US: US Congress adopts new budget package
With the approval of a new budget by 2021, Congress has averted the threat of a shutdown until after the election. In addition, the debt ceiling was raised.
The US Congress has passed a bipartisan agreement on the budget. This averts the danger of a government deadlock beyond the November 2020 presidential election. After the House of Representatives, a majority vote in the Senate for the previously agreed budget and for an increase in the debt ceiling. US President Donald Trump still has to sign the law.
Sixty-seven senators voted in favor of the compromise negotiated by the Trump government with leading representatives of the congress. 28 voted against it. Resistance to the rising spending was mainly from the ranks of Trump's Republicans: Senate voted 29 republicans on Thursday for the package and 23 against. They criticized the expenses as too high and complained that there were no credit checks.
The US president campaigned shortly before the vote for approval in the Senate. "The budget deal is phenomenal for our great military, for our veterans, and for jobs, jobs, jobs," he wrote in the short message service Twitter. To the address of his party friends, the US President wrote that there would be plenty of time to lower spending again.
Previously, the Republicans had agreed with the Democrats on spending in the amount of 1.37 trillion US dollars (1.22 trillion euros) in 2020 and slightly more in 2021. Following this, Republican majority leader Mitch McConnel and Democrat and House Chair Nancy Pelosi voted to get the package agreed as soon as possible.
The US debt ceiling sets the law on how many new debts the government is allowed to make to settle its expenses. The limit is raised regularly, but this right is solely at the Congress with its two chambers. If the upper limit remains, no new money can be lent and the government can not pay its debts. This so-called shutdown would have threatened if no agreement had been reached.
Last year, there were two shutdowns in the wake of a budget dispute. It was mainly about the granting of funds to build the controversial border wall to Mexico.