Vulnerable senators back Obama on arming Syrian rebels
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Most Democrats facing tough reelection challenges this fall voted to approve a $1 trillion government funding bill to give President Obama new authorization to combat a growing threat from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). 

The stopgap spending bill, which the Senate voted 78-22 to approve, will keep the government funded through Dec. 11, and included authorization to arm and train moderate Syrian rebel groups to fight ISIS and funding for Ebola research.

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But Sen. Mark BegichMark Peter BegichAlaska group backing independent candidate appears linked to Democrats Sullivan wins Alaska Senate GOP primary Alaska political mess has legislators divided over meeting place MORE (D-Alaska), one of the most vulnerable incumbents, opposed the measure because of the ISIS provision.

“I do not support the arming of rebels in Syria,” Begich said.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellSenate Democrats hold talkathon to protest Barrett's Supreme Court nomination Trump looms over Ernst's tough reelection fight in Iowa Democratic senator votes against advancing Amy Coney Barrett nomination while wearing RBG mask MORE (R-Ky.), in a tough reelection fight himself this fall, said the measure was “worth supporting.” 

“This isn’t perfect legislation, but it begins to address many of our constituents’ top concerns without raising discretionary spending,” McConnell said ahead of the vote. “And it positions us for better solutions in the months to come.”

Some senators complained that the issue regarding ISIS and the funding provisions were lumped together, but most seeking reelection wanted to avoid the threat of another government shutdown on Oct. 1. Many also wanted to leave Washington by Friday so they could resume campaigning.

Last October’s government shutdown lasted more than two weeks and was politically unpopular with the public.