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Speaker Kevin McCarthy vexed by conservative revolt as House returns to Washington

Freedom Caucus hard-liners are pushing Mr. McCarthy to agree to a $130 billion spending

cut. The figure stands in direct contradiction to the debt-limit agreement Mr. McCarthy struck with the White House, which keeps domestic spending flat while hiking the defense budget by more than 3%. Mr. McCarthy has hinted that the agreement to keep spending flat is merely a ceiling, not a floor. “Whenever you put a cap, that’s the ceiling,” the speaker said. “We can always spend less. I’ve always advocated for spending less.”

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