Senate passes massive spending bill to avoid government shutdown

Senate passes massive spending bill to avoid government shutdown

Senate passes massive spending bill to avoid government shutdown

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced the agreement in floor remarks on Wednesday. The cloture vote on that is expected to be Thursday, at which point they'll strip the House language, and replace it with the Senate language.

News of the agreement comes ahead of the potential government shutdown at the end of Thursday.

If it passes the Senate: The stopgap spending bill would keep the government open through to March 23, thus allowing time to write and pass detailed follow-up "omnibus" legislation to fund the government through to the September 30 end of the fiscal year.

McConnell and Schumer said the deal was the product of extensive negotiations between both parties and the White House, which reacted positively to developments on Capitol Hill.

White House legislative affairs director Marc Short said the package would increase spending by "just shy" of $300bn (£216bn).

The measure will repeal ObamaCare's Independent Payment Advisory Board which was never implemented and will extend the Children's Health Insurance Program by four years.

The taps of government spending are open once more - at least if the US Senate gets its way.

As Senator Paul pointed out, the 650-page spending plan was only unveiled on Wednesday night, so the finer details are unclear.

It's clear there will be a solid bloc of Democrats voting against the budget deal, which would provide $80 billion for defense and $63 billion for non-defense above the spending caps this year, and another $85 billion more for defense and $68 billion more for non-defense in the following year.

Those days are long gone.

Meanwhile, the economy remains strong and Republicans' multi-million dollar efforts to sell their tax cut plan and tie it to economic gains appears to have paid some dividends. A more responsible approach would have been to settle for what Trump requested, or a bit less, while standing firmer on discretionary non-defense spending.

"It's not like Republicans aren't concerned about disaster relief, or Republicans aren't concerned about funding community health centers or dealing with the opioid crisis", U.S. Representative Warren Davidson, a Republican, said in an interview with National Public Radio.

Senate passes massive spending bill to avoid government shutdown
Senate passes massive spending bill to avoid government shutdown

Why are some Democrats unhappy?

Democrats previously wanted to pass a bill protecting hundreds of thousands of young immigrants from deportation in tandem with legislation to raise budget caps.

Her remarks came a day after she told the stories of immigrants for eight hours on the floor of the lower chamber in a record-breaking speech.

The 77-year-old vowed to oppose any budget that does not include protections for so-called Dreamers, young immigrants who entered the USA illegally as children.

Why are some Republicans opposed?

Elements of the Republican Party are also opposed to the bill because of its likely effect on the United States national debt.

Bradley then said he is a "school choice guy" who generally supports the policy in the bill, but objects to the House's hardball with the budget. "I'm a hell no".

Jim Jordan, leader of the budget hawk Freedom Caucus, labelled the plan a "monstrosity", and fellow Freedom Caucus member Mo Brooks called it a "debt junkie's dream".

Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI), a member of the House Freedom Caucus, said, "This spending proposal is disgusting and reckless - the biggest spending increase since 2009". But the pledge that rings hollow to many Democrats who believe the White House's immigration demands are too draconian.

The 71-to-28 Senate vote, which took place just before 2 a.m., capped a topsy-turvy day that featured filibuster threats, fuming congressional leaders, and frenzied vote counting.

Immigration again emerged as a possible point of contention, putting the budget deal in jeopardy. The debt limit would be suspended through March of 2019, Sanders said, putting the next vote on it safely past this year's midterm elections.

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