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Congress passes $1.5 trillion bill to fund government

Andrew Solender

The Senate on Thursday passed a $1.5 trillion budget bill to fund the government through the end of September.

Why it matters: The bill includes an emergency funding requested by the White House to provide humanitarian and security assistance to Ukraine amid Russia’s brutal invasion.

  • The vote represents a significant breakthrough after Congress had to pass three stopgap funding measures to keep the government open the last five months.
  • The House passed the budget bill on Wednesday before recessing for Democrats’ annual retreat.

Driving the news: The Senate voted 68-31 to pass the bill.

The details: The budget bill contains $13.6 billion around Ukraine, split between humanitarian and security assistance.

  • Another $15.6 billion supplemental to combat Covid-19 was stripped from the bill after some House Democrats protested offsetting about half of it with unallocated state and local funds meant for their districts.
  • That uproar caused an hours-long delay in voting which upended the first day of the Democratic retreat.
  • House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said the House will consider that as a standalone bill next week.

What’s next: The bill now heads to President Biden, who is expected to sign it before the government is set to run out of money on Friday.


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