Tags: senate | funding | bills | continuing resolution | government shutdown

Senate Prepares for Showdown Over Funding Bills

Image: Senate Prepares for Showdown Over Funding Bills

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 02 Sep 2016 11:44 AM

In a major bid to counter a deadlock over funding bills that threaten to cause a government shutdown, lawmakers are reportedly returning to Washington, according to the Hill.

Republican leaders, who want to avoid the standoff at all costs, will put their best foot forward.

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid has made it clear that the possibility of passing a stopgap funding bill will not stretch into next year.

"Everyone should be alerted today that we're not going to be doing a long-term CR," Reid said on Thursday, referring to a short-term continuing resolution to fund the government beyond this month.

"The Senate is being run into the ground and unless it changes course … we're headed straight for another government shutdown," he added.

According to Politico, it's not just Democrats who want a continuing resolution that doesn't push spending questions into next year.

"I think we owe it to the next president, I don't care who it is, to get our work done [this year]," said Rep. Tom Cole, a senior member on the House Appropriations Committee.

Among other issues, the senators are likely to lock horns over Zika funding. With their majority on the line, Republican candidates will be able to argue that Democrats are playing politics with Zika and military funding.

It may be recalled in June, the session did not go off smoothly as Democrats blocked a GOP-authored bill that they said would unfairly curb money from Planned Parenthood.
According to the report, Democrats plan to block a bill funding the Department of Defense, which is on the Senate schedule for next week.

Senate Democratic leaders don't want to let Republicans pass the defense bill at a new funding level.

"We don't want a defense bill to pass by itself but leave other bills that have security funding for the Department of Homeland Security, FBI and the CIA on autopilot," a senior Democratic aide was quoted as saying.

Apart from votes on Zika funding and the Department of Defense, Senate Majroity Leader Mitch McConnell has given little indication of what else would be topics of contention this fall. The Zika money is attached to a conference report for legislation funding military construction and the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The report further clarifies other possible Acts for discussion, namely the Water Resources Development Act and the Energy Policy Modernization Act, which was passed in April to renewable energy and energy efficiency.

Senate Republicans are also likely to discuss the schedule and their top legislative priorities when they reconvene next week.

The Senate is scheduled to be in session through the first week of October.

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In a major bid to counter a deadlock over funding bills that threaten to cause a government shutdown, lawmakers are reportedly returning to Washington, according to the Hill.
senate, funding, bills, continuing resolution, government shutdown
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2016-44-02
Friday, 02 Sep 2016 11:44 AM
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