Several Republican Senators threatened to derail a funding deal that would prevent a government shutdown over the federal vaccine mandate.
The House of Representatives is expected to pass a stop-gap measure on Thursday (December 2) that would fund the government through February, but the bill requires all 100 senators to quickly pass it before Friday's deadline.
Utah Senator Mike Lee said he will object to quickly passing the bill unless there is an amendment to defund the mandate.
"The only thing I want to shut down is enforcement of an immoral, unconstitutional vaccine mandate," he said on the floor of the Senate.
Senator Roger Marshall of Kansas went one step further and demanded a 51-vote threshold for the amendment, suggesting he would object to a vote that would require 60 votes to pass.
Senator Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who helped negotiate the compromise spending bill, said he is hopeful it will pass before Friday's deadline.
"I don't think shutting down the government over this issue is going to get an outcome. It would only create chaos and uncertainty, so I don't think that's the best vehicle to get this job done," he told Fox News.
McConnell pointed out that the mandate has already suffered several legal setbacks and vowed to pass a bill to overturn it if the courts ultimately uphold it.
"I think the courts are likely to get it done, or we'll pass [it] early next week freestanding, a measure to overturn the government mandate," McConnel added. "We're not going to shut the government down. That makes no sense for anyone. Almost no one on either side thinks that's a good idea.