GOP Pushes for Slashing ‘Overreaching’ Agencies

( – On March 6, the House passed multiple spending bills to prevent the government from partially shutting down. The bipartisan measure would keep several parts of the government open through September and moved to the Senate for quick consideration. House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) touted cuts to several federal agencies while Democrats boasted about funding food assistance programs and raising the pay for firefighters.

On March 6, Newsmax reported that Johnson held a press conference where he talked about cutting 3% of funding for the Department of Justice, 7% from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, 6% from the FBI, and 10% from the Environmental Protection Agency. He claimed that was “just a start,” as Republicans have “a lot more priorities and things” they “need to advance.” Johnson claimed some of those agencies are “overreaching” and have been “going after the people they’re supposed to protect.” He didn’t elaborate on that point.

However, Punchbowl News reported that the cuts were minor and indicated that Johnson was making them appear more dramatic. For instance, the news source said the FBI cut of 7% was mostly caused by funding set aside for an FBI building in Alabama. The senator who earmarked over $600 million for the project, Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) retired when the 118th Congress was sworn in. As such, the earmark went with him. Still, Punchbowl said both Republicans and Democrats are spinning their respective wins in the spending package with nobody getting exactly what they want — a byproduct of compromise.

According to NBC News, certain GOP House members were unhappy about the bipartisan bill passing the Lower Chamber. Representative Ralph Norman (R-SC), a member of the Freedom Caucus, called the spending in the bill “irresponsible.” While not happy with the compromise, the caucus isn’t threatening to remove the speaker from his position—yet—even though he’s working with Democrats to get the deals done.

Johnson said he’s looking forward to beginning the next round of negotiations for the remaining spending bills to keep the rest of the government open.

~Here’s to Our Liberty!

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