Support for Smaller Spending Packages Grows in Senate
Senate Republicans would like to pass several, smaller bundles of fiscal 2012 spending bills, rather than combining all 12 measures needed to fund the federal government into one gigantic omnibus.
At this point, it is not clear which approach Senate Democrats favor, although Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) plans to bring three FY 2012 spending bills to the floor this month. Those three bills — agriculture, commerce-justice-science and transportation-housing and urban development — could be joined into a “minibus,” reported CQ Today.
Senate Republicans, for their part, want to get back to some semblance of “regular order,” under which the two chambers pass most spending measures as stand-alone bills.
The House is considering which approach to employ as well, with the defense appropriations measure being a likely candidate for inclusion in a minibus, according to CQ.
So far, the House has passed six individual spending bills for the new fiscal year, including defense and military construction, while the Senate has passed only the milcon measure.