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US Congress unveils stopgap bill to avoid shutdown, aid Ukraine

Richard Cowan

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate will hold an initial vote on Tuesday on a stopgap spending measure to give federal agencies the The weekend continued as Congress continued to negotiate bills to fund the government in the next fiscal year.

President Joe Biden’s Democrats control both chambers of Congress and are expected to avoid an embarrassing partial government shutdown in the midterm elections six weeks before Nov. 8, when control of Congress is threatened .

The bill would extend the government’s overall funding until December 16, requiring 12 House Appropriations Committee Chair Rosa DeLauro said in a statement that the $3 billion in new funding would help Ukraine prevent a Russian aggression.

This includes new military and financial aid. In addition, the measure authorizes Biden to directly withdraw up to $3.7 billion for the transfer of surplus weapons from U.S. stockpiles to Ukraine.

In early September, Biden requested $700 million in military and economic aid.

In the wake of reports that Russian troops are threatening the safety of Ukrainian nuclear power plants and Russian President Vladimir Putin hinting that he may use a summary of the bill, which would fund 35 million “to prepare for and respond to a potential nuclear and radiological incident in Ukraine”.

Congress failed in 12 the past 43 years to take this last minute interim spending bill Approval of full-year appropriations in time for the federal fiscal year that begins Oct. 1, according to a government study.

Tuesday night’s procedural vote in the Senate is aimed at accelerating action after Democrats and Republicans complete the legislation.

Manchin’s licensing bill is a hurdle

The outcome of the first ballot is unclear as Democratic Senator Joe Manchin It has fought over an additional clause, which has urged the inclusion of an unrelated measure to speed up the government’s permitting process for energy projects.

The proposed legislation includes provisions to allow reforms and directs 250 millions of dollars from the recently passed Inflation Reduction Act to “improve and expedite the designation of Project Review”.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell urged his fellow Republicans to vote against the temporary appropriations bill because of the Manchin Clause, Politico reported. An aide to McConnell did not respond to a request for comment.

Some Democrats and environmentalists also object, fearing that the impact of climate change on carbon emissions will trigger more development of fossil fuel projects is accelerating.

While Republicans typically favor accelerated government scrutiny of fossil fuel programs, they have been angry with Manchin since helping Democrats pass a bill this summer to tackle climate change and reduce health care costs .

“It’s a positive movement. I hope my friends see it that way,” Manchin said in an interview with CNN, referring to his licensing reform being included in interim funding bill.

But Sen. Richard Shelby, a senior Republican on the Senate Appropriations Committee, said in a statement: “If Democrats insist on including allowing reform, I will oppose” moving forward with the temporary appropriations bill. “

spending bill still on track to pass

Senate and House leaders expected to quickly pass spending by midnight Friday deadline, even if procedural vote on Tuesday fails Act.

That’s when government agencies run out of money when they start a new fiscal year on Saturday.

Also includes charges from drug and medical device companies A five-year update to the FDA’s user fees to review their products and determine if they are safe and effective, a summary of the bill shows.

The law authorizing the fee is set to expire Friday .

New funding for coronavirus aid and monkeypox vaccine sought by Democrats was unsuccessful in legislation. DeLauro says she will continue to push for such funding.

As cold winter weather sweeps the U.S., the legislation provides an additional $1 billion for low-income households Energy Assistance Program “to help address the impact of inflation on the wallets of low-income households,” DeLauro said.

The last time Congress allowed funding to lapse was in December 2018 when Democrats were reluctant to pay for then-President Donald Trump’s US-Mexico border wall Pay the bill. After record 35 days of gridlock and a partial government shutdown, Trump found a way to circumvent Congress to a degree, but the wall was never finished.



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