Late on Sunday evening, details emerged about a new spending agreement that congressional leaders had reached to keep the federal government open past this week, when current funding runs out, and through the end of September. The deal is looking like a huge victory for Democrats—and a massive failure for Donald Trump and his Republican Party:
The bipartisan agreement includes $12.5 billion in new military spending and $1.5 billion more for border security, a major priority for Republican leaders in Congress.In a way, that’s even more humiliating for Trump—and an even bigger betrayal of his supporters: There’s more money for border security but the government is forbidden from using it to pay for that insane wall. Maybe they’re still hoping Mexico will pony up?
The agreement follows weeks of tense negotiations between Democrats and GOP leaders after President Trump insisted that the deal include funding to begin building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Trump eventually dropped that demand, leaving Congress to resolve lingering issues over several unrelated policy measures.
The new border-security money comes with strict limitations that the Trump administration use it only for technology investments and repairs to existing fencing and infrastructure, the aides said.
The rest of the bill is also an amazing win for Democrats:
The agreement also includes several policy victories for Democrats, whose votes will be necessary to pass the measure in the Senate. Democrats fought to include $295 million to help Puerto Rico continue making payments to Medicaid, $100 million to combat opioid addiction, and increases in energy and science funding that Trump had proposed cutting. If passed, the legislation will ensure that Planned Parenthood continues to receive federal funding through September.Hold on, there’s more:
The White House also backed away from language to take away grants from "sanctuary cities" that do not share information about people's immigration status with federal authorities.Hot damn! It’s hard to believe that Republicans control the House, the Senate, and the presidency, isn’t it? Because this bill sure as hell looks like it was written by Democrats. It’s truly amazing that despite its huge majorities and rock-solid hold on Washington, the GOP simply cannot govern in any way, shape or form.
Of course, Congress has yet to pass this bill, and who knows what kind of fuss conservatives will try to kick up. But if far-right Republicans threaten not to support this package, then GOP leadership will have to troll for even more Democratic votes … which would require making the bill even more liberal. The alternative would be a government shutdown, which would fall squarely on Republican shoulders—again, see that bit about how they’re in charge of all the levers of power.