Congress is inching closer to a two-year budget agreement on discretionary spending caps but House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Kern) said another short-term continuing resolution is likely. The current stopgap measure expires on January 19, 2018 and after a budget agreement is reached, lawmakers will still need to negotiate how to appropriate funds for Fiscal Year 2018.
Negotiations on the spending limits have been held up for weeks by partisan fights over military and non-defense spending. Democrats are demanding a “spirit of parity” within the budget which would require increases in military spending be met with an equal increase in non-defense spending. In response, Republicans are expected to raise military spending levels well beyond what was requested by the Pentagon which would allow them to increase non-defense spending programs to appease Democrats without giving them parity.