Senators Mike Lee (Utah), Rick Scott (Florida), and Ted Cruz (Texas) of the Republican who was leading a group of conservative senators opposed the move, while Senator Leahy objected to a request for unanimous agreement to move the GOP legislation.
Instead of a year-end omnibus bill that would raise the levels of discretionary expenditure for both military and non-military purposes, the Republicans have pushed for Congress to enact a stop-gap spending measure extending until 2023. On that omnibus bill, discussions between Democrats and Republicans are still ongoing.
Sen. Lee asserts that it has become normal to postpone significant financial decisions to the next Congress when one party loses control of the House. According to Sen. Lee, There have only been five instances in which a different party has taken control of the House of Representatives. And in precisely zero of those cases, Congress approved the bill after the election to pass enormous comprehensive spending legislation during a lame-duck session.
Sen. Leahy disagreed, saying that the plan would leave $76 billion for national security “on the Republican cutting room floor” and result in a $7.5 billion funding shortfall for medical treatment for veterans.
Sen. Scott, who spoke on the floor after Leahy objected, backed Lee’s idea. ” Sen. Lee’s simple continuing resolution should be accepted rather than a convoluted omnibus budget measure. This enables a new Congress to draft a legitimate, balanced budget, which is what we ought to be doing in any case,” he continued.
Sen. Scott and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Kentucky), who favors passing a year-end omnibus, have clashed over the GOP’s approach to a funding bill. Last month, he ran against McConnell for the position of Senate GOP leader and received 10 of the 48 votes.