House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries argued on Sunday that his Republicans colleagues are “in the middle of a civil war” over the best way forward amid a newly launched impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden, an ongoing spending fight and another looming shutdown of the federal government.
“Civil war has the following attributes: chaos, dysfunction and extremism. The House Republican civil war is hurting hardworking American taxpayers and limiting our ability to be able to solve problems on their behalf,” Jeffries told ABC “This Week” co-anchor Jonathan Karl, in an exclusive interview.
“It’s unfortunate. But as House Democrats, we’re going to continue to try to find common ground with the other side of the aisle,” Jeffries said, adding: “Hopefully the House Republicans will come along so that we can work to make sure we are funding the government.”
Jeffries also said the White House “will continue to cooperate” with the impeachment inquiry “because there is nothing to hide.”
Rep. Nancy Mace, R-S.C., appeared on “This Week” after Jeffries and acknowledged the GOP has its issues with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy but shot back: “I find it a little bit hypocritical that that is the divisive language that he used in his interview and talking about people over politics.”
Referring to an earlier agreement on raising the nation’s debt ceiling, Mace added, “If Democrats and, quite frankly, Republicans wanted to put people over politics, they would not have joined hands earlier this year to add $18.8 trillion to the debt.”
Jeffries, in his own interview, laid the blame with the House’s conservative majority, contending that Democrats want to “end the partisan, political gamesmanship that right now has captured House Republicans.”
As Mace suggested, a major sticking point is on whether — and where — to cut government spending.
The House has only cleared one of 12 appropriations bills. So far, House Democrats have voted against the GOP funding bills since the conference marked the bills at levels lower than the spending caps agreed to by McCarthy and Biden in the debt-limit deal in June.
Asked about a possible federal government shutdown, Jeffries on Sunday called on Republicans to “stop fighting each other” and said he expects more conversations to occur but didn’t say if he’s discussed a path forward with McCarthy.
As some Republican members threaten to bring a motion to vacate to oust McCarthy, Jeffries also wouldn’t say if House Democrats would help bail out the speaker.
“We haven’t given it any thought one way or the other,” he said.
“But what we should be focused on right now is avoiding an unnecessary government shutdown that will hurt the ability of our economy to continue to recover,” he added.
Impeachment, Hunter Biden, more
On “This Week,” Jeffries addressed the new impeachment inquiry into Biden, with McCarthy claiming a “culture of corruption” around the president — which the White House calls baseless.
“There are no facts on…