Appropriations

Appropriations

Senate pushes up votes to 7 p.m.

The Senate is expected to begin a series of three votes around 7 p.m., on a continuing resolution to keep the government running through Dec. 3. 

The measure funds programs at this year's levels and doesn't include the additional $20 billion in spending requests made by the Obama administration, somewhat smoothing its passage. 

Overall, the continuing resolution reduces spending of discretionary programs by $8.2 billion, according to a summary released today by Senate Democrats.


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Senate expected to pass continuing resolution later tonight

The Senate has started consideration of a continuing resolution with three votes expected to begin around 8 p.m., with passage expected Wednesday night. 

The measure, which will keep the government running through Dec. 3 and funds programs at this year's levels, didn't include the additional $20 billion in spending requests made by the Obama administration, somewhat smoothing its passage. 

Overall, the continuing resolution reduces spending of discretionary programs by $8.2 billion, according to a summary released today by Senate Democrats.

Senate Republicans are asking for a couple of major changes to the measure before it heads to the House and is cleared for President Obama's signature. 

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DeMint won't block Senate spending bill

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) said early Wednesday afternoon he won't block a Senate vote on a stopgap spending bill, paving the way for the chamber to adjourn until after the November elections.

DeMint had earlier stated objections to a procedural vote on a continuing resolution to fund the government until December, stating that he did not want Democratic leaders to insert objectionable items or play politics with the spending legislation.

Following a Republican caucus lunch, however, DeMint said, "I want to go home."

"I hadn't seen the adjournment resolution, but if we can get a clean CR I think everyone can go home," DeMint said. "But they've added some things to it. I'm just taking a look at what they are... People are starting to smell the fumes of the airplanes out at the airport, and I know they want to go home."

DeMint said he was unaware of any specific objections to items that have been added to the continuing resolution.

"There was about a page of things, and I haven't gone over it with my staff yet," he said.

--Cross-posted from Blog Briefing Room

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Continuing resolution still on track for completion tonight

Congress is on track to clear a continuing resolution sometime Wednesday night but the timeframe is for passage in the Senate is still unclear. 

Senate Republicans and Democrats said they expect a "clean" bill, legislation without any added projects, to pass tonight, allowing members to head home early to campaign. 

"We're hot-lining it on our side," Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters today. "There's every indication that we may be able to wrap it up sometime later today."

Amendments are a possibility in the Senate on the stopgap spending measure, which needs to pass to avoid a government shutdown before the new fiscal year begins on Friday. 

The House is expected to work on three other bills and pass the CR shortly after the Senate, according to a senior Democratic aide. 

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Senate will probably begin debate on bill Tuesday to keep government running

The Senate could begin debate Tuesday on a bill that would keep the government running at 2010 spending levels.

A vote to end debate on a continuing resolution will take place if an 11:30 a.m. cloture vote fails on legislation that provides a payroll tax holiday to companies that shift overseas jobs to the United States and limits the use of tax deferral, according to a senior Democratic aide. 

Senate Republicans aren't likely to hold up the continuing resolution that is expected to include $14 million for the newly created consumer protection agency. 

Timing of the vote likely means that text of a continuing resolution could be released sometime Monday night. A spending bill for the State Department will be used as the vehicle for the stopgap measure, the aide said. 

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