House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows, R-N.C., said Tuesday most of his group's members would be willing to pass a temporary, short-term government funding bill when they return to work in September even if it doesn't include funds for President Trump's border wall, in order to avoid a partial government shutdown.
Congress will have to pass some kind of spending bill in the few days it's in next month in order to avoid a partial shutdown at the end of September. But while President Trump and many other Republicans want to see funding for the border wall, Meadows said it might be best to delay that fight until late this year, which would give Republicans more time to work out those details.
"Most of the conservatives that I talked to are willing to... vote for a continuing resolution that just basically would not have wall funding in it — would continue the current stream of money that keeps the government operational while we work through and negotiate on the appropriations bill," he told ABC News.
"In talking to a number of my members, if there was a vote for a continuing resolution next week that did not include border wall funding, the majority of those members would be supportive of that," Meadows added. He suggested a short-term bill through December or January.
Meadows said taking more time would also help Republicans avoid a possible partial shutdown just as Congress needs to be worried about passing a bill to help provide relief to people in Texas in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.
The border wall is something Republicans will eventually have to deal with, however. During a campaign-style rally last week in Phoenix, President Trump threatened a government shutdown if Congress did not approve funds for for a wall on the southern border.
"The obstructionist Democrats would like us not to do it, but believe me, if we have to close down our government, we're building that wall," Trump said at a rally in Phoenix.
But given the limited time Congress has to work on a bigger spending bill, Meadows' formulation may be the path Republicans choose in order to avoid a crushing load of business in September.
Meadows also said he is opposed to any measure that would provide a "clean" lifting of the nation's debt ceiling – something the Trump administration has said it supports, and another major piece of business that Congress needs to handle.
"A clean debt ceiling is not something that I support," Meadows said. "We've got a fiscal crisis on our hands. We've got out-of-control spending, and yet we continue to raise the debt ceiling over and over again without any thought of how it is going to be paid back."