Congress recently voted to avoid an upcoming government shutdown, as the deadline occurs in two days. In the midst of impeachment hearings, which have consumed House lawmakers, the legislators passed a continuing resolution to postpone a potential government shutdown and delay another vote until December 20th.
While the vote was productive in that there will not be a government shutdown in two days, it still means that negotiations on spending and the budget are delayed. The vote was 231-192 to pass a month-long continuing resolution to push off the shutdown.
The lawmakers were at a standstill and unable to agree on how to allocate $1.37 trillion in annual spending among twelve bills. Both parties remain unwavering over funding for President Trump’s border wall. Democrats want to prevent Trump from receiving the requested $5 billion for the defense wall and homeland security bill.
The passing of the resolution allows “additional time to negotiate and enact responsible, long-term funding for priorities that make our country safer and stronger” (Rep. Lowey, The Hill).
The passage of the resolution extends funding for the government as well as “provides funding for U.S. census efforts and a 3.1 percent military pay raise.” In addition, funding will be expanded to alleviate “the Ebola outbreak in Africa, extend numerous government health programs,” and provide “a traditional honorarium to the widow of the late Rep. Elijah Cummings” (The Hill), who passed away in October.
The Senate is expected to pass the same resolution, and the White House also plans to lend its support. If lawmakers do not agree on how to allocate the funds by the December 20th deadline, the government risks a shutdown similar to what the nation experienced in 2018.