Johnson to face Republican critics of short-term funding bill as Friday shutdown deadline looms

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Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., is facing his GOP conference in person on Wednesday morning for the first time since congressional leaders released a bipartisan deal to avert a government shutdown. 

Lawmakers are facing a Jan. 19 deadline to fund some parts of the government – historically less controversial appropriations concerning military construction and Veterans Affairs; Agriculture; Energy and Water; Transportation and Housing and Urban Development – and a Feb. 2 deadline for the remaining agencies, including the Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security.

But Johnson announced over the weekend that he and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., had come to an agreement to extend those respective deadlines to March 1 and March 8 to give negotiators more time to make a deal on funding the government for the remainder of fiscal year 2024.

JOHNSON CAUGHT BETWEEN WARRING HOUSE GOP FACTIONS: ‘DRIFTING TOWARD MOB RULE’

House Speaker Mike Johnson walks back to his office following a vote in the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 11, 2024. (Anna Rose Layden/Getty Images)

The path forward on government funding is likely to be a main topic of discussion at House Republicans’ next weekly conference meeting, multiple sources speculated to Fox News Digital.

The meeting is currently expected for Wednesday morning despite weather conditions forcing the House to cancel its Tuesday evening votes.

HOUSE, SENATE RELEASE BIPARTISAN AGREEMENT ON GOVERNMENT FUNDING AS SHUTDOWN DEADLINES LOOM

One House GOP aide who spoke with Fox News Digital predicted “a showdown” within the party over the short-term spending bill called a continuing resolution (CR). The aide told Fox News Digital they anticipate more resistance among the GOP than past CR votes have seen.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer

Johnson and Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer are focusing on a bipartisan path to funding the government. (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

When Johnson last passed a CR in November, it saw 93 Republican defections. He pledged at the time to be “done” with short-term CRs, a declaration met with enthusiasm by GOP lawmakers in the House.

The latest short-term extension is still likely to pass with support from both Republicans and Democrats, but not without criticism from Johnson’s right flank – criticism he’s likely to get a preview of Wednesday morning when GOP lawmakers huddle behind closed doors to discuss what’s next for their conference.

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“There is nothing new or novel about surrendering now and promising to fight tomorrow. Wasn’t the laddered CR supposed to provide some sort of leverage?” Rep. Warren Davidson, R-Ohio, a member of the House Freedom Caucus, wrote on X Tuesday.

Warren Davidson

House Freedom Caucus members like Rep. Warren Davidson are opposed to any more CRs. (Getty Images)

“Sadly, an agreement seems to have been made by 4-corners again, in violation of many [House GOP] promises,” Davidson said.

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The Freedom Caucus itself released a statement calling the deal a “surrender.”

“The [House GOP] is planning to pass a short-term spending bill continuing Pelosi levels with Biden policies, to buy time to pass longer-term spending bills at Pelosi levels with Biden policies,” the group said.

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