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GOP infighting stalls budget plan

GOP infighting stalls budget plan

The House Budget Committee will not mark up a budget resolution this week, as it had hoped to, amid lingering disagreements within the Republican caucus over spending levels. "We are going to bring a budget out of our committee and then whatever happens to it next will be up to the conference".

The House budget committee is putting its budget markup on hold as conservatives and moderates in the Republican conference are divided over how the budget would reduce mandatory spending.

"I don't think we're there yet", said Rep. Mark Sanford, South Carolina Republican and another budget committee member.

Conservatives are demanding greater cuts to benefit programs such as food stamps, but are meeting resistance from other Republicans, including Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway, R-Texas, who are balking at politically hard cuts to the program and the possibility of cuts to farm programs.

"We're just working really hard to get the final numbers put out", said Budget Committee Chairman Diane BlackDiane BlackHouse budget plan delayed again over welfare cuts Lawmakers celebrate National Selfie Day on Twitter Ryan: Some tax-reform provisions don't have to be permanent MORE (R-Tenn.).

Black said she was confident a House budget would eventually be passed out of committee, saying she was working to finalize a deal that had support of both the panel members and the broader Republican conference.

"I do see a viable path, and I am going to continue to push until we have that 218".

Some committee chairmen are raising concerns about the additional cuts they would be tasked with coming up with if the budget called for $200 billion in savings.

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"Fifty billion dollars is a lot of money", said Rep. Mike Conaway, agriculture committee chairman. Meanwhile, committee chairmen are pushing back on a continually increasing target, saying they need to preserve some of those savings for other legislative negotiations.

"There's a few people resisting just 10 billion", he said.

But if the cuts get too deep, any deal could ultimately turn off moderates.

Centrist GOP Rep. Charlie Dent of Pennsylvania told reporters that setting $150 billion as a goal in deficit savings was aggressive but attempting to go beyond that number hurt the chances for the party to get tax reform done.

Meadows said the Freedom Caucus has shown a willingness to support the higher topline numbers the Budget Committee has negotiated if they were paired with more mandatory savings cuts.

Republicans want to use next year's budget blueprint as a vehicle for a procedural tool known as reconciliation, which they plan to use to pass an overhaul of the tax code.

Black said she did not have a date for when the budget will be released but she remains "adamant" that House Republicans will get to one, noting they are "very close".

"If we want to deal with the entitlement issues, I say deal with [them] in next year's budget - not this year when we're trying to get tax reform" done, he said.


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