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Government Shutdown Over After Just Several Hours

Federal employees will report to work Friday, and they'll get paid for it.

WASHINGTON, D.C.--Both the U.S. House and Senate have passed a bi-partisan budget bill that ended a government shutdown that, this time, only lasted a few hours.

Government employees will report for work Friday.

"Funding for education, infrastructure, fighting drug abuse, and medical research will all, for the first time in years, get very significant increases, and we have placed Washington on a path to deliver more help to the middle class in the future," said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, praising the bill, which Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) referred to as a "true compromise".

"I ran for office because I was very critical of President Obama's trillion-dollar deficits," said Kentucky Sen. Ron Paul (R), offering opposition to the plan. "Now we have Republicans hand in hand with Democrats offering us trillion-dollar deficits. I can't in all honesty look the other way."

He faced sharp criticism after the speech and attempts to keep the Senate from voting on the bill, which were successful for several hours.

The House finally passed the budget bill around 5 a.m.

Hoosier perspective

"We are delivering on our promise to rebuild the military and get our brave servicemen and women the tools, training, and support they need to keep our nation safe," Tweeted Rep. Jackie Walorski (R).

“I pledged to my constituents that if they elected me to Congress I would fight to rebuild our military," said Rep. Jim Banks (R).

"While far from perfect, this budget agreement will finally give our military the long-overdue resources it needs. Years of defense spending cuts under President Obama have significantly hurt the readiness of our forces and affected the training, equipment and morale of our men and women who wear the uniform. This bill reverses that trend and will ensure those who serve will have what they need to keep our country safe," said Banks.

Rep. Andre Carson (D) voted no on the bill, but did not immediately give an explanation. Rep. Todd Rokita voted no. Rep. Luke Messer voted yes.

“For too long, Congress has chosen to kick the can down the road with short-term funding bills without providing any long-term budget certainty," said Sen. Joe Donnelly.

"I supported this bipartisan, two-year budget deal because it would allow military and national security leaders to plan for the future, while also making significant investments in infrastructure, community health centers, and in the fight against the opioid epidemic.”

Background on the bipartisan deal:

  • Would set spending levels for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2018 and Fiscal Year 2019
  • Would keep the federal government open through March 23 while specific details are worked out on a longer-term funding package.
  • Would allow for significant investments in military readiness that the Department of Defense has been asking for, and which have been hampered by repeated short term funding measures.
  • Would allow for $6 billion over two years toward programs combatting the opioid abuse epidemic.
  • Would reauthorize the Community Health Center Fund for two years and extend the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for ten years, an increase following last month’s agreement for a 6-year extension.
  • Would invest in infrastructure, including surface transportation, rural water and waste water, rural broadband, and energy infrastructure.
  • Would create a Joint Select Committee tasked with solving the multiemployer pension crisis.

PHOTO: CNN Newsource

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