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Congress seeks to avert shutdown with spending package

Lawmakers in the House and Senate said they agreed Thursday on a bipartisan fiscal package that seeks to avert President Donald Trump's promise to shut down the government in an effort to get funding for his proposed border wall.

The spending bills would fund some two-thirds of the government, including the Pentagon and the Health and Human Services Department. The package also includes a stop-gap spending measure to ensure the government stays open through Dec. 7. Details of the package have not been revealed.

Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J., chairman of the House Committee on Appropriations, said the bipartisan package -- should Trump sign it -- would avoid a battle over a potential shutdown until after the midterm elections.

Trump has threatened to force a government shutdown Oct. 1 if a spending bill doesn't include the billions of dollars he would need to build his border wall. Politico reported that lawmakers hope the fiscal packaged agreed upon Thursday will make it politically impossible for Trump to do so.

"The president will have to sign it into law or shut down the government," said Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn.

House and Senate aides told CNN that the White House said Trump plans to sign the package.

Meanwhile, the Senate voted Wednesday in favor of a three-bill minibus funding Veterans Affairs, energy and water, and legislative branch programs. The House was scheduled to vote on the package Thursday.
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