Budget Votes in Senate Just for Show
The plan by Senate leaders to hold votes this week on competing versions of plans to fund the federal government for the last six-and-a-half months of the fiscal year is intended to show that the two parties each will need to give ground if they want to complete work on a FY 2011 spending measure. Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) does not expect votes on either the Democratic proposal, which would cut $6.5 billion from current funding levels, or the House plan (H.R. 1), which would slash spending by $61.5 billion, to succeed, reported CQ Today.
A compromise agreement still is far off, though, as any deal reached between the moderate leadership of the two parties will have to gain the support of the vocal conservative faction of the Republican Party and liberals on the Democratic side, according to the online publication.
In the absence of an agreement on FY 2011 spending, federal operations most likely will continue to be funded by short-term spending bills. Republican leaders have said they would keep approving stopgap funding bills that trim spending at the rate of $2 billion per week until a deal is reached with Democrats, reported the Washington Post.