#Cliffgate Update: Watch The House Rather Than The Senate
All eyes will be on the Senate today as it votes mid-afternoon on whether to proceed to a vote on the continuing resolution. Unless something unexpected happens and that vote fails, the Senate is widely expected to strip out the GOP-preferred provision that would prevent federal agencies from spending any money to implement Obamacare and then send a clean bill back to the House.
It's what happens in the House that will determine whether there's a government shutdown next Tuesday.
At this very late point in the debate, it's hard to discern even a hint of a strategy among House Republicans about what to do and how to get it done. The GOP plan that seemed to be emerging to vote this week on a debt ceiling extension that included tea party legislative priorities and punt on the CR was abandoned yesterday when the leadership realized it didn't have the votes from its own caucus to pass that bill.
That leaves the CR as the vehicle of choice for the tea party wing of the House GOP.
So the questions for this weekend all have to do with House Republicans. Will they:
- Be able to agree on anything?
- Be able to agree on anything before midnight on Monday?
- Be able to agree on anything that will have any chance of passing the House?
- Decide to pass a short-term (as in one week) CR to give themselves more time to do #1 and 2
- Decide to that a shutdown is worth the effort and again send the Senate something that it won't accept?