In it, but not of it. TPM DC

GOP Leaders Announce Spending Cut Agreement

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The question for Republicans now is whether they can build a majority around this proposal, which some still view as too meager. They plan to allow open debate on amendments, which could add yet-more cuts to the package. But if conservative members see their amendments scuttled, they could band together and oppose the entire spending package, putting GOP leaders in a real bind.

I asked Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX), a member of GOP leadership if he worries about that outcome.

"I would say that I do not see any group of people that are gathering together to do anything other than to pass this bill," he said.

Indeed, one such conservative, Steve King (R-IA), is rallying members to support a proposal to add drastic cuts to the health care law into the spending bill. He worries he may not be able to build a bloc large enough to force that issue.

"I think if there's an agreement on $100 billion in that room, it's taken some of the air out of the balloon," he told me on his way into the meeting. I'll have to see."

About The Author

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Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at brian@talkingpointsmemo.com