Shelby are hoping to get a deal on the top-line figures by Wednesday. 

McConnell added on Monday that he wants to wrap up as much of the fiscal 2020 bills as possible by the end of the year, a goal he has privately told Senate Republicans. 

Lawmakers are formally scheduled to be in session an additional two weeks after the Thanksgiving break, but they are likely to be in session at least through the third week of December given the Dec. 20 end date for the new stopgap bill.

"This is our opportunity to get a bipartisan process back on track ... and then with more cooperation, we can reach agreement on allocations and pass as many of the 12 appropriations bills as possible before the end of the year," he added.