The Senate voted 76-22 to open debate on a stopgap bill known as a continuing resolution, which would extend federal spending until November 17 and authorize roughly $6 billion each for domestic disaster response funding and aid to Ukraine to defend itself against Russia.
However, as both chambers disagree, a government shutdown is likely.
Government funding expires on October 1, the start of the federal budget year. A shutdown will effectively begin at 12:01 a.m. on Sunday if Congress is unable to pass a funding plan that the president signs into law.
House Republicans have rejected spending levels for fiscal year 2024 set in a deal Speaker Kevin McCarthy negotiated with Biden in May. The funding fight focuses on a relatively small slice of the $6.4 trillion U.S. budget for this fiscal year.
Millions of federal workers face delayed paychecks when the government shuts down, including many of the roughly 2 million military personnel and more than 2 million civilian workers across the nation.
Nearly 60% of federal workers are stationed in the Department of Defense, Veterans Affairs, and Homeland Security. While all of the military’s active-duty troops would continue to work, more than half of the Department of Defense’s civilian workforce, which is roughly 440,000 people, would be furloughed.
A government shutdown occurs when the legislative branch does not pass key bills that fund or authorize the operations of the executive branch, resulting in the cessation of some or all operations of a government. Government shutdowns in the United States have occurred periodically since 1980 and are the result of the failure to pass appropriations bills before the previous ones expire. The most recent shutdown happened in December 2018.
“As we continue to walk through and get these appropriation bills done, we see the other failure of President Biden – our Southern border. Every single day, Americans are dying from fentanyl. We see trains of illegal individuals coming up through there. We see our border agents bloodied in the fights that are happening at the border. The president continues to ignore it, but no more.”