WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday approved a $1.4 trillion government spending package, awarding a victory to President Donald Trump for his border wall, and Democrats plus budget for a series of national programmes. The much-disputed bill also funds a historic budget for the Pentagon and serves as a legislative locomotive that will push for the enactment of a large number of unrelated clauses, including the costly repeal of taxes on Barack Obama-era high-cost medical spending policies, aid for retired coal miners, and an 18- to 21-year increase as a legal age to buy tobacco products.
The package was unveiled Monday afternoon and passed less than 24 hours later as lawmakers prepare to conclude pending Trump’s impeachment as a backdrop. The lower house first approved a measure that funds national programs with 297 votes in favour and 120 against. However, a third of Democrats opposed the second proposal funding the military and the Department of Homeland Security, largely because it funds Trump’s border wall project, although it was approved 280 in favor of 138 against The Budget law would prevent a government shutdown this weekend and provide Trump with stable funding for his border wall, a move that frustrated the party’s Latino and liberal Democrats. The year-end package is based on a $1.4 trillion spending measure that culminates in a long and complicated battle over spending priorities. The law includes clauses that reflect the division of power in Washington. Republicans maintained the status quo in several abortion-related battles and in financing Trump’s border wall. Democrats, who have control of the lower house, achieved a 3.1 percent increase for civilian federal employees and the first installment to fund gun violence research after more than two decades of opposition. The result of the most recent chapter in the long border wall battle gives Trump $1.4 billion for new barriers — the same amount as last year _ while retaining Trump’s ability to use his budget powers to kick hand to other accounts to get several times that amount. It’s a blow to liberal opponents of the wall, but an acceptable exchange for pragmatic Democrats who wanted to get another $27 billion for their national programs and avoid the risk of simply funding the government on an automatic basis.