Everything to Know About a Potential Government Shutdown as Funding Deadline Approaches

Federal agencies could run out of money at midnight Thursday, but lawmakers have hammered out a stopgap funding measure to prevent a government shutdown.

Rep. Nita Lowey, a Democrat from New York, introduced a continuing resolution Monday that could fund the government through Dec. 20. It includes a funding extension, but the bill leaves out restrictions on spending at the southern border to appease Trump's demands for more wall funding.

The measure is widely expected to pass.

Lawmakers hoped to sort out a more permanent budget for fiscal 2020 by the end of this week, but talks were derailed by disagreements over the impeachment inquiry and border wall efforts, according to several reports. If Congress can set aside differences over the ongoing impeachment hearings in the next two days, President Donald Trump is expected to sign the legislation.

The bill would provide billions of dollars to state highway programs, to the Commerce Department and to bump pay for military members. It doesn't include funding that lapsed in September for historically black colleges and universities according to reporting by POLITICO—a measure Democrats fought for.

Also at issue are budgets for supplemental food programs for seniors, community health centers, diabetes programs, Medicaid services and other federal programs.

"With a government shutdown deadline just days away, this continuing resolution is necessary to keep government open as we work towards completing the appropriations process," Lowey said in a statement Monday.

The Nov. 21 deadline marks the end of a similar resolution that Congress passed just weeks ago. At the time, Trump said he wouldn't commit to ending a government shutdown—possibly the second in a row over the holiday season—but ultimately signed the bill.

House members are expected to vote on Lowey's quick fix Tuesday, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said on Twitter, lending enough time to send it over to the Senate.

The House will vote tomorrow on a continuing resolution to fund government through December 20. We must use this additional time to fully fund the government before the end of the year.

— Steny (Wear a Mask) Hoyer (@LeaderHoyer) November 18, 2019

Some Democrats are wary that Trump may refuse to sign the measure over this week's public impeachment hearings, according to National Public Radio, but Republicans have been dismissive of the idea.

"Of course I think shutdowns are always a bad idea," Rep. Mike Simpson, a Republican from Idaho, told NPR. But "it would be a bad idea for the president to not accept this," he said, adding the continuing resolution should remain uncontroversial.

The massive government shutdown this time last year—the longest in U.S. history—saw hundreds of thousands of government workers furloughed or working without pay, according to several reports, while Trump pushed for more than $5 billion in border wall funding for 35 days.

The following February, the president declared a national emergency in order to finance the wall, but started asking for more money this summer. Citing an influx of migrants, the administration asked Congress for billions of dollars in humanitarian assistance, border operations and mission support, according to the acting director of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget Russ Vought.

Shutdown Looms Over Border Funds, Again
U.S. President Donald Trump talks to reporters during a meeting of his cabinet in the Cabinet Room at the White House February 12, 2019, in Washington, D.C., prior to announcing emergency funding for the wall at the Southern border. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images