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Federal Government Running for Now, Mississippi Senator’s Plan Blocked

WASHINGTON, D.C.–The federal government will likely stay running for now, even though a continuing resolution was not passed in the U.S. Senate Thursday. Senate Democrats blocked the bill by Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) that would have kept the government running full force, through Dec. 11.

The sticking point for Democrats on Cochran’s bill is that it would take funding away from Planned Parenthood and instead put it in community-based health organizations. Pres. Obama had threatened to veto the bill if it passed.

Another continuing resolution, which skips plans to defund Planned Parenthood, will likely be taken up Monday, said Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kent.).

“The Senate’s repeated failure to debate and pass appropriations bills is an abdication of a fundamental congressional responsibility.  The minority party’s refusal to allow a vote on these bills has forced us to pass a Continuing Resolution just to maintain the most rudimentary operations of government,” said Cochran in a statement Thursday. He’s the chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, the committee that decides which money goes where.

“I encourage my colleagues to join me in passing a Continuing Resolution to ensure continued government operations while we debate and pass appropriations bills on the Senate floor.”

“Under Sen. Cochran’s leadership, the Senate Appropriations Committee has passed all 12 spending bills this year,” said Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.). “That has not been accomplished in the Senate since 2009. Unfortunately, Senate Democrats, despite their overwhelming support of these spending measures in the committee, have blocked us from sending these bills to the President’s desk. They have left us with little choice but to try to pass a short-term continuing resolution to keep the government open and working for the American people.

“I strongly support the provision in the bill to defund Planned Parenthood, and I remain committed to fighting for the rights of the unborn and shielding taxpayers from funding this organization. I share the feelings of many Mississippians who have called and written in to my office to express their disgust with the lack of compassion shown by Planned Parenthood executives as well as the gruesome practices they carry out. Although the measure was blocked by Senate Democrats, this debate is far from over.”

 

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