The Senate voted overwhelmingly Wednesday in favor of a funding bill that would avert a government shutdown and fund federal agencies through Dec. 11.
The measure, which also provides emergency funding to fight wildfires and extends the expiring authority of the Federal Aviation Administration, passed the Senate by a vote of 78-20.
The House is expected to approve the bill later in the day, ahead of the midnight deadline for keeping the government open.
GOP leaders appear to have avoided, for now, the prospect of a government shutdown, which some conservatives had threatened to gain leverage in their effort to defund Planned Parenthood.
The stopgap buys President Obama, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellFive fights for Trump’s first year Warren builds her brand with 2020 down the road AACR’s march on Washington MORE (R-Ky.), outgoing Speaker John BoehnerJohn BoehnerLobbyists bounce back under Trump Business groups silent on Trump's Ex-Im nominee Chaffetz won't run for reelection MORE (R-Ohio) and BoehnerJohn BoehnerLobbyists bounce back under Trump Business groups silent on Trump's Ex-Im nominee Chaffetz won't run for reelection MORE's successor just more than two months to craft a broader year-end spending deal.
McConnell and Boehner spoke to Obama last week to lay the groundwork for the budget summit, which leaders hope will set the top-line spending numbers for fiscal 2016 and 2017.
In the meantime, McConnell plans to bring several appropriations bills to the Senate floor and force Democrats to vote on them in a bid to highlight their obstruction. Democrats have vowed to filibuster the spending measures, because they follow the spending caps set by the 2011 Budget Control Act.
“Now that the [continuing resolution] appears to be on track, we can turn back to the last step in the Senate’s normal appropriations process and that is getting the funding bills passed here on the floor,” McConnell said.
Senate Democratic Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidWarren builds her brand with 2020 down the road 'Tuesday Group' turncoats must use recess to regroup on ObamaCare Dem senator says his party will restore 60-vote Supreme Court filibuster MORE (Nev.) criticized the GOP leader for bringing legislation to the floor that he said has little chance of passing without a budget deal.
“We’ve gotten nothing done, Mr. President, nothing done under the leadership,” Reid said, addressing the presiding chair. “I’m reminded what Albert Einstein said when he defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”
Sen. Ted CruzTed CruzWarren builds her brand with 2020 down the road Trump wall faces skepticism on border No Congress members along Mexico border support funding Trump's wall MORE (R-Texas), who is running for president, was the Senate’s most vocal advocate for opposing any funding bill that did not defund Planned Parenthood but found little support from fellow Republican senators.
Republican colleagues blocked his effort Monday to add a one-year ban on federal funding for Planned Parenthood to the stopgap appropriations measure. The Senate voted 77-19 Monday to advance the continuing resolution stripped of policy riders.
A group of House conservatives plan to follow Cruz and offer an amendment defunding Planned Parenthood to the stopgap when it reaches the Rules Committee later Wednesday.
That gambit is expected to fail, as many Republicans have already signaled support for a clean short-term funding measure, but the vote will allow conservatives to formally register their opposition to funding Planned Parenthood.