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Biden signs stopgap bill to extend funding deadline

President Biden signed a government funding bill to punt the threat of a shutdown later into the month and buy lawmakers time to hash out spending deals.

The president signed a stopgap bill that maintains funding for the departments of Agriculture, Interior, Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, Veterans Affairs, Energy, Justice, Commerce, Energy and other offices through March 8.

“This bipartisan agreement prevents a damaging shutdown and allows more time for Congress to work toward full-year funding bills. That’s good news for the American people. But I want to be clear: this is a short-term fix — not a long-term solution,” Biden said in a statement.

“In the days ahead, Congress must do its job and pass full-year funding bills that deliver for the American people,” he continued. “And House Republicans must act on the bipartisan National Security Supplemental, which already passed the Senate with overwhelming bipartisan support and would pass the House if it was brought to a vote.”

The national security bill includes millions of dollars for Ukraine in its war against Russia, as well as funding for Israel and Indo-Pacific allies.

Senators voted 77-13 on Thursday to approve the government funding measure just hours after the House voted overwhelmingly to pass the bill 320-99.

Lawmakers will have until March 22 to wrap up the fiscal 2024 funding for the Pentagon, the legislative branch and foreign operations, as well as the departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, State, and Homeland Security.

While lawmakers say they have a deal on the six appropriations bills due next week, disagreements remain on the other half-dozen measures, which include more controversial pieces of legislation funding agencies like the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security.

The eventual funding deals must pass the Democratic-controlled Senate and the GOP-controlled House, where some conservative members have demanded controversial policy additions to funding bills.

Source: The Hill

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