Analysis: House GOP battles to write budget bill it can live with

Wednesday - 3/7/2012, 11:42am EST

Bob Cusack, managing editor, The Hill

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House Republicans are trying to pass a budget that will set out the parameters for spending for federal departments and agencies.

"This is really an election-year document, because they want to pass a bill," said Bob Cusack, managing editor at The Hill newspaper. "House Republicans have been criticizing Senate Democrats for not passing a budget, but the dilemma is they need to get the votes."

Last year, the House Republicans set out parameters at a level of $1.047 trillion as part of a bipartisan budget deal. "Conservatives want that lower, closer to $1 trillion," Cusack said.

This has led to a battle between conservatives in the House and Republican appropriators who will have to take the budget and put it into practice to set parameters for federal agencies.

"What they say is, 'Unless you give us more money, we're not going to be able to pass those individual bills and it's going to be very embarrassing in an election year,'" he said.

Cusack joined The Federal Drive with Tom Temin Wednesday to discuss the likelihood of the GOP avoiding a "dysfunctional" appropriations process prior to November's election.