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Trump Signs 2-Year Spending Pact

11 February 2018

After a brief overnight shutdown, a proposed spending bill was passed in the House and signed by President Trump early Friday morning.

The White House says President Donald Trump is "weighing his options" as he decides whether to release a classified memo, drafted by Democrats, that counters GOP allegations that the Federal Bureau of Investigation abused US government surveillance powers in its Russian Federation probe.

He begins the statement with, "This is no way to run a country".

Almost $300 billion in new spending included in the bill approved on Friday will mean the annual budget deficit will exceed $1 trillion in 2019, said the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, a private fiscal policy watchdog group. The bill would also provide long overdue disaster funding for Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico months after hurricanes devastated homes, infrastructure and coastlines there.

The Senate's deal still needs to pass in the House, but some lawmakers, like Pelosi may vote against it because it doesn't include an immigration deal. That bill also included a full-year of funding for defense spending.

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It also would increase the government's debt cap, preventing a first-ever default on U.S. obligations that looms in just a few weeks.

Voting in the House is now underway.

A carefully crafted, bipartisan stopgap funding and budget package was introduced with confidence earlier this week by Senate leaders, who predicted swift passage before the expiration at midnight on Thursday of current funding authority.

The bill was equally delayed in the House after Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., made an impassioned case to her colleagues this week to vote against a bipartisan measure negotiated by her Senate counterpart, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

However, Senate leaders from both the Republican and Democratic parties were discussing a two-year deal to lift spending caps on defence and domestic programmes, which suggests that they would probably not support the House-version spending bill.

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"If you're against president [Barack] Obama's deficits, but you're for the Republican deficits, isn't that the very definition of hypocrisy?" he boomed, adding that he wants his fellow lawmakers "to feel uncomfortable" over the impasse.

"There is probably a lot of blame to go around for the Republicans who are advocating for this debt", Paul said to CNN's Erin Burnett OutFront.

Senate leaders had celebrated the budget deal as a sign they had left behind some of their chronic dysfunction. Ryan hasn't scheduled House consideration, infuriating Democrats, but he said Friday, "We will focus on bringing that debate to this floor and finding a solution". "Her team was in on it", said top GOP vote counter Patrick McHenry, R-N.C.

Democrats want to extend the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, which lets the immigrants temporarily live and work in the USA but that Trump would end March 5.

Whether the lack of progress signaled the possibility of another federal government shutdown next week was unclear, but it anxious the Dreamers, young people who were brought illegally into the United States as children.

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Trump Signs 2-Year Spending Pact