House backs $1.2T spending bill with more money for military

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (September 14, 2017) — The Republican-led House on Thursday passed a sweeping $1.2 trillion spending bill that provides billions more dollars for the military while sparing medical research and popular community development programs from deep cuts sought by President Donald Trump.

The vote was 211-198 for the massive measure that wrapped the 12 annual spending bills into one in advance of the end of the budget year on Sept. 30. Even though the Senate still must act, the government will keep operating through Dec. 8, thanks to legislation Congress passed last week and sent to Trump.

House members spent the past two weeks debating the measure's $500 billion for domestic agencies. GOP leaders then merged that domestic spending package with an earlier House measure that would give record budget increases to the Pentagon and provide a $1.6 billion down payment for Trump's wall along the U.S.-Mexico border that he repeatedly has insisted Mexico would finance.

"It does everything from strengthening our national defense and veterans' programs to cracking down on illegal immigration to protecting life to cutting abusive Washington agencies like the IRS and the EPA," said the No. 2 House Republican, Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California.

At issue are the spending bills passed by Congress each year to fund day-to-day operations of federal agencies. Trump, following the lead of budget director Mick Mulvaney, a former tea party congressman, pushed for a sweeping increase for the Pentagon and commensurate cuts of more than $50 billion from domestic agencies and foreign aid.

House Republicans have responded by adding even more spending on defense, but have significantly scaled back Trump's cuts to domestic programs like community development grants and medical research.

Trump has taken a low-profile on budget issues other than the wall, however, and his administration has done little to fight for his spending cuts since they were unveiled.

The House measure adds almost $9 billion to Trump's funding request for medical research at the National Institutes of Health, rather than accepting sharp cuts recommended by Trump. It keeps as-is a $269 million subsidy for money-losing routes to rural airports that Trump had targeted. And it gives modest increases to GOP favorites such as law enforcement agencies and NASA.

But House Republicans voted to slash government accounts on studying climate change, eliminate Title X family planning funds, and sharply cut foreign aid accounts, though not as drastically as Trump proposed. A transportation grant program started by former President Barack Obama would be eliminated, as would hiring grants for local police departments.

The limits imposed by a budget agreement threaten the measure's sweeping Pentagon increases, which total about $60 billion above current levels and almost $30 billion higher than Trump's budget. That would evaporate next year unless there's a bipartisan agreement to raise them. A two-year agreement that eased those spending limits expires in September.

The legislation is laced with conservative provisions reversing Obama-era regulations, blocking implementation of the Affordable Care Act and defunding Planned Parenthood. But most such measures will be dropped — as in previous years — during subsequent negotiations with Democrats.

Passage of the legislation marks the first time since 2009 that the House has backed all of the appropriations bills in one fashion or the other by the end of the budget year. The progress was possible in part because House GOP leaders maneuvered to keep Democrats from forcing controversial votes on issues such as immigration.

Consider Supporting Us?

The staff at Onenewsnow.com strives daily to bring you news from a biblical perspective. If you benefit from this platform and want others to know about it please consider a generous gift today.

MAKE A DONATION

Comments

We moderate all reader comments, usually within 24 hours of posting (longer on weekends). Please limit your comment to 300 words or less and ensure it addresses the article - NOT another reader's comments. Comments that contain a link (URL), an inordinate number of words in ALL CAPS, rude remarks directed at other readers, or profanity/vulgarity will not be approved. More details

SIGN UP FOR OUR DAILY NEWSBRIEF

SUBSCRIBE

VOTE IN OUR POLL

Will a 'two-state solution' help Israel's security?

CAST YOUR VOTE

GET PUSH NOTIFICATIONS

SUBSCRIBE

LATEST AP HEADLINES

Kim Jong Un: 'Deranged' Trump will 'pay dearly' for threat
Latest: Hurricane Maria approaching Turks and Caicos
Aaron Hernandez had severe CTE; daughter sues NFL, Pats
Powerless: Puerto Rico faces weeks without electricity
Trump's new executive order targets funding for North Korea
Search for survivors continues in aftermath of deadly Mexico quake
A stunned Puerto Rico seeks to rebuild after Hurricane Maria

LATEST FROM THE WEB

NKorea could test hydrogen bomb in Pacific, top diplomat says
Ex-Secret Service rebukes Dems for hypocrisy over surveillance
Here’s where a Michigan teacher wasted $30k in stolen school funds
Democrats caught inciting anti-police riots in St. Louis
Cops' 'knock and shoot' leaves innocent man dead

CARTOON OF THE DAY

Cartoon of the Day

REASON & COMPANY

NEXT STORY
Kim Jong Un: 'Deranged' Trump will 'pay dearly' for threat

SEOUL, South Korea (September 21, 2017) — North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, in an extraordinary and direct rebuke, called President Donald Trump “deranged” and said he will “pay dearly” for his threats, a possible indication of more powerful weapons tests on the horizon.