Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced Wednesday that the chamber has reached a bipartisan 2-year spending deal, two days before the government shutdown deadline. It includes large increases on defense spending, funding to combat opioid addiction and substance abuse, and money for disaster relief efforts.
It does not include Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals protections, an issue that has been a sticking point for Democrats for several weeks.
"This bill is the product of extensive negotiations among congressional leaders and the White House," McConnell said. "No one would suggest it was perfect, but we worked hard to find common ground and stay focused on serving the American people."
His counterpart, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, agreed it wasn't flawless, but it was workable.
"We've reached a deal neither side loves, but both sides can be proud of," Schumer said. "That's compromise."
While it's surprising the Democrats agreed to a deal that does not include DACA, perhaps they learned something from the disastrous government shutdown a few weeks ago that did not sit well with the American people.
Interestingly, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has been speaking for the past three hours on the House floor demanding protections for "Dreamers." MSNBC anchors noticed the contrast.
Nancy Pelosi is on the House floor decrying the budget-deal-without-DACA while Chuck Schumer is on the Senate floor touting it— Kasie Hunt (@kasie) February 7, 2018
The deal reached Wednesday includes billions of dollars for both defense and non-defense spending.
It would increase defense spending by $80 billion over current law in this fiscal year and $85 billion in the one that begins Oct. 1, according to a congressional official familiar with the plan. Non-defense spending would rise by $63 billion this year and $68 billion next year. (Bloomberg)
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis thanked the Senate for finally working out a compromise.
“Today’s congressional action will ensure our military can defend our way of life, preserve the promise of prosperity, and pass on the freedoms you and I enjoy to the next generation,” he said during the White House press briefing.