The media has been talking about the possibility of a government shutdown ever since mid-March, when President Trump revealed his $1.15 trillion budget proposal that included more funding for defense and less funding for just about everyone else.
We have a Republican President and a GOP-dominated Congress. We were never in danger of a shutdown. Last Friday, just before President Trump’s 100th day in office, Congress passed a stopgap funding bill to prevent a shutdown.
The funding bill lasts until May 5th, giving lawmakers a little more time to negotiate an omnibus bill that includes funding until September 30th, the end of the fiscal year.
“The legislation…will carry us through next week so that a bipartisan final agreement can be reached and so that members will have time to review the legislation before we take it up,” said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).
The stopgap bill cleared the House with a vote of 382-30. The Senate passed it by voice vote shortly thereafter.
Democrats seemed willing to back the measure in order to buy more time.
“We’re willing to extend things for a little bit more time in hopes that the same kind of progress can continue to be made,” said Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY).
Schumer and others stayed up past 1:00am negotiating. “Not all the poison pill riders have been eliminated…we still have a little bit of a ways to go.”
Republicans know they will need some Democratic support to pass the bill. There are 52 Republicans in the Senate, and the larger spending bill will need 60 votes.
Many of the major disputes were resolved last week, but lawmakers continue to argue over issues like healthcare for miners and helping address Puerto Rico’s Medicaid crisis.
President Trump has already backed off on his demand that border wall funding be included in the bill, and the White House has assured the Dems that they will continue making ACA cost-sharing reduction payments to insurers to help subsidize low-income healthcare plans.
Editor’s note: There was never really a danger of government shut down here. The possibility was just hype from the imagination of the liberal media.