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President Trump signs spending bill, preventing shutdown


President Trump signs spending bill, preventing shutdown

News Desk

President Donald Trump signed a $854 billion spending package that will avert a shutdown by keeping the federal government open into the new fiscal year that begins Monday.

The measure fully funds most parts of the federal government through fiscal year 2019, pushing off a deadline for a partial shutdown — and showdown over funding for Trump’s proposed border wall — until early December.

“The signing of this legislation marks a drastic turnaround in the way we have funded the government in recent years,” said Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) in a statement announcing the signing. “As of today, 75 percent of the government is funded – on time and through an open, bipartisan process.”

The signing ceremony, which was scheduled for noon on Friday, was closed to the press. The White House has yet put out a statement on the signing, though other congressional Republicans confirmed that the measure was signed into law.

The package fully funds defense programs, a top Republican priority, as well as domestic programs through the departments of Labor, Health and Human Services and Education, fulfilling a top Democratic priority.

Combined with an earlier measure, Trump has signed into law almost $1 trillion in spending for 2019, about three-fourths of the total under a bipartisan agreement. Friday marks the first time since 1996 that the government has succeeded in getting five of the 12 annual spending bills signed into law before the new fiscal year begins.

Trump last week signed a package funding the legislative branch, energy and water, and military construction and veterans affairs.

Friday’s measure included a continuing resolution, or funding extension, for the seven bills that Congress has yet to agree on. Among them is the Department of Homeland Security bill, which contains funding for Trump’s proposed border wall.

The Senate’s version of that measure includes $1.6 billion for pedestrian fencing, while the House version would provide $5 billion.

Trump has threatened to veto spending bills if the wall is not funded to his satisfaction. But at the behest of GOP congressional leadership, he ultimately chose to delay that fight until after the Nov. 6 midterm elections.

Still, that didn’t stop the president from venting his frustration. Trump last week tweeted that the latest spending measure was “ridiculous,” and he urged Republicans to “get tough” on border security.

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