House, Senate both approve bill to delay partial government shutdown

WASHINGTON — Almost twice as many Democrats as Republicans voted in favor of a bill to provide stopgap funding for federal agencies, pushing back the deadlines that would have triggered a partial government shutdown Friday.

Four Georgia Republicans joined all five Democrats in the state’s U.S. House delegation in supporting the measure, known as a “continuing resolution,” to keep current funding levels in place temporarily. The new funding would run out March 8 for some agencies and March 22 for the remaining ones.

The Senate passed the bill on Thursday evening, sending it to President Joe Biden to be signed into law. Georgia U.S. Sens. Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock both voted in favor of the measure; the vote in that chamber was 77-13.

U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter, R-St. Simons Island, was among the 113 House Republicans supporting the bill, joining 207 Democrats. Carter said he wanted to give Speaker Mike Johnson more time to negotiate long-term spending agreements with the Senate. While Republicans have a thin majority in the House, Democrats hold the power in the Senate.

“I’m putting faith in the leadership that they’re telling me the truth that they’re very close to a deal,” Carter said prior to the vote. “And if that’s the case, then I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.”

The vote marked the third time that under Johnson, a Republican from Louisiana, the House approved short-term spending extensions to avoid a government shutdown. Each time, Johnson has said House budget negotiators needed additional time to iron out long-term spending bills to bring to the House floor.

The federal fiscal year began Oct. 1, but the government has been funded using continuing resolutions because no agreements have been reached.

Under the most recent proposal, Johnson joined leaders from both parties in the House and Senate who said they have reached an agreement on six appropriations bills. The plan is to bring those measures to the House floor next week.

If that can be accomplished, there will still be six other spending bills that need to be negotiated ahead of a March 22 deadline to prevent the agencies covered by these measures from being shuttered.

U.S. Rep. Rick Allen, R-Augusta, was among the five Georgia Republicans who voted against the measure. Unlike the other four, Allen previously has supported continuing resolutions extending current funding levels temporarily to keep agencies open.

“Congressman Allen was hopeful the House would remain in session and continue working on solutions rather than passing a one-week CR,” his spokesman told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Allen did not immediately respond to a request for comment about why he decided to oppose stopgap funding this time.

U.S. Rep. Rich McCormick, R-Suwanee, was also among 97 Republicans who opposed the measure alongside two Democrats. The final tally was 320-99.

McCormick said he will continue to oppose government funding legislation unless language is added to include border security provisions backed by conservatives in the House. He said the Senate did not go far enough when it passed a bipartisan bill that would’ve made it harder for migrants to apply for asylum once they’ve entered the country illegally and allowed the president to shut down the border once certain limits were reached.

He supports a House measure that would tighten limits on granting asylum, crack down on immigrants already in the country after illegally crossing the border and complete construction of a wall along the southern border.

McCormick said immigration is at the top of voters’ minds, and he won’t sign off on legislation to avoid a shutdown unless those concerns are addressed simultaneously.

But McCormick also said he doesn’t blame Johnson for relying on Democrats to pass the bill and keep federal agencies funded.

“I want to be gracious toward our speaker,” McCormick said, “who I think is trying to do the right thing and avoid shutting down the federal government.”



U.S. Sen. Jon Ossoff, D-Atlanta

U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock, D-Atlanta

U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop, D-Albany

U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter, R-St. Simons Island

U.S. Rep. Drew Ferguson, R-The Rock

U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Lithonia

U.S. Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Cassville

U.S. Rep. Lucy McBath, D-Marietta

U.S. Rep. Austin Scott, R-Tifton

U.S. Rep. David Scott, D-Atlanta

U.S. Rep. Nikema Williams, D-Atlanta


U.S. Rep. Rick Allen, R-Augusta

U.S. Rep. Andrew Clyde, R-Athens

U.S. Rep. Mike Collins, R-Jackson

U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Rome

U.S. Rep. Rich McCormick, R-Suwanee