The bill did finally pass the House of Represenatives last night with votes from Democrats to carry it over the line. However, the next task will be the US Senate where Senator Elizabeth Warren, a potential 2016 presidential candidate, has threatened to hold up the bill over certain provisions regarding banking regulation.
Report from the Associated Press:
Republicans have muscled a $1.1 trillion bill financing government agencies through the House after President Barack Obama phoned Democratic lawmakers and urged them to back the measure.
The House approved the measure late Thursday by 219-206.
The compromise bill keeps agencies funded through next September.
Many conservatives opposed it because it did not block Obama’s recent executive actions on immigration. A large majority of House Democrats opposed it because of provisions easing some restrictions on banks and allowing higher political contributions by big donors.
Obama backed the bill and called wavering Democratic lawmakers to persuade them to help it pass.
The bill must now be approved by the Democratic-run Senate.
Some numbers on who defected in the House:
In the end, 67 Republicans defected, but 57 Democrats voted for it.
Many conservatives opposed the bill because it does not attack Obama’s immigration executive actions, while liberal Democrats were angry over provisions dealing with campaign spending and financial regulation.
Onward to the Senate where the bill still has yet to win approval from some Democrats lining up behind Elizabeth Warren in opposition. Report from Fox News:
“Who does Congress work for?” Warren said in a speech on the Senate floor Wednesday afternoon. “Does it work for the millionaires, the billionaires, the giant companies with their armies of lobbyists and lawyers, or does it work for all the people?”Warren’s call went further than House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who said Wednesday that she is “deeply troubled” by the banking measure. The Democratic discontent with the measure could make passing the bill more difficult, as House Speaker John Boehner is not expected to have enough votes on his own.
Warren, a popular figure on the left, told Democrats to withhold their support for the funding bill until the Wall Street provisions are removed. Warren, a fierce opponent of Wall Street, is a populist who has supported reforming banks for years.
Clearly the 2016 presidential games have already begun and Warren is taking advantage of this opportunity to garner some press coverage as a champion for progressives. I’m betting the bill will eventually pass the Senate as well and the President has indicated he’ll sign it. Both parties enjoy dropping a cool trillion to fund the government.
This story will be ongoing for several days as debate in the Senate will likely spill into next week.