March 22, 2018

Federal government will shut down, Senate in recess until after midnight

10 February 2018, 09:18 | Taylor George

Rand Paul holds up vote on government funding bill as Congress approaches shutdown deadline

Shutdown Showdown On Capitol Hill

Eventually, the Senate voted for the bill and sent it to the House, where 67 Republicans in the GOP-controlled chamber voted against the plan. This followed objections from Democrats over the absence of any immigration component and from fiscal conservatives over the sheer level of spending.

United States president Donald Trump has signed a 400 billion dollar (£287 billion) budget deal that sharply boosts spending and swells the federal deficit, ending a brief federal government shutdown that took place while most Americans were sleeping.

The bill, which includes a far-reaching agreement that increases spending limits for the next two years and raises the federal debt ceiling until March 2019, would break the cycle of government funding crises in time for what is set to be a bruising campaign for November's mid-term elections.

Paul said he objected to the deal to lift budget caps over the next two years, which, alongside the GOP's tax cuts passed late last year, will add further to the deficit, and blasted the process around the debate itself.

The House approved the bill by 240 votes to 186. And honestly, I want them to have to answer that, too.

Trump says, "Without more Republicans in Congress, we were forced to increase spending on things we do not like or want" to help the USA military. After the "Schumer Shutdown", in which the Senator ordered his colleagues to filibuster the continuing resolution without DACA, the Senate Minority Leader caved to pressure from moderate Democrats and the President, effectively stripping him of all political capital. But they pointed to money they have long sought for the Pentagon, which they say needs huge sums for readiness, training and weapons modernization.

House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi and others in her party had opposed the bill because Republican House leaders would not guarantee her a debate later on bipartisan steps to protect about 700,000 "Dreamer" immigrants from deportation.

He also reiterated his call for voters to elect more Republicans to avoid that down the road.

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Ryan insisted he's committed to bringing an immigration bill to the floor, but said it must be one that President Trump will sign. We support funding for our military, but growing the size of government by 13 percent adds to the swamp instead of draining it.

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"If you're against president (Barack) Obama's deficits, but you're for the Republican deficits, isn't that the very definition of hypocrisy?" he boomed, adding that he wants his fellow lawmakers "to feel uncomfortable" over the impasse. "That's apparently so outrageous that the Senate leadership would rather go past midnight than allow a senator his voice and a vote". It would raise military and domestic spending by almost $300 billion (€250 billion) over two years.

"We will bring a solution to the floor, one that the president will sign", said Ryan.

Paul, a fiscal conservative from the state of Kentucky, said he could not allow a quick vote to take place because the proposed measure - which would fund the government for another six weeks - would also expand the USA deficit.

"Neither side got everything it wanted in this agreement, but we reached a bipartisan compromise that puts the safety and well-being of the American people first", Ryan said in a statement after the measure passed. Rand Paul prevented the deal from advancing Thursday. The truth is, if you are only against deficits when they are the opposite party's deficits, then you're not against deficits at all - you're just a partisan hack. The Democrats also want to make the immigrants eligible for citizenship or permanent residence.

A senior official said the White House instructed agencies to begin shutdown preparations in the event that Congress is unable to pass the budget deal.

Legislators have a March 5 deadline to address fixes to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

Ryan said Tuesday he "share [s]" a commitment to solving the issue.

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