US Congress avoids shutdown with new budget extension

Washington, Nov 15 (EFE).- United States Congress on Wednesday approved a new budget extension that avoided a government shutdown.

The extension had already been approved Tuesday in the House of Representatives, which was its main obstacle, and was passed Wednesday with the vote around midnight in the Senate with 87 in favor and 11 against.

“I have good news for the American people: this Friday night, there will be no government shutdown,” said Senate Democratic Majority Leader Chuck Schumer just before the vote. “Because of bipartisan cooperation, we are keeping the government open.”

The bill will next go to President Joe Biden to be signed, a procedure that will possibly occur Thursday.

This is the second extension of the 2023 budget after that approved on Sep. 30 and which cost then-House speaker Kevin McCarthy his job.

That the Republican camp remains divided became evident during the Tuesday vote on the extension in the Lower House, as it received almost unanimous support from the Democrats but with 93 (of 220) conservatives against.

A government shutdown would have left nearly 2 million civil servants without pay over the Thanksgiving holiday.

The lack of funds would also have caused all kinds of problems for the Biden administration, from the closure of museums and national parks to the suspension of food health inspections and the interruption of scientific research programs.

The last shutdown occurred during the presidency of Republican Donald Trump and lasted for 35 days (Dec. 22, 2018-Jan. 29, 2019) – the longest in US history. EFE


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