Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Congress Sends Obama Bill to End Shutdown

At WaPo:

Sixteen days after a federal shutdown began and one day before the United States would have exhausted its ability to borrow money, Congress approved a bill to reopen the government and raise the debt ceiling until Feb. 7. President Obama has promised to sign the legislation immediately, meaning hundreds of thousands of federal workers will be back at work Thursday.

“Now that the bill has passed the United States Senate and the House of Representatives, the President plans to sign it tonight and employees should expect to return to work in the morning,” Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, said in a statement late Wednesday night. Burwell directed employees to check news outlets and OPM’s Web site for further updates.

By a vote of 81 to 18, the Senate sent the 35-page bill to the House of Representatives, where it was approved 285-144 just a little over two hours later. All 198 Democrats present in the House voted yes, and 87 Republicans voted yes as well. All 144 no votes were Republicans.

“We fought the good fight; we just didn’t win,” House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) said in an interview with conservative radio host Bill Cunningham.

At the White House, Obama hailed the Senate’s deal. “Once this agreement arrives on my desk I will sign it immediately and we will begin reopening the government immediately, and we can begin to lift this cloud of uncertainty and unease from our businesses and the and the American people.”

Obama said he hopes to move forward on other domestic priorities, including immigration reform and the farm bill. “We could get all these things done if everybody comes together in a spirit of ‘how can we move this country forward’ and put the last three weeks behind us.”
More at that top link.