While Congress debates a trillion dollar coronavirus relief bill, they have another spending bill that needs to pass to keep the government open. It is hard to fathom the amount of money that will be spent this summer by the federal government. The 1.3 trillion dollar bill will keep America’s political system moving for the 2021 fiscal year.
The House passed the bill with a 217-197 vote, mostly down party lines. There are two more spending bills in the House, but will most likely not get to the floor. The bill focuses on spending bills for defense, labor, health and human services, commerce, justice, science, energy and water, financial services, general government, transportation, housing, and urban development.
Despite President Trump’s promise to veto any bill that includes the change to Confederate-named military bases, this bill includes $1 million to do just that. It also included language to block funding for the border wall, one of President Trump’s key campaign promises.
The bill also include a 3% pay increase for troops, and more than half of the money in the spending bill will go to defense funding. Furthermore, it gives even more money for Coronavirus issues, including $5 billion for the National Institutes of Health, and $9 billion for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
And of course, the bill also focuses on funds for renewable energy, and provides $500 million for election security. The bill left out, however, language to defund agencies like ICE. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has spent the last few weeks advocating to strip this agency completely, similar to how she has been calling to completely defund the police. it is unclear if any spending bill for the fiscal year of 2021 will pass before the election, as both parties are hopeful to win back the majority in both chambers.