Congress approves temporary funding through the holidays, averts shutdown

Washington: Ending the threat of a government shutdown until after the holidays, Congress gave final approval Wednesday night to a temporary government funding package that pushes a confrontation over the federal budget into the new year.

The Senate met into the night to pass the bill with an 87-11 tally and send it to President Joe Biden for his signature one day after it passed the House on an overwhelming bipartisan vote. It provides a funding patch into next year, when the House and Senate will be forced to confront — and somehow overcome — their considerable differences over what funding levels should be.

In the meantime, the bill removes the threat of a government shutdown days before funding would have expired.

“This year, there will be no government shutdown,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said at a news conference after the bill’s passage.

It splits the deadlines for passing full-year appropriations bills into two dates: Jan. 19 for some federal agencies and Feb. 2 for others, creating two deadlines where there will be a risk of a partial government shutdown.

Image courtesy of (PBS)

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