McConnell urges passage of 'bi-partisan' funding resolution
With less than 6 days to go before the government runs out of money, Congress will vote this week on a stop gap measure that would fund the government through December.
What is not in the Continuing Resolution is far more significant than what it contains. Not included are any controversial policy riders. Funding the battle the Zika virus is included, but at reduced levels.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell gives some more details of what the CR is funding:
It’s a good bill because of what it does have. It contains funding for all current government operations at agreed-upon, bipartisan spending levels and under the terms and conditions President Obama signed into law last December and that more than 30 Senate Democrats supported.
It contains funding for the new laws President Obama just signed, like the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act that will allow us to fight the prescription opioid and heroin epidemic.
It contains a significant down payment on flood relief for the many states like Maryland, Texas, West Virginia, and Louisiana that have recently been impacted by severe flooding. It also contains record levels of funding for our veterans.
Both parties and, more importantly, our constituents have called for all of these provisions and we've included them, as well as the funding we need to fight Zika. This bill contains the resources necessary to get the mosquito population under control, bring advanced diagnostics and treatments online, and develop vaccines to finally ensure expectant mothers and their babies are safe.
It was unfortunate to see Democrats block this essential anti-Zika funding several times over the summer, but the concerns they raised then have been addressed in this bill in a bipartisan way. Now, with thousands infected by Zika already, there is no time to lose and zero reason to stall this essential relief again. Democrats like Sen. Bill Nelson of Florida understand that urgency and support this common sense package.
“This bill provides a clean $1.1 billion to help stop the spread of Zika virus with no political riders,” Sen. Nelson said, “and I will support it.”
Sen. Nelson, a Democrat, and Sen. Marco Rubio, a Republican, have both seen first-hand the devastating toll Zika has already taken in their home state and across our country.
We’ve all seen the devastating toll that severe flooding and the heroin and prescription opioid crisis have taken from coast to coast to coast.
The fact that the CR funds the government at levels agreed upon last year is irrelevant. Those levels are unacceptable because they add tens of billions to the deficit. The military is upset because the reduced funding agreed to will hamper operations and readiness.
About the only people who are truly happy with this CR are the bureaucrats who will once again be able to expand their power through additional funding.
If this is "bi-partisanship," give me gridlock every day.