House Democrats face choice over budget deal

Donald Trump Paul Ryan

Donald Trump Paul Ryan

The House of Representatives voted early Friday to pass a $400 billion budget deal, a move that reopens the federal government after it was partially shut down for the second time in less than a month.

Citing national security concerns, the White House on Friday formally notified the House intelligence committee that President Donald Trump is "unable" to declassify a memo drafted by Democrats that counters GOP allegations about abuse of government surveillance powers in the FBI's Russian Federation probe.

He begins the statement with, "This is no way to run a country". Annually, the bill would raise defense spending by about $80 billion in fiscal year 2018, and about $85 billion in fiscal year 2019.

Exact spending would be left to the appropriations committees but included in the funding is $10 billion to invest in infrastructure, $2.9 billion for child care and $3 billion to combat opioid and substance abuse, CNN reported. Rand Paul (R-KY), who single-handedly blocked action in the Senate before a midnight funding deadline, as he criticized fellow Republicans for backing a two-year budget deal which features nearly $300 billion in spending increases in 2018 and 2019.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday he was optimistic they would soon be able to reach an agreement.

Most Democrats opposed the measure, following the lead of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., who tried and failed to use the moment to secure a promise for a separate vote on immigration. The budget bill "also means JOBS, JOBS, JOBS!", the president tweeted. However, it only funds the government through March 23.

President Trump said he agreed to domestic spending increases that he called a "waste" in order to get increased military spending and end a government shutdown that was over before it started.

Voting in the House is now underway. "I didn't come up here to be liked", Paul said.

Tension Mounts in West Bank after Jarrar's Assassination
Two Palestinians were killed during earlier raids that Israeli security services said were launched to find Shevach's killers. His declaration overturned decades of U.S. policy that its status should be decided in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.

The House vote followed earlier Senate approval of the budget pact that was initially delayed by a protest from Kentucky Sen.

As for the details of the budget agreement approved early Friday, it would funnel $165 billion in new money over the next two years to the Pentagon, along with $131 billion in new spending for domestic programs.

When asked if he supported the bill, Alabama Republican Mo Brooks said: "I'm not only a no".

Paul said during his marathon speech, which strained fellow senators' patience, that the two-year budget deal would "loot the Treasury".

"This is a bipartisan bill", the Wisconsin Republican said.

Since then, Trump has extended an immigration compromise with Democrats, going far beyond the "Dreamers" they want to protect and offering to provide a path to citizenship for 1.8 million illegal aliens.

Passing 245 to 182, the House bill would fund most of the agencies until 23rd March, while it is the nonstarter of the Senate due to the Democratic opposition. They say Nunes' memo is designed as a distraction from the probe, which is looking into whether Trump's campaign was in any way connected to the Russian interference. She said the president only wants wants a long term deal on immigration.

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