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Senate near two-year budget deal with higher defense spending

09 February 2018

But Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., objected to moving toward passing the plan. He repeatedly objected to efforts by senators to quickly move to a vote on the agreement.

Defense: Increase defense spending over current law by $80 billion in fiscal 2018 and $85 billion in fiscal 2019, pleasing defense hawks who have called for increased funding and stability in the military budget. The House passed a separate short-term spending bill on Tuesday.

Votes from Democrats - possibly as many as 100 - would be needed to get the budget agreement passed in the House, because many Republicans are balking at the cost. The deal is expected to pass through the Senate despite vocal opposition from several Democrats due to the separation of the deal from the immigration debate.

The deal had been expected to sail through the Senate, and the House had planned to vote on it later Thursday, until Paul took his stand.

Senate leaders reached a long-term budget deal to fund the government on Wednesday - despite President Trump's desires for a government shutdown and a showdown on immigration.

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"I want people to feel uncomfortable", Paul said.

The bill removes automatic spending cuts - known as sequestration caps - for both defense and nondefense programs. It is also only partially offset, and most of those offsets occur years from now, doubling down on the irresponsible mentality in Congress of spend-now-pay-later.

Despite the rare show of bipartisanship in the upper chamber, the agreement faces skepticism and resistance from both sides of the aisle in the House. But the House is another matter.

On Thursday, Ryan ventured a bit further, suggesting the ultimate bill would be bipartisan. "It is going to need bipartisan support".

"I hope I hear Nancy Pelosi... as vigorously opposing Democrats colluding with Republicans to deport Dreamers", he said, adding that it is imperative for Democrats like Pelosi to maintain their "political principles". Ryan could potentially have to rely on half of the House Democrats voting for the plan in order for it to pass.

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McConnell reiterated his promise to allow an open debate on immigration legislation "that will be fair to all sides". Ryan committed Thursday to bring up an immigration bill that Trump would support.

"My commitment to working together on an immigration measure that we can make law is a honest commitment".

President Trump tweeted his thumbs-up for a bipartisan budget deal hatched by Senate leaders Wednesday, signaling to House conservatives they should get behind the compromise.

"I'm heartened that Congress recognizes the sobering effect of budgetary uncertainty on America's military and on the men and women who provide for our nation's defense", Mattis said during the White House briefing. "It ends the risky sequester and gives Secretary Mattis what he needs to keep America Great", he added. before warning, "Republicans and Democrats must support our troops and support this Bill!" But when pressed by reporters on whether she will whip her Democratic caucus to vote against the bill, which would imperil its passage, she demurred, saying only that she has told them she personally will vote no even though she views it as "a good bill".

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Senate near two-year budget deal with higher defense spending