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Congress Proposes Bill to Avoid Government Shutdown

    Congress Proposes Bill to Avoid Government Shutdown
    Last updated: 2 months ago
    Image credit: Bloomberg [via Washington Post]

    Facts

    • Top members of the US Congress have unveiled a short-term spending bill to avoid a partial government shutdown. The funding extension is likely to pass by Friday at midnight when current funds expire, but the process may come down to the wire. [1]
    • The bill would fund the government through Dec. 16, allowing negotiators time to agree on a spending package for the 2023 fiscal year. A vote to begin the debate process Tuesday is seen as a crucial referendum on Senator Joe Manchin’s (R-W.Va.) proposal on oil and gas permitting. [2]
    • The current bill includes funding to help support families struggling to heat their homes, water infrastructure projects in Jackson, Miss., funding for disaster relief from this year and last year, a transfer of funds from the Dept. of Defense to the State Dept. for Afghan resettlement, and aid for Ukraine. [2]
    • There has been GOP and progressive opposition to Manchin's permitting proposal, which would need 60 votes to advance. Democrats may attempt to push a stopgap bill without Manchin's provisions if the current bill falls short of the 60-vote threshold. [3]
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    Spin

    Pro-establishment narrative

    Government shutdowns are disruptive and hurt the very people lawmakers are working to protect. Neither party wants a shutdown - especially ahead of the November elections - and this short-term spending bill will ultimately show how Congress will come to a solution.

    Establishment-critical narrative

    As much as lawmakers hope to avoid a government shutdown, it might be unavoidable. Many GOP lawmakers refuse to vote for Manchin's proposals, and progressives are joining an alliance of what Manchin calls "strange bedfellows." There's no guarantee that the institution of Congress will keep the federal government funded.

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