By Niv Elis
July 24, 2017
House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) on Monday said that funding for President Trump’s controversial border wall is unlikely to cause a government shutdown.
“The odds of a government shutdown are very minimal when it comes to that,” the conservative lawmaker said at an event in Washington, D.C.
“I do think the funding of the border wall will happen,” he added.
Appropriators have set aside $1.6 billion to fund new wall and fencing sections on parts of the U.S.-Mexico border covering a few dozen miles.
Those funds are set to be included in a “minibus” measure combining four security-related appropriations bills that’s scheduled for a vote in the House this week.
The government will run out of funding at the end of September unless the House and Senate agree to a spending plan. Democrats have insisted they would not support funding a new barrier along the border, and were successful in removing its funding from a 2017 spending deal.
Meadows on Monday also said that the 2013 shutdown, which House conservatives helped precipitate and lasted 16 days, was not effective in achieving goals such as withholding funding for the Affordable Care Act.
“Did it accomplish the result that we hoped to accomplish? The answer is no,” Meadows said.
He also predicted that the final spending bill passed by Congress would have more nondefense discretionary spending than the $511 billion in the House’s budget resolution.
The Freedom Caucus has opposed that level without increased cuts to mandatory spending, such as welfare programs.
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