WEIS Radio | Local and regional news, sports and weather »The Chamber votes to approve the bill aimed at avoiding the closure of the government

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(WASHINGTON) – The House voted in party favor to pass a short-term funding bill to avoid a government shutdown next week.

The final vote was 220-211.

The bill would fund the government until December 3 and also includes billions of dollars in emergency disaster relief and aid to Afghan evacuees. It also suspends the debt ceiling until December 2022.

Senate Republicans are expected to block the measure later this week because they do not want to vote on increasing the debt ceiling – meaning a shutdown could still take place if funding runs out after midnight on September 30.

Democrats need 10 Republican Senators to vote with them, and right now the votes aren’t there. The way forward to avoid a shutdown is unclear at this time.

Senate Republicans have said they oppose the suspension of the debt ceiling because of the additional spending measures Democrats are developing, even though it would pay for previous spending. But Senate Democrats have worked with Republicans under the Trump administration to raise the debt ceiling on several occasions and have said it is a bipartisan responsibility.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said if Congress does not act to raise the debt ceiling, the United States could default on its debt in October, potentially triggering an “economic catastrophe.”

Republicans, led by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, have said for weeks that they will oppose any measure raising the debt ceiling, insisting Democrats can do it on their own given their control over the three branches of government.

“Since the Democrats have decided to go it alone, they will not get help from Republicans in the Senate to raise the debt ceiling. I have been explaining this clearly and consistently for over two months, ”McConnell said Monday in the Senate.

But Democrats are moving forward and remain optimistic about the bill’s prospects, knowing full well the challenge they face in rallying Republicans.

“We hope the Republicans in the Senate will do the right thing as well and stop playing politics around the debt limit,” House Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries said at a conference press release Tuesday.

Jeffries said at least a handful of Republicans have publicly said they will eventually vote for the bill. Democrats need at least 10 Republicans in the Senate to support the bill.

“Three times – during the former president’s administration – three times House Democrats have cooperated to raise the debt ceiling,” Jeffries said.

“Now all of a sudden they want to block the American people and the American economy and our faith and our credit, because they’re playing politics?” Jeffries told Republicans in the Senate.

“Senate Republicans should hear their friends at big banks and big business explain how catastrophic a default on our debt would be for industry, commerce, the economy and, most importantly, the American people,” he said. added Jeffries.

Without the support of the GOP, it is unclear how Democrats plan to tackle the issue of raising or suspending the debt limit on their own.

“Limiting the debt is a shared responsibility, and I urge Congress to come together, with that in mind, on a bipartisan basis as it has done in the past to protect the full faith and credit of the United States. “wrote House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. a letter to members this weekend.

The short-term funding bill unveiled on Tuesday extends funding until Dec. 3 for all vital federal agencies, including health, housing, education and public safety programs.

“It is essential that Congress passes this legislation swiftly to support essential education, health, housing and public safety programs and to provide emergency assistance to disaster survivors and Afghan evacuees,” said the president. of House Appropriations, Rosa DeLauro, in a statement Tuesday.

The bill also includes $ 28.6 billion in emergency disaster assistance to deal with recent natural disasters, including multiple hurricanes and wildfires, severe droughts and winter storms in 2021 and previous years.

An additional $ 6.3 billion would support Afghan evacuees, including funding to temporarily house evacuees at U.S. facilities and in foreign countries, provide necessary security checks, and ultimately relocate eligible evacuees to the United States. The legislation also provides funding to provide humanitarian assistance to Afghan refugees in neighboring countries.

The legislation suspends the debt ceiling until December 2022.

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