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Biden Signs Bill to Keep Federal Government Open

President Joe Biden speaks before signing executive orders at the White House, January 28, 2021. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

President Biden signed a bill to avoid a U.S. government shutdown and keep the federal government open through December 3, hours before a midnight deadline, the White House announced on Thursday.

The bill includes a continuing resolution to fund federal agencies and various government projects, as well as $28.6 billion in disaster relief for various states such as Louisiana, which is recovering from damage caused by Hurricane Ida. Another $6.3 billion is allocated in the bill toward resettlement of Afghan refugees who fled Afghanistan following the U.S. withdrawal and Taliban takeover of the country.

Democrats dropped a measure to suspend the federal debt limit from the bill earlier this week following Republican opposition. Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) has stated that Republicans would not support Democrats’ efforts to raise the debt ceiling to enable additional government spending.

“We’re able to fund the government today because the majority accepted reality. The same thing will need to happen on the debt limit next week,” McConnell said on Thursday.

Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) praised passage of the resolution to continue funding the federal government.

“This is a good outcome, one I’m happy we are getting done,” Schumer said in comments reported by the Associated Press. “With so many things to take care of in Washington, the last thing the American people need is for the government to grind to a halt.”

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Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.

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