Espreso. Global

US government avoids shutdown: Biden signs temporary budget bill

1 October, 2023 Sunday

An hour before the October 1 deadline, US President Joe Biden signed a bill to temporarily fund the government until November 17, approved the day before by the US Senate and House of Representatives

The White House reported the information.

"On Saturday, September 30, 2023, the President signed into law: H.R. 5860, which provides fiscal year appropriations to Federal agencies through November 17, 2023, for continuing projects of the Federal Government and extends several expiring authorities," it said.

Before signing the bill, Biden issued a statement saying that the agreement did not include new funding to continue supporting Ukraine.

"We cannot under any circumstances allow American support for Ukraine to be interrupted. I fully expect the Speaker will keep his commitment to the people of Ukraine and secure passage of the support needed to help Ukraine at this critical moment," the US President said.

The US Senate follows Congress in approving a draft temporary government funding bill

Late in the evening of September 30, 88 senators voted in favor of the bill, with 9 Republican senators opposed:  Marsha Blackburn and Bill Hagerty, Mike Braun, Ted Cruz, Roger Marshall, Mike Lee, Rand Paul, and Eric Schmitt.

"It's been a day full of twists and turns. The American people can breathe a sigh of relief: there will be no government shutdown," said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.

The legislation keeps government funding at current levels through November 17 and authorizes additional funds for disaster relief, giving Congress more time to reach a full-year funding agreement.

"That will still be a towering challenge ahead of the new November deadline, but it avoids for now a shutdown that would have put pay for millions of Americans in jeopardy," the statement said.

The agreement excludes aid to Ukraine, a provision of the bipartisan Senate bill that Speaker Kevin McCarthy rejected, saying it should be considered separately at a time to be determined.

The day before, the US House of Representatives approved a 45-day budget to fund government agencies, which does not include a provision for Ukraine, and will be introduced in a separate bill.

The bill will allow the government to work for another 45 days and avoid a shutdown. At that time, 335 representatives voted in favor against 91.

As Babel noted, the Senate could not have adopted such wording, as there is much more support for Ukraine there.

What is a "shutdown" and why voting for the budget resolution is also important for Ukraine

A government shutdown occurs when part of the US government ceases to function because a new budget has not been passed, which includes funding for government agencies. It typically happens when the budget for the current fiscal period expires, in this case on September 30, and the shutdown would commence on October 1. However, Congress has the option to approve a temporary extension of the budget period.

To avoid a shutdown, a budget resolution must be passed. If Congress does not pass a budget resolution for the upcoming fiscal year by September 30, it may lead to a shutdown. Alternatively, the adoption of a budget resolution allows for the financing of government expenditures until lawmakers pass a full budget law.

Earlier, Matthew Miller, the Spokesperson for the US Department of State, said that the shutdown could affect the speed of arms deliveries to US partners.

At the same time, he said, a bipartisan majority in the US Congress supports continued assistance to Ukraine.

On September 30, US House of Representatives Speaker Kevin McCarthy said that money for Ukraine should be excluded from the supplemental spending bill to prevent a "shutdown.”

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