President Donald Trump called on House Republicans negotiating a spending bill to avoid a government shutdown to use the opportunity to defund what he described as “political prosecutions” against him and other individuals who are being targeted by the Department of Justice.
“A very important deadline is approaching at the end of the month. Republicans in Congress can and must defund all aspects of Crooked Joe Biden’s weaponized Government that refuses to close the Border, and treats half the Country as Enemies of the State,” the former president stated on social media. “This is also the last chance to defund these political prosecutions against me and other Patriots.”
President Trump also made reference to congressional negotiations on raising the debt limit earlier this year, saying that Republicans “failed” but “must not fail now.” Those Republicans, he argued, have to “use the power of the purse to defend” the United States.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) has previously confirmed that activities funded by “permanent indefinite appropriations” would continue during any funding lapse, including the Trump prosecutions. The former president, meanwhile, faces state charges in Georgia and New York, which would not be affected by a federal shutdown.
Republicans in the House of Representatives have been at odds over how to proceed with spending legislation, which has to be passed before Oct. 1 to avoid a partial shutdown of the government. A small number of House Republicans have said they disagree with the plan proposed by House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) as he pushes for short-term funding.
After President Trump’s comment on Wednesday, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), who has opposed Mr. McCarthy’s plan, wrote on social media that “Trump opposes the continuing resolution” to keep the government funding. “Hold the line,” he added.
If Mr. McCarthy doesn’t get his caucus to back his plan, he would have to make concessions to some Democrat lawmakers to avoid a shutdown. That’s something Mr. Gaetz said would cost the House speaker dearly.
“If Speaker McCarthy relies on Democrats to pass a continuing resolution, I would call the Capitol moving truck to his office pretty soon because my expectation would be he’d be out of the speaker’s office quite promptly,” the Florida Republican told CNN on Wednesday.
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