Republican-led House backs temporary spending bill to avert govt shutdown

Vastavam web: The Republican-led House narrowly passed a temporary spending bill to avert a government shutdown, doing the bare minimum in a sprint toward the holidays and punting disputes on immigration, health care and national security to next year.The vote was 231-188 with Democrats criticizing Republicans’ inability to complete the dozen spending bills for the current fiscal year and relying on a third stopgap bill since the year’s October 1 start.The wrap-up measure allows Republicans controlling Washington to savor their win on this week’s 1.5 trillion tax package even as they kick a full lineup of leftover work into the new year. Congress will return in January facing enormous challenges on immigration, the federal budget, health care and national security along with legislation to increase the government’s authority to borrow money.

The House then passed, by a bipartisan 251-169 tally, a 81 billion measure to deliver rebuilding aid to hurricane victims in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico and other parts of the Caribbean as well as fire-ravaged states. But the Senate was unlikely to go along as both Republicans and Democrats want changes.The stopgap legislation would keep the government from closing down at midnight Friday. It has traversed a tortured path, encountering resistance from the GOP’s most ardent allies of the military, as well as opposition from Democrats who demanded but were denied a vote on giving immigrants brought to the country as children and in the country illegally an opportunity to become citizens.”They embody the best in our nation: patriotism, hard work, perseverance,” House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi of California told the chamber’s Rules Committee on Thursday. “We should not leave them to celebrate the holidays in fear.”