ABC News’ John R. Parkinson reports:
The House of Representatives Tuesday afternoon passed the three-week spending bill to keep the government open through April 8 by a count of 271-158 , but with dozens of Republicans rejecting the latest stop-gap measure, the pressure is mounting on Congressional leaders to reach a compromise to fund the government through the end of the fiscal year.
While the last short-term spending bill received unanimous support from the Republican Conference on March 1, 54 House Republicans peeled off in opposition to the latest short-term bill, with many conservatives taking a stand against funding the government on an incremental basis. Without support from 85 House Democrats, the bill could have failed.
House Speaker John Boehner reacted to the vote, calling it “another step forward in [the House’s] commitment to cutting spending to help end the uncertainty facing job creators” and once again called on Washington Democrats to come up with a counter-offer to the GOP’s spending cuts proposals.
“Enactment of this short-term measure would mean $10 billion in cuts in just five weeks, which is $10 billion more than the Democrats who run Washington originally suggested. But if we’re serious about ending uncertainty for small businesses and helping them get back to creating jobs, we need to cut a lot more,” Boehner, R-Ohio, said. “It’s up to the Senate and the White House to offer a credible plan to fund the government for the rest of the fiscal year while delivering the spending cuts Americans are demanding."
This spending bill includes $6 billion worth of cuts compared to 2010 spending levels, cutting 25 programs for a savings of $3.5 billion and eliminating $2.6 billion in earmarks that were automatically renewed in the CR approved by the Democratic-controlled Congress last December.
The bill now heads to the Senate, where Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has indicated it has enough support to pass ahead of Friday’s deadline to avoid a government shutdown.