Congress expected to vote on budget to avert government shutdown

Congress expected to vote on budget to avert government shutdown

The U.S. government was shut down after midnight Friday when Congress missed a deadline to renew the federal government's funding.

Federal financing for USA government agencies ceased at midnight after Congress failed to pass a bipartisan budget deal that would have prevented this year's second shutdown from happening.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., filed a motion to end debate on the budget deal late Wednesday night.

This time around, Senate leaders from both parties nudged Paul to stop holding up the vote.

The plan to keep the government operating and to increase spending over the next two years faced resistance from conservatives in the Republican Party.

The most recent shutdown began on January 20 and lasted almost three days, before Democrats caved in on the immigration issue and agreed to the Republican proposal to debate it separately.

The budget being agreed to does not include any sort of immigration reform, but Republicans have said they are willing to work with Democrats on immigration reform.

But many Democrats were unhappy with the compromise as well because it doesn't tackle immigration - specifically addressing the plight of DREAMers, including the roughly 700,000 immigrants who are in the USA illegally after being brought to the country as children and who are enrolled in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which is set to expire on March 5.

Pelosi also sent a letter to her colleagues saying that while the budget deal secured positive domestic spending goals, the lack of a DACA deal meant she would vote against it.


Although officially the government shutdown at midnight, it is possible it will be open for business on Friday.

The bill was later passed in the House despite opposition from both Republican and Democratic members.

The House is set to vote on the package after Senate's approval, although its fate remains uncertain in the House.

In the Senate, one Republican lawmaker - Rand Paul of Kentucky - delayed the final vote until after a midnight deadline when funding for the government ran out and a partial shutdown took effect.

Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D., Ill.) said Thursday that a vote for the proposed congressional budget deal is a vote to deport illegal immigrants brought to the U.S.by their parents. The Trump administration announced last September that it was ending the program.

"If we don't change it, let's have a shutdown", Trump said.

To that end, House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi staged a record eight-hour speech arguing in favor of legislation for young immigrants in the country since childhood who face deportation.

Paul objected to the fact that deal would result in a significant increase in the federal budget deficit without any corresponding cuts to spending. "Right now, we are being called upon to protect them from deportation and we must answer that call", Democratic Congressman Luis Gutierrez of IL said. "I'd love to see a shutdown if we don't get this stuff taken care of". While some Democrats are planning to vote for the deal just to keep the government funded, among other reasons, it is unknown if there are enough Democratic votes to keep Ryan from trying to appeal to the House Freedom Caucus and those voting with them.

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