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Boehner: House Will Pass Stopgap CR

Americans want the government to keep running, so the House will pass a stopgap spending bill to avert a shutdown, Speaker John Boehner will say during a speech Sunday evening.

“We have a moral responsibility to address the problems we face. That means working together to cut spending and rein in government — not shutting it down,” the Ohio Republican will say at the National Religious Broadcasters convention in Nashville, Tenn., according to excerpts released by Boehner’s office Sunday.

The continuing resolution that is currently funding the government expires Friday, and the Senate returns from the Presidents Day recess Monday to consider a House-passed continuing resolution that would cover the remainder of fiscal 2011. However, Senate Democrats have raised significant objections to the bill, and it is unlikely work can be completed by the week’s end.

House Republicans released a two-week continuing resolution late last week that runs from Friday until March 18. It would cut more than $4 billion in federal spending, including $2.7 billion in earmarks. 

“The leader of the United States Senate has refused to allow a vote on this legislation, so the House will pass a shorter-term bill that will also keep the government running while including reasonable spending cuts at the same time,” Boehner will say.

“This is very simple: Americans want the government to stay open, and they want it to spend less money. We don’t need to shut down the government to accomplish that,” he will say. “We just need to do what the American people are asking of us.”

Boehner will also promise to address entitlement spending in the House GOP’s fiscal 2012 budget.

“To not address entitlement programs, as is the case with the budget the president has put forward, would be an economic and moral failure,” he will say. “By acting now, we can fulfill the mission of health and retirement security for all Americans without making changes for those in or near retirement. And we can keep the promises we have made to our children.”

John Stanton contributed to this report.