US House approves stop-gap government funding bill

US House approves stop-gap government funding bill

Congress voted Thursday to pass a bill that would extend government funding by two weeks, avoiding a partial government shutdown on Friday pending signature by the president.

The House passed the bill 235-193, with 18 Republicans voting no and 14 Democrats voting yes, and the Senate passed the bill soon after 81-14, with six Republicans, seven Democrats and one independent who caucuses with the Democrats (Bernie Sanders of Vermont) voting no.

The bill was then taken up by the Senate less than an hour later and passed handily, with many Democrats supporting the bill.

"We will not leave here without a DACA fix", House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said. "So they're not showing up for the meeting", Trump told reporters last week.

"We had a productive conversation on a wide variety of issues. Nothing specific has been agreed to, but discussions continue", Schumer and Pelosi said in a joint statement after the meeting.

Pelosi said Democrats will oppose today's expected vote because the legislation lacks funding to address opioid addiction, pensions, community health centers, veteran funding, children's health insurance funding, the Dream Act and emergency disaster relief.

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Without Democrats, House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., is counting on his rank-and-file - including the House Freedom Caucus - to help keep government's doors open.

Trump accused the Democratic leaders of being "all talk" and "no action".

Recent offers between the two sides have not been that far off, but there still isn't an agreement on the spending levels or what will be included in the eventual deal.

While the bill keeps the government running for now, it would set up a pre-Christmas showdown later this month.

Most House Democrats were likely to oppose the short-term bill, but enough were expected to support it in the Senate to allow its passage there, with the idea that Democrats would have some leverage to insist on future spending boosts for health care, infrastructure and other domestic programs that would match increases Republicans want for defense.

Republicans have majorities in both chambers of Congress, but they can not pass spending bills alone. "We're taking them at their word", House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows, North Carolina Republican, said.

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