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Leaders rush to pass $1.2 trillion spending bill to prevent shutdown.

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Leaders rush to pass $1.2 trillion spending bill to prevent shutdown.

Top congressional negotiators unveiled a $1.2 trillion spending bill to fund the government through September, with the race against time underway to avert a potential partial government shutdown over the weekend. Lawmakers are working on passing the bill before a Friday midnight deadline to avoid any disruptions in critical services provided by various government departments. Delays in negotiations have pushed Congress six months behind schedule in finalizing the funding and policy disputes.

The bipartisan compromise includes victories for both Democrats and Republicans, with highlights such as funding increases for federal child care and education programs secured by Democrats, alongside provisions for 2,000 new Border Patrol agents and additional detention beds favored by Republicans. The bill addresses various funding priorities, including technology at the southern border and the expansion of detention beds compared to the previous year’s legislation. Lawmakers structured the measure to align with previous spending deals and included cuts to the State Department’s budget and foreign aid programs to adhere to fiscal constraints.

Republicans successfully inserted a provision barring funding for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinians until March 2025, citing concerns related to alleged involvement in attacks on Israel. Democrats championed significant spending increases in areas such as child care, education, and health research, underscoring a shared commitment to programs that support families and children. The legislation also includes funding for projects such as a new FBI headquarters in Maryland and additional security measures at the request of the Supreme Court, reflecting a comprehensive approach to government spending priorities.

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