US House approves short-term funding bill ahead of govt shutdown deadline

Washington: The US House of Representatives has approved a short-term spending Bill that would keep federal agencies running through February, averting a partial shutdown just a day before government funding was set to expire.

The Democrats-held lower chamber approved the Bill on Thursday by a vote of 221-212. The measure now heads to the Senate, where a group of Republicans have threatened to delay the passage of the bill, Xinhua news agency reported.

US President Joe Biden needs to sign the legislation before the deadline of Friday midnight to avoid any lapse in federal government funding, which leaves senators just a few hours to bridge their differences.

In September, the US Congress already passed a stopgap measure to fund the government until December 3. In recent years, lawmakers have been constantly struggling to reach agreement on government spending, and it has been almost a routine to pass some type of stopgap measure during the holiday season.

“This is the 25th year in a row that Congress hasn’t passed appropriations Bills on time. It’s truly unacceptable that our leaders can’t fulfill this basic function of government,” said the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, a US watchdog group.

“With inflation high and debt near record levels, the last thing we need is to grease the wheels with even more deficit-financed spending,” it added.IANS

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