Home » U.S. Senate Advances Short-term Spending Bill Ahead of Gov’t Shutdown

U.S. Senate Advances Short-term Spending Bill Ahead of Gov’t Shutdown

The U.S. Senate passed a short-term spending bill on Tuesday in hope of avoiding a government shutdown by Saturday midnight, yet with no guarantee it will be passed in the House.

In a rare demonstration of bipartisanship, the Democrats-led Senate voted the bill 77-19.

The bill includes 6.1 billion U.S. dollars of aid for Ukraine and roughly 6 billion dollars for domestic disaster relief.

It is expected to fund the government until Nov. 17 at the same funding levels as before, contrary to the GOP’s demand for a spending cut.

The vote put the Senate on a path to pass a continuing resolution later this week, which would be sent to the House if passed and could potentially avert a federal government shutdown by Oct. 1.

Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer called the bill “a bridge away from extremism and towards cooperation” to buy negotiators more time to reach an agreement on a longer-term funding bill on social media.

The move came after Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy failed to garner enough support for a short-term spending bill among House Republicans.

McCarthy previously put forward a stopgap bill that would cut the budgets of most federal agencies by about 8 percent and tighten immigration restrictions. But the House went into a stalemate after the bill met opposition from hardline Republicans who refused any further aid to Ukraine.

Although McCarthy has been insisting a shutdown is the worst scenario, he has no guarantee to mediate a compromise in the House.

McCarthy said earlier Tuesday that funding for Ukraine should not be included in a short-term spending package, and instead should be a standalone bill. He also called on Tuesday for a meeting with President Joe Biden.

U.S. media reported McCarthy told his leadership team Tuesday night that he plans to amend the Senate’s stopgap spending bill to include a House GOP border security package.