Senate sends $1.1T spending bill to Trump

Democrats' gleeful declarations that they outsmarted Republicans in a battle over a US$1.1 trillion (S$1.5 trillion) spending Bill that avoided a government shutdown drew the ire of the President. The House will vote on the bill today (May 3) and it is expected to pass there and the Senate before being signed by the president this week. Democrats have cheered the wins in the bill, which doesn't fund Mr. Trump's planned wall along the U.S. -Mexico border, provides funding for Planned Parenthood and gives the National Institutes of Health (NIH) a budget boost.

Trump's embrace of such a disruptive event came days after he accused Senate Democrats of seeking that same outcome and obstructing majority Republicans during budget negotiations. They blocked funding for Mr. Trump's border wall, though Republicans included some $12 billion for border and customs security.

The Senate and House this week approved a federal spending bill that includes millions to reimburse municipalities for additional expenses when Trump visits. Trump on Tuesday threatened a shutdown beyond the September deadline, and Mulvaney said he had "no problem" with that scenario if it changes what he called "business as usual" in Congress.

"Here we saw Democrats and Republicans working together in the best traditions of the Senate, and the president disparages it in a way that's destructive", Democratic Senate Leader Chuck Schumer said.

It reflects bipartisan culture among congressional appropriators, who long ago sorted out numerous spending fights Trump wants to renew this summer - over foreign aid, funding for the arts, Amtrak subsidies, grants to state and local governments, and development agencies like the Appalachian Regional Commission.

Republican senators are losing patience with President Trump's tweets and have called for his minders to take his mobile phone away after the President tweeted that the government "needs a good shutdown".

- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 2, 2017either elect more Republican Senators in 2018 or change the rules now to 51%. The Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell pushed through a rule change earlier this month to secure approval of Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, through a simple majority.

Mulvaney, a former lawmaker and former member of the Freedom Caucus, said on Wednesday the White House understands the sensitivity of the pre-existing conditions issue.

In a hastily called conference call announced soon after the tweets, Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney forcefully repeated the White House's arguments for why Republicans got a good deal.

"President Trump may not like what he sees in this budget deal, but it's risky and irresponsible to respond by calling for a shutdown", said Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., one of the architects of the previous bipartisan budget agreement with Ryan, said arguing otherwise mischaracterizes the negotiation. He also cited $1.5 billion in emergency money for border security.

The sweeping, 1,665-page bill also increases spending for NASA, medical research, and the FBI and other federal law enforcement agencies.

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