Just before the upcoming budget shutdown, the US House of Representatives approved a new interim budget. However, the draft does not include billions in aid to Ukraine and Israel. Republicans were divided.
The feared stagnation of government business in the United States appears to have been averted. Members of the US House of Representatives approved the interim budget bill with the required two-thirds majority. Without approval, employees in some areas of public administration, among others, would not have received their salaries from Saturday.
The Senate, the other chamber of the US Congress, must now approve the proposal. It is considered a formality because Democrats hold the majority in the Senate and have already spoken favorably of the draft. Republican leadership there has already approved.
Bidens Aid in crores Excluded
The vote is expected to take place later this week. After that, President Joe Biden still has to sign the bill. However, it excludes billions in support that Biden has requested for Israel and Ukraine, as well as new money for US border security with Mexico. These points should be decided separately later, just like regular budgeting for the long term. 336 members of the House of Representatives voted for the draft, while 95 parliamentarians rejected it.
The bill would fund about one-fifth of the money for government operations and federal agencies through Jan. 19, including money for the military and veterans, agriculture and transportation. According to the Washington Post, the other four-fifths — the State Department, Commerce, Labor and Health — will be funded through Feb. 2.
More than 90 Republicans opposed it
Newly elected House Republican Majority Leader Mike Johnson introduced the bill last week. However, 93 of his party colleagues rejected the proposal because they wanted to block the increase in certain expenditure items. Only 127 Republicans voted for it. The bill passed with only 209 Democrats voting, with two Democrats voting against it.
The current interim budget, passed by the US Congress in early October, expires on Saturday. Until then, a solution should be found to avoid the state of bankruptcy of the government administration. The political battle repeats itself every year — usually Congress passes a midterm budget, then fights again months later over funding government operations.
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