Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Congressional Leadership Negotiates on Government Funding



Leadership in both parties are trying to reach a bipartisan agreement in order to keep the government funded. Members of Congress will need to send a bill to the President’s desk by Friday to avert a government shutdown.

It looked as if Republicans might have to act against the administration in order to come to an agreement that would pass the Senate. Earlier in the week, President Trump called for funding for a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico—a provision that would alienate Democrats—though has since backed off that demand. Any bill would need Democratic help to pass the Senate, as 60 votes are needed to avoid a filibuster.

Democrats have sticking points of their own, with some in Leadership insisting that subsidies relating to the 2010 health care law be included in the agreement. The funding bill could include a provision to provide permanent Obamacare subsidies to help cover costs for low-income Americans and stabilize insurance markets. President Trump has threatened to pull these subsidies to force Democrats to negotiate on health care reform, therefore, some in Leadership want to take Congressional action to prevent such a scenario. If such a provision is not included, Democrats will have to choose to either support a less-than-desirable package or risk a government shutdown.


Congress may pass a short term funding bill, or “continuing resolution,” to keep the government funded at current levels for a few weeks will negotiations on larger sticking points continue.

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