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Congress Sprints to Slam $1 Tril Splurge Bill Before D-Day

In a nail-biting race against the clock, Congress is hustling to push through a whopping $1 trillion spending bill before the looming shutdown deadline. The thrilling saga began when lawmakers unveiled the 1012-page bill overnight Thursday, setting the stage for a frantic dash to get it stamped and signed by President Joe Biden before midnight on Friday.

Shortly before the crack of dawn, appropriators reveled in the big reveal of the minibus package, which merges funding for the remaining spending bills for the 2023 fiscal year. This marked the triumphant end of a nearly yearlong process to fund the government, which had been extended four times due to bumpy negotiations.

The legislation covers a whopping 70% of the federal government and includes crucial funding for the Pentagon, State Department, Labor Department, Health and Human Services Department, Department of Homeland Security, and foreign operations. The ballad of the spending package comes after intense negotiations between the White House and Congress nearly fell apart over the weekend, mainly due to disagreements on border security policies. But fear not, dear reader, as lawmakers miraculously found common ground just in the nick of time on Monday evening.

In a jubilant statement, Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) boasted about the $1 trillion minibus package, hailing it as a resounding victory for conservative policy. He reveled in the triumph of fending off extreme Democrat proposals, imposing hefty cuts to wasteful agencies and programs, while fortifying border security and national defense.

Among the major highlights is a whopping 5.2% troop pay increase, and a significant slice to the Pentagon’s climate programs and its diversity, equity, and inclusion policies – pheeeew, talk about slicing the budget pie!

The bill also contains conservative wins like a 6% cut to foreign aid, zilch funding to the UNRWA, and preserving the Hyde Amendment, which gives Republicans a triumphant policy win against abortion.

And hold onto your hats, folks, because the spending package is putting a firm kibosh on the banning of gas stoves. That’s right, your trusty gas stove is safe and sound, thanks to these valiant politicians fighting the good fight.

But that’s not all! Republicans are victorious in securing a provision that only allows the good ol’ U.S. flag to be flown over U.S. diplomatic facilities. Bye-bye pride flag and confederate flag – Uncle Sam ain’t got no time for any of that!

Despite all these monumental wins for conservatives, the battle is not yet over. Democrats are seizing on certain provisions in the spending package, heralding the exclusion of Republicans’ signature border bill, and advocating for 12,000 new Special Immigrant Visas for Afghan nationals who aided the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2021. And don’t forget the absence of any “poison pill” policy riders on abortion, LGBTQ issues, or diversity, equity, and inclusion.

With the race against time reaching a fever pitch, the House is poised to vote on the legislation amidst the ticking countdown to the shutdown deadline. But, wait, there’s a twist! House rules dictate that legislative text must be available for at least 72 hours before lawmakers can vote on the bill. That would mean the House wouldn’t be able to vote until Saturday at the earliest, after the deadline has come and gone.

The suspense is palpable as we await the final outcome of this thrilling political thriller. Will the lawmakers bend the rules and expedite the bill as quickly as possible? Only time will tell if Congress can pull off this adrenaline-pumping feat before the clock runs out!

Written by Staff Reports

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