Democrats take aim at Trump policies by passing $1T spending package

Democrats take aim at Trump policies by passing $1T spending package
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Democrats on Wednesday muscled through a nearly $1 trillion spending bill that attempts to block President TrumpDonald John TrumpDeSantis on Florida schools reopening: 'If you can do Walmart,' then 'we absolutely can do schools' NYT editorial board calls for the reopening of schools with help from federal government's 'checkbook' Mueller pens WaPo op-ed: Roger Stone 'remains a convicted felon, and rightly so' MORE's policies on climate change, abortion and immigration, underscoring Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiAs coronavirus surges, Trump tries to dismantle healthcare for millions Sunday shows preview: Coronavirus poses questions about school safety; Trump commutes Roger Stone sentence Pelosi plans legislation to limit pardons, commutations after Roger Stone move MORE's (D-Calif.) argument that the House can work as a check on the administration.

Lawmakers passed the spending package in a 226-203 vote that fell largely along party lines. Seven Democrats voted against the measure, as did all Republicans.

The legislation includes the two largest government spending bills — one for Defense and one covering Labor, Health and Human Services and Education. It also covers funding bills for foreign operations and energy and water.

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The measure takes aim at a slew of Trump's funding goals, starting with a rejection of his budget request, which proposed deep cuts to the State Department, cuts to the National Institutes of Health, the elimination of advanced energy research and a massive increase in defense spending.

“This bill rejects the administration’s unacceptable budget request and irresponsible policies and, rather, strives to uphold many bipartisan congressional priorities,” said House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Rep. Nita LoweyNita Sue LoweyHouse Democrats push for resuming aid to Palestinians in spending bill House panel approves bill funding WHO, paring back abortion restrictions Democrats sidestep budget deal by seeking 0B in emergency spending MORE (D-N.Y.) ahead of the floor vote.

The Democratic bill would eliminate what's known as the Mexico City policy, which blocks the U.S. from funding foreign groups that promote abortion, and it would prevent withdrawal from the 2015 Paris climate accord. Another provision would fund research into the causes of gun violence.

The measure also includes language that would block funds from being used to ban transgender people from serving in the military and prevent the sale of nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia.

The seven Democrats who voted against the measure were Reps. Denny HeckDennis (Denny) Lynn HeckExclusive: Guccifer 2.0 hacked memos expand on Pennsylvania House races Heck enjoys second political wind Incoming lawmaker feeling a bit overwhelmed MORE (Wash.), Ben McAdams (Utah), Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezGoya CEO dismisses critics for praise of Trump: 'I'm not apologizing' Trump tweets his support for Goya Foods amid boycott Hispanic Caucus requests meeting with private detention center CEOs MORE (N.Y.), Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarTucker Carlson ratchets up criticism of Duckworth, calls her a 'coward' The Hill's Campaign Report: Colorado, Utah primary results bring upsets, intrigue Progressive lawmakers call for conditions on Israel aid MORE (Minn.), Collin PetersonCollin Clark PetersonHouse approves statehood for DC in 232-180 vote House to pass sweeping police reform legislation From farmers to grocery store clerks, thank you to all of our food system MORE (Minn.), Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyThe Hill's Campaign Report: Colorado, Utah primary results bring upsets, intrigue Progressives zero in on another House chairman in primary Ocasio-Cortez pitches interns to work for her instead of McConnell MORE (Mass.) and Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibDemocrats see victory in Trump culture war The Hill's Campaign Report: Colorado, Utah primary results bring upsets, intrigue Progressive lawmakers call for conditions on Israel aid MORE (Mich.).

Republicans slammed the spending package, saying it includes provisions that will invite a veto from Trump.

“This package has become a partisan vehicle, under-funding defense priorities, over-funding non-defense programs, carrying poison pills, and delaying action to address the crisis at our southern border,” said Rep. Kay GrangerNorvell (Kay) Kay GrangerHouse panel approves bill funding WHO, paring back abortion restrictions On The Money: Deficit rises to record .7 trillion amid pandemic: CBO | Democrats sidestep budget deal by seeking 0B in emergency spending | House panel advances spending bill with funding boost to IRS House panel advances spending bill with funding boost to IRS MORE (Texas), the top Republican on the Appropriations Committee.

While the legislation is unlikely to become law in its current form, it nonetheless gives Pelosi more leverage in spending talks with Senate Republicans, who have not passed any government funding bills for fiscal 2020.

Many of the provisions in the House bill are unlikely to make it through the Senate, which has lagged in producing its own spending measures. Senators say they are waiting until the House, Senate and White House agree on overall spending caps.

Pelosi hosted a meeting Wednesday afternoon to discuss raising the statutory caps, which could pave the way for the Senate to start passing its own appropriations bills. But no agreement was reached between congressional leaders and senior administration officials.

Without a deal, Congress and the White House may face a heavy fiscal lift in the fall. The deadline for raising the debt ceiling is expected to hit around that time, and missing it would lead to a U.S. debt default that would shock global financial markets.

Even if a deal is reached, the Senate will be well behind the House, which began consideration of a second, five-bill package covering $383 billion in spending on Wednesday afternoon. Democrats expect to complete passage of all 12 annual spending bills by the end of the month.

Wednesday's House-passed measure gives Pelosi an opportunity to argue that congressional Democrats are standing up to Trump at a time when dozens of caucus members are calling for initiating an impeachment inquiry against the president.

When asked about impeachment, Pelosi frequently pivots to talk about legislative accomplishments.

“I want to get back to our legislation, because that is what the American people elected us to do,” she said last week when the topic of impeachment came up.

Chris Mills Rodrigo contributed.

Updated at 5:37 p.m.