House passes $1.1 trillion government-wide spending bill
- Author: Julie Sanders May 06, 2017,
May 06, 2017, 19:15
President Donald Trump declared Tuesday that the US government "needs a good shutdown" this fall to fix a "mess" in the Senate, signaling on Twitter his displeasure with a bill to keep operations running.
But while Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., was willing to deploy the so-called "nuclear option" to change Senate rules and allow Trump's Supreme Court nominee to advance with a simple majority vote, he and other Republicans have indicated that they are not inclined to lower the voting threshold to overcome a filibuster for legislation.
White House Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said Tuesday that Congress needs to return to the practice of passing one-year appropriations bills and sending them to the White House for approval, not continuing the recent practice of lurching from one stopgap spending bill to the next.
Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer of NY said the spending agreement came from a "bipartisan negotiation", adding, "The leaders - Democrat, Republican, House and Senate - work well together".
Republicans were surprised by tweets from Trump on Tuesday that suggested he was initially unhappy with the measure and might provoke a government shutdown this fall in hopes of getting his way on the wall and other demands.
The president said his party "either needs to elect more Republican Senators in 2018 or change the rules now to 51 percent".
Trump's embrace of such a disruptive event came days after he accused Senate Democrats of seeking that same outcome and obstructing majority Republicans during budget negotiations.
He wrote that Republicans needed to pick up more seats in the 2018 midterm elections or consider changing filibuster rules so that the Senate's minority party can not block bills.
Mr. Mulvaney said he didn't anticipate a government shutdown in September, but he understood the president's frustration over Democrats "spiking the ball" after negotiating with them in good faith, and that a shutdown could happen if they didn't "behave any better".
"They're walking around trying to make it like they pulled one over fast on the president, and I just won't stand for it", Mulvaney said at the briefing.
The deal was expected to fund the government through September 30, 2017.
After a bruising budget battle which saw fellow Republicans jettison many of Trump's election promises, the embattled president lashed out, saying maybe the government should not be funded at all. Mr. Obama held the military hostage to his domestic agenda, and some Democrats wanted this damaging parity to continue as a price of their votes in the Senate.
The plan would add billions for the Pentagon and border security but would not provide any money for Trump's promised border wall with Mexico.
Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly says he's "shocked" by the behavior of lawmakers who are celebrating slowing down its construction. Leaving Washington whipsawed, Trump hours later praised the spending bill as a major accomplishment.
Republican and Democratic negotiators reached the agreement Sunday night, and Vice President Mike Pence told "CBS This Morning" earlier this week that President Trump had signed off on its parameters.
"This bill is far from ideal, but it's better than how we are spending our money today, better than how we were spending our money a year ago", Republican Senator Roy Blunt said on the Senate floor.
The $1.1 trillion bill passed with support from both parties in a 309-118 vote.
Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who helped shepherd the Affordable Care Act into law seven years ago, issued a statement Wednesday shortly after House GOP leaders announced plans to vote on their measure.