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EXCLUSIVE: The House Freedom Caucus is pressing GOP leaders in the House and Senate to reject any “lame duck” government appropriations package as Congress prepares to put together a bill to fund the government ahead of the 2022 midterm elections.
In a letter first obtained by Fox News Digital to House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Senate Minority Leaders Mitch McConnell, the HFC members have three major asks of GOP leadership: reject any measure to fund the government that would prevent the next Congress from setting spending levels ; reduces the fiscal year 2023 appropriations spending top line; and add language in appropriations bills to secure the southern border, lower energy prices and end COVID-19 vaccine mandates.
“The American people literally cannot afford another Democrat-led spending measure that would exacerbate inflation and continue to fund the very agencies waging war on their freedoms,” write the House Republicans led by Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa.
“So, we urge you to reject any attempt to pass a FY 2023 omnibus appropriations measure this Congress – whether it is in response to the September 30th spending deadline or in the upcoming lame duck session – and rule out any ‘continuing resolution’ that does not extend funding to the 118th Congress,” they continue.
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Government funding is set to run out at the end of the fiscal year, on Sept. 30.
Republicans in the Senate have threatened to tank a continuing resolution as payback for the passage of Sen. Joe Manchin, DW.Va., and Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s “Inflation Reduction Act.”
“I will not vote for a continuing resolution that is part of a political payback scheme,” Sen. Lindsey Graham, RS.C., said earlier this month. “Sen. Manchin, if you think you’re going to get 60 votes, to get to sweeteners that can’t be done in reconciliation, you need to think long and hard about what you’re doing.”
Sen. Roger Marshall, R-Kan., also said he would oppose a continuing resolution on those grounds.
The Senate ended up passing the bill along party lines, with Vice President Kamala Harris casting a tie-breaking vote.
The House Republicans write in their letter that they “strongly encourage” GOP leadership to support an FY 2023 appropriations package that would both reduce overall spending and include Republican policy priorities, including a Hyde Amendment provision to protect life.
“Finally, Republicans must fully repeal and defund the so-called ‘Inflation Reduction Act’ as soon as possible. Reducing spending to pre-COVID-19 levels, adopting conservative policy riders, and repeating Democrats’ disastrous tax and spend reconciliation measure would curb inflation, while restricting the Biden administration’s ability to inflict harm on the American people,” the HFC Republicans write.
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The lawmakers also demand that appropriations include efforts to “unleash American energy” and bring down gas prices. In addition, they urge Republicans to reject any measure that “fails to make the policy changes necessary to secure the southern border.”
They also ask that the GOP stands strong behind getting rid of any Biden administration-enforced “tyrannical” COVID-19 mandates, which they say is contributing to labor shortages.
McCarthy and McConnell did not immediately respond to requests for comment by Fox News Digital.
Fox News’ Tyler Olson contributed to this report.