President Joe Biden signs $1.7 trillion bill funding government operations
President Joe Biden has signed a $1.7 trillion spending bill that will keep the federal government operating through the end of the federal budget year in September 2023 and provide tens of billions of dollars in new aid to Ukraine for its fight against the Russian military.
Biden had until late Friday to sign the bill to avoid a partial government shutdown.
The Democratic-controlled House passed the bill 225-201, mostly along party lines, just before Christmas. The House vote came a day after the Senate, also led by Democrats, voted 68-29 to pass the bill with significantly more Republican support.
Biden had said passage was proof that Republicans and Democrats can work together.
Rep. Kevin McCarthy, the House Republican leader who hopes to become speaker when a new session of Congress opens on Jan. 3, argued during floor debate that the bill spends too much and does too little to curb illegal immigration and the flow of fentanyl into the U.S. from Mexico.
“This is a monstrosity that is one of the most shameful acts I’ve ever seen in this body,” McCarthy said of the legislation.
McCarthy is appealing for support from staunch conservatives in the GOP caucus, who have largely blasted the bill for its size and scope. Republicans will have a narrow House majority come Jan. 3 and several conservative members have vowed not to vote for McCarthy to become speaker.
The funding bill includes a roughly 6% increase in spending for domestic initiatives, to $772.5 billion. Spending on defense programs will increase by about 10%, to $858 billion.
Previously:Congress OKs $1.7 trillion spending plan with Ukraine aid, TikTok ban. Here’s what we know.
Passage was achieved hours before financing for federal agencies was set to expire. Lawmakers had approved two short-term spending measures to keep the government operating, and a third, funding the government through Dec. 30, passed last Friday. Biden signed it to ensure services would continue until Congress sent him the full-year measure, called an omnibus bill.
The massive bill, which topped out at more than 4,000 pages, wraps together 12 appropriations bills, aid to Ukraine and disaster relief for communities recovering from natural disasters. It also contains scores of policy changes that lawmakers worked to include in the final major bill considered by that session of Congress.