As you probably recall, the federal government is currently funded until the end of April by a continuing resolution that was passed in December. The continuing resolution that was passed in December was actually a continuation of previous resolution that was passed at the end of September. The continuing resolution that was passed in September was a continuation of the Fiscal 2016 budget. And the Fiscal 2016 budget itself was a continuation of the Fiscal 2015 budget.
Congress has not passed a comprehensive budget through the appropriations process since they took total control of Congress in 2014, but even though they now control both chambers of Congress and the White House, they still have no plans to pass a budget through the appropriates process.
Republicans are currently meeting in Philadelphia where they've laid out their plans for the next 200 days; plans that reportedly do not include appropriations.
Republicans on Wednesday laid out “a heavy non-appropriations agenda,” in the words of McConnell, that includes numerous steps on repealing and replacing Obamacare, implementing a massive tax overhaul by August, and somehow working into the mix an infrastructure bill and a border supplemental that will fund construction of a wall between the U.S. and Mexico.
For those counting, the GOP's agenda will take us well beyond the expiration of the current continuing resolution that funds the federal government in Fiscal 2017 and bring us very close to Fiscal 2018.
In addition to their plan to pass massive tax cuts "by August," Speaker Paul Ryan also indicated this morning that the GOP will fund Trump's fantasy border wall at some point by next Fall, meaning they're not exactly in an hurry to do that either.
At some point between now and Fiscal 2018 (October 1st), they allegedly plan to repeal and replace Obamacare, but I just can't see how they're going to do that.
If they can't even handle appropriations while they control both chambers and the White House, how the fuck are they going to repeal and replace Obamacare?
I have no idea and I suspect they also have no idea. Reorganizing our entire healthcare system is a significantly bigger deal than passing an appropriations bill for transportation or agriculture.
Presumably, their Fiscal 2017 "budget" that funds the government between May and October will include the repeal of Obamacare, but they haven't even really started on it. They haven't held any committee hearings on repealing the law or replacing it.
This isn't necessarily a story of them trying and failing to pass appropriations bills. They're just not even going to try because they know they can't do it.
Look, this may be for the best. A year from now, we could still be operating under a budget that was signed by President Obama. Hell, that might be the case two years from now. I've grown to never underestimate Republican incompetence.