A funding bill of $1.3 billion for the United States government was approved by the Congress, for the purposes of military and non-defense expenditure. The approval came on Friday, as the bill has been sent to President Donald Trump, who’ll be signing before implementation.
The bill is welcome news for the government, as it will help avoid a shutdown that was threatening for the federal agencies, who could have been without pay. Now the money will finance government spending until the 30th of September, as the quarrels in Washington came to end, allowing government officials to prioritize the elections, which will be held to in November.
On Thursday, the bill was passed in the House of Representatives with 256 votes for and 167 against, which then made its way to the Senate where it also got the nod with 65 favoring it and 32 in disagreement. It brings to an end the dispute of government funding that has lasted in the Congress for a long while, as the expected date for its finalization was in October last year. However, an agreement could not be reached, thus resulting in a deadlock, which also forced two government shutdowns. The shutdowns were brief and the government had to rely on stop-gap spending bills to get through the challenging period.
The Republican party has had a tough time in getting approval for the budget, since coming into power at the beginning of last year, despite controlling both the chambers of White House and the Congress. Making matters worse was the fact that not all Republicans were in agreement with the bill that was encouraged publicly by their party, with a few of them still voting against it.
Rand Paul, a Republican Senator, criticized the move on social network Twitter, saying that the bill was allowing spending that was not required. He added that both parties and Houses should be ashamed of the $1.3 trillion budget bill, which he specified to be 2,232 pages long. He thought that the money would go on to fund programs that were decades old, as he termed the document ‘monstrous’.
The head of the far-right Freedom Caucus present in the House of Representatives, Mark Meadows, agreed as much saying that voters wanted limited government conservatism and this was not it. The bill was not a neglection of promises made to the voters, but a flat-out rejection he said in a statement on Thursday.
The conservatives, though, do have something to cheer about as the provisions in the legislations contain border security funds and military budgets, which have been increased by $80 billion. However, what bothered them was the telling increase in the non-defense spending, as out of the 238 Republicans present in the House, 90 voted against the proposed bill. There have also been tax cuts recently, which combined with this mega-money bill, will add to the concerns of the conservatives. Both the events have resulted in a budget deficits of over $800 billion for this year, and according to the conservatives, the Republicans could be facing problems in the November elections as a result.