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Dem sequester relief budget measure fails

An amendment offered Thursday to the GOP budget by former Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty MurrayPatricia (Patty) Lynn MurrayHawley pens op-ed to defend decision to object to electoral votes amid pushback Demolition at the Labor Department, too Hawley, Cruz face rising anger, possible censure MORE (D-Wash.) to relieve sequestration for the next two years failed. 

Murray wanted the proposal to be added to the Senate Republican spending plan released a day earlier. 

The amendment would relieve sequestration for fiscal years 2016 and 2017 by extending the agreement she reached with former House Budget Committee Chairman Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanRevising the pardon power — let the Speaker and Congress have voices Paul Ryan will attend Biden's inauguration COVID-19 relief bill: A promising first act for immigration reform MORE (R-Wis.) in December 2013, which eased the spending caps for two years. 

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Murray said her amendment would “replace senseless automatic cuts with more responsible savings,” by closing tax loopholes.

If Congress doesn’t change a 2011 law that put the spending ceilings in place, sequestration will return in October. 

“If sequestration is allowed…the cuts will be devastating across-the-board and I think most members know that,” Murray said. 

Chairman Mike EnziMichael (Mike) Bradley EnziSenate swears-in six new lawmakers as 117th Congress convenes With Senate at stake, Georgia is on all our minds Wyoming mask mandate backed by GOP lawmakers goes into effect MORE (R-Wyo.) pointed out his blueprint already contains a deficit-neutral reserve fund that is meant to address sequestration caps later in the year. 

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGraham pushes Schumer for vote to dismiss impeachment article Impeachment trial tests Trump's grip on Senate GOP An attack on America that's divided Congress — and a nation MORE (R-S.C.), a member of the Budget panel, has said he's been discussing a "mini Simpson-Bowles" plan with Democrats that could ease the spending caps. To offset the spending increases, he has said he would be willing to close tax loopholes in exchange for small entitlement program changes. 

Enzi's plan, which is non-binding, sticks to sequester caps. In order to change the 2011 law, lawmakers would have to work on a Ryan-Murray-type deal that would have to go to the president's desk.