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U.S. Congress passes 2-week spending bill to avert gov't shutdown
December 8th, 2017 | 11:21 AM | 184 views
U.S. Senate on Thursday evening passed a two-week stopgap spending bill one day before the deadline to avoid government shutdown.
The bill was passed in the Senate by a vote of 81-14. It passed the House earlier Thursday. President Donald Trump is expected to sign it later.
The spending bill will fund the federal government operation through Dec. 22 and give lawmakers more time to negotiate a two-year bipartisan budget deal. Once the budget deal is reached, lawmakers can work out a detailed spending plan that would fund the government through the rest of the fiscal year 2018 ending on Sept. 30 next year.
"We'll be working together in the next two weeks to find a long-term solution to our funding needs while maintaining fiscal discipline," House Speaker Paul Ryan said in a statement after the House vote.
Trump on Thursday met with congressional leaders from both Republican and Democratic parties to discuss the budget deal.
"The President had a constructive meeting with Congressional Leadership and Defense Secretary (James) Mattis, and the parties agreed on the need for eliminating the defense sequester to deal with the grave national security threats we face," said White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders in a statement after the meeting.
Congressional Republicans and Democrats are now having vast differences on issues such as immigration and fiscal discipline.
Democrats said that they would not support any spending bill that doesn't include protections for young people brought to the United States as children and living illegally in the country. Conservative Republicans supported legislation that would cut government spending except for defense.
Both parties will resume negotiations on a two-year budget cap deal Friday, said the White House statement.
courtesy of XINHUA NEWS AGENCY
by Xinhua News
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