The clock is ticking on a government shutdown which will occur without budget action by Congress at midnight on October 1.  Last week saw more frustration from Republicans as the House was unable to make any headway, and in the Senate a handful of Republicans slowed progress on a so-called minibus bill that funded Agriculture, Transportation, HUD, FDA, and military construction.  However, the first vote to move the minibus spending bill forward passed with a large bipartisan majority of 85 to 12, which was a positive signal. 

Over the weekend two Republican groups in the House, the conservative House Freedom Caucus and the more moderate Main Street Caucus announced they had reached an agreement on a CR that if passed would postpone a government shutdown until October 31 giving Congress 30 more days to act on the 12 budget bills. The House Republican proposal would include a 30 day CR, most of the provisions in a previously House passed border security bill HR 2, and a one percent cut in government spending from the FY 2023 levels. However, the Defense Department, Veteran programs and FEMA emergency funding would be exempt from the cuts meaning that other areas of government could see discretionary spending cuts of up to 8%. The Republican proposal would not include the Whi...

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