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McConnell Repeats Promise of No More Federal Shutdowns

Image: McConnell speaks at the Wall Street Journal's CEO Council meeting in Washington
Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell pauses while speaking at a session called "The Republican Agenda" during the Wall Street Journal's CEO Council meeting in Washington December 2, 2014. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS BUSINESS)Reuters

Senate Minority Leader (and soon-to-be Majority Leader) Mitch McConnell reiterated his promise Tuesday that he will not allow a federal shutdown or debt ceiling showdown on his watch.

"I made it very clear the day after the election," McConnell said during a q-and-a session at the Wall Street Journal CEO Council in Washington, D.C. "There'll be no more government shutdowns or threats to default on our national debt."

The Kentucky senator also said he would like to see Congress address immigration reform in a piecemeal fashion rather than the comprehensive approach taken by the Senate last year.

"I would bust it up," he said. "If I were setting the agenda in the Senate, I'd start with border security."

McConnell added that the legislation should be open to amendments but warned that it's unclear how Democratic priorities for immigration reform would fare in the GOP-dominated Senate next year.

But when asked about how he plans to control his caucus - in the short term - to prevent a potential funding battle over President Barack Obama's immigration order this month, McConnell did not offer much detail.

"Well, in the short-term, the Senate will be in a reactive role. We're going to support what the House Republicans send over to us," he said. "Next year, we'll be sort-of more co-equal partners on that issue. But right now, our view is once it's sorted out in the House, once it gets passed, I'll be supportive of that."