By Stephen Dinan-The Washington Times -- House Republicans passed their stopgap funding bill Friday to keep government open while terminating the new health care law, setting up a final showdown next week with Senate Democrats and President Obama who have firmly rejected the GOP approach.
The 230-189 vote, which split almost exactly along party lines, is the precursor to the big action next week, when the Democratic majority in the Senate is expected to strip out the health care provisions and send the bill back to the House ó where Republicans will have to decide whether they can accept it at that point.
All sides are racing to beat a Sept. 30 deadline, which is when current funding for the federal government runs out. The new measure would fund the government through Dec. 15, essentially at last yearís levels, and would leave the budget sequester cuts in place.
But Republicans on Friday also attached two amendments to the final bill ó one to direct how government spending is prioritized in the event the Treasury Department bumps up against its borrowing limit in the coming weeks, and another that strips out funding for President Obamaís signature Affordable Care Act, which would effectively stop its implementation.
ďThe American people donít want the government shut down, and they donít want Obamacare,Ē said House Speaker John A. Boehner, who rallied with fellow Republicans after the vote in a show of unity that seemed designed to quell speculation about a rebellion within the House Republican Conference.
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