Van Hollen reserves judgment on spending deal
Noting that it's not yet clear which programs would be cut, Rep. Chris Van Hollen said he is reserving judgment on the 11th-hour spending plan negotiated Friday between the White House and Republicans in Congress.
Uncertainty over the specifics of the proposal, which broadly calls for $38 billion in cuts, could make for another messy showdown when the measure comes up for a vote this week. Congress passed a stop-gap spending plan Saturday to give lawmakers until April 15 to work out the details of the bill.
Montgomery County's Van Hollen, the top-ranking Democrat on the House Budget Committee, said Sunday that lawmakers are still "sifting through" the specifics of the proposal. "We don't know yet what the cuts are," he said.
Van Hollen appeared on ABC's "This Week." He said he does ultimately expect Congress to approve the spending bill, which will fund the government through September.
Rep. Mike Pence, who squared off with Van Hollen on the program, said he did not expect to support the deal but said he, too, is still waiting for specifics. Pence, an Indiana Republican, authored a provision that would have cut federal funding for Planned Parenthood. That "policy rider" became a sticking point in talks last week and ultimately was not included in the deal.
"This county's in trouble," Pence said. "We were asking for a 2 percent cut in the budget and that ended up being too much of a cut."