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U.S. Senate Majority Leader McConnell Unveils Continuing Resolution Including Zika Response Spending Package

CQ News: McConnell CR Applies Across-the-Board Spending Reduction
“A stopgap spending bill offered by Senate Republicans on Thursday would continue government funding until Dec. 9 at fiscal 2016 levels. In order for the bill to be scored as adhering to the $1.067 trillion, fiscal 2016 base discretionary spending limit, appropriators applied just under a 0.5 percent across-the-board reduction in spending for the continuing resolution…” (Krawzak, 9/22).

CQ News: Senate Republicans Roll Out Their Own CR, Hit Democratic Wall
“Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell filed the chamber’s first public text of a continuing resolution early Thursday afternoon that keeps the government running through Dec. 9, and it was met with immediate opposition by the Senate Appropriations Committee’s top Democrat. … The McConnell version of a CR, among other things: Provides $1.1 billion to combat the Zika virus, without an environmental exemption for pesticide spraying sought by Republicans…” (McCrimmon, 9/22).

The Hill: McConnell unveils new Zika funding package
“Senate Republicans on Thursday released the latest draft of a $1.1 billion funding package to fight the Zika virus, and it contains some of the controversial funding offsets that Democrats have long opposed. The proposal, which is included in the 160-page stopgap spending bill, would put an end to partisan fights over Planned Parenthood and pesticide use that have helped hold up Zika funding since February. … But the long-awaited funding package also includes … offsets that will likely draw ire from Democrats: The package is partly paid for using the State Department’s unused money to fight the Ebola virus and leftover ObamaCare funding from when local officials decided not to set up exchanges. But the bill is not fully paid for, which could set up a sticking point for House Republicans…” (Ferris, 9/22).

USA TODAY: McConnell offers plan to fund government, fight Zika
“…[McConnell] said a vote to advance the bill will take place Tuesday, giving senators time to review the legislation and negotiate possible changes…” (Kelly, 9/22).

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