Government Shutdown: Framework for 2023 Spending Bill In Place Ahead of Friday Deadline
Congressional leaders have tentatively reached an agreement to prevent a government shutdown ahead of the Friday deadline while also funding the federal government through the end of fiscal 2023.
The agreement comes in the form of a “framework” by top Democrats and Republicans that would boost domestic and defense spending and avert a showdown between President Joe Biden and next year’s Republican-led U.S. House, the Washington Post reported.
In a statement on his website Tuesday, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, said that he, Sen. Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.) and House Appropriations Chairwoman Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) “reached a bipartisan, bicameral framework that should allow us to finish an omnibus appropriations bill that can pass the House and Senate and be signed into law by the President.”
The House was expected to vote as early as Wednesday on a temporary measure that would fund federal agencies and operations through Dec. 23, 2022. The current stopgap funding measure expires at the end of the day on Friday, Dec. 16. If no replacement measure passes by then, many government operations would shut down.
As the WaPo noted, the week-long temporary measure would also give congressional negotiators more time to finalize the details of the omnibus bill, which would keep the federal government running through Sept. 30, 2023 — the end of the current fiscal year.
“We have a framework that provides a path forward to enact an omnibus next week,” said DeLauro said in a statement. “Now, the House and Senate Appropriations Committees will work around-the-clock to negotiate the details of final 2023 spending bills that can be supported by the House and Senate and receive President Biden’s signature.”
Those negotiations are largely focused on a couple of items being pushed by Republican leaders: less spending on domestic programs and more spending on defense.
Negotiators didn’t release government funding totals when they announced the deal, The Hill reported. However, it said that appropriators have largely agreed to an $858 billion defense budget, which would represent a 10% increase over current funding levels.
Democrats reportedly have signaled a willingness to embrace the GOP’s demands in order to secure a spending package before Republicans take control of the House. With a bipartisan framework, Congress could approve the omnibus bill before the holidays, according to The Hill.
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“There’s a lot of work left to do, but we’re optimistic that if we preserve the good faith we’ve seen so far, we will get there,” Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) said on the chamber floor earlier Tuesday.
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