McCarthy insists 'good progress' made in shutdown talks

Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) insisted Sunday that he made “good progress” in shutdown talks over the weekend as the deadline to reach a consensus looms over Congress.

“I feel we made some good progress this weekend. When Republicans took the majority, we wanted to change Washington,” he told Fox News’s Maria Bartiromo on “Sunday Morning Futures.” “We make members show up for work, no more proxy voting, bills have to go through committee, no more of these omnibuses where bills — the appropriation bills get jam to us on Christmas time. But what we’re trying to do is pass them individually.”

He also discussed the move by House GOP leaders to halt a Department of Defense appropriations bill over pressure from a subsection of conservative members. Hard-line conservatives have been battling with GOP leadership for months over top-line spending levels, but McCarthy said he hopes they will not stop them from getting their work done.

“Unfortunately, I had a handful of members last week — that literally the Republicans stopped the Department of Defense appropriations from coming forward,” he said. “None of them can complain. This is giving our troops a pay raise, making our military strong against China, getting the wokeism that the Democrats have put in, out.”

“And so I’m trying to get that to move forward to stop — make sure that the Republicans aren’t stopping us from being able to get our work done before the 30th,” he said.

McCarthy’s comments demonstrate a struggle to unite his caucus as a government shutdown looms and a potential motion to vacate threatens his Speakership.

The GOP divide on appropriations bills come as Congress has only two weeks to pass a continuing resolution to avoid a government shutdown. It also comes as a handful of GOP members, spearheaded by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), are threatening a motion to vacate McCarthy from the Speakership.

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