The Deal’s Done: What’s in the Budget Agreement

The Deal’s Done: What’s in the Budget Agreement

by Jessica Schieder, 10/30/2015

Early this morning, the Senate passed a two-year budget deal, that President Obama is expected to sign soon.  It would:

  • Avoid a government shutdown this December
  • Partially alleviate across the board cuts for two years, and
  • Avoid a government default by lifting the debt ceiling through March of 2017.

The government will stay open.

The federal government’s fiscal year begins on October 1st every year. This year—as has often occurred in recent years—Congress had not agreed to the federal government’s operating budget before that date. To avoid a government shutdown, a short-term continuing resolution (or “CR”) was passed, which kept the federal government’s budget on cruise-control until December 11. This gave legislators extra time to find a consensus and avoid a government shutdown.

Since the beginning of October, legislators have been working behind the scenes to strike a deal that would also be acceptable to the White House. The deal they reached sets up a budget framework, but legislators still have significant details to work out. Disagreements over how funding is distributed between programs and the addition of ideological policy riders (i.e. limiting environmental regulation) could pose a threat to the deal.

Continue reading “The Deal’s Done: What’s in the Budget Agreement”

House approves budget deal in big 266-167 vote

House approves budget deal in big 266-167 vote

By Mike Lillis and Peter Schroeder – 10/28/15 05:14 PM EDT

House lawmakers in both parties joined forces Wednesday to pass a sweeping budget deal that marks both a parting victory for outgoing Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and a valedictory gift for his likely replacement, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).

The final vote was 266 to 167, with 79 Republicans joining every Democrat in sealing passage. Ryan was among the supporters.

The legislation, which raises federal spending levels and expands the government’s borrowing authority, would push two of Congress’s fiercest fiscal fights well beyond next year’s elections, avoiding potential standoffs with President Obama and easing Ryan’s transition into the Speaker’s chair. Continue reading “House approves budget deal in big 266-167 vote”

Ryan says budget process ‘stinks,’ but deal expected to pass

Ryan says budget process ‘stinks,’ but deal expected to pass

By Ian Swanson and Scott Wong – 10/27/15 09:36 AM EDT

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) is distancing himself from a pending budget deal ahead of his expected election this week as Speaker.

Ryan told CNN’s Manu Raju he doesn’t have a position yet on the deal negotiated by Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), the man he is likely to succeed.

“I’m reserving judgment on this agreement because, quite frankly, I haven’t seen it yet on paper,” Ryan said of the budget bill, which was posted late Monday night.

But Ryan criticized how the deal to extend the government’s borrowing limit and increase spending came together, saying “this process stinks” in the interview televised on CNN. Continue reading “Ryan says budget process ‘stinks,’ but deal expected to pass”

White House, GOP near two-year budget deal

White House, GOP near two-year budget deal

Getty Images

By Alexander Bolton – 10/26/15 12:35 PM EDT

Senior White House officials and congressional leaders are nearing a deal to raise the debt limit and set the budget for the next two years, say sources familiar with the talks.

The agreement is not yet final as negotiators still need to settle a dispute over controversial policy riders, but congressional leaders hope to announce something Monday evening, according to a Senate source. The deal would cover the 2016 and 2017 budget years. Continue reading “White House, GOP near two-year budget deal”

Obama would veto any debt-ceiling bill with spending cuts

Obama would veto any debt-ceiling bill with spending cuts

Getty Images

By Jordan Fabian – 10/23/15 02:53 PM EDT

President Obama would veto any bill to raise the debt limit if spending cuts are attached, the White House said Friday.

“Yes,” spokesman Eric Schultz told reporters when asked whether the president would kill such a measure.

It’s the clearest sign yet from the White House that Obama will only accept a clean bill to extend the nation’s borrowing authority before a fast-approaching Nov. 3 deadline. Continue reading “Obama would veto any debt-ceiling bill with spending cuts”