By Sara Wyant

© Copyright Agri-Pulse Communications, Inc.

Washington, Dec. 17 –Senate Democrats abandoned efforts late Thursday to pass a $1.2 trillion spending bill and accept GOP demands for a short-term measure instead.

Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said he was forced to drop the bill after nine Republicans who had previously indicated they would back the measure wouldn't now vote for it. The package contained over 6,000 earmarks totalling $8 billion


Republican leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said passing a “gigantic, trillion dollar bill” through Congress at the end of the year is “no way to legislate.

“Just a few weeks after the voters told us they don’t want us rushing major pieces of complicated, costly, far-reaching legislation through Congress, we get this.”

Senate Republicans have offered a two-month spending bill that would expire on Feb. 18. By then, the GOP will have assumed control of the House and picked up several seats in the Senate.

Last week, the House passed a $1.2 trillion bill that would fund the federal government through September 2011, which contained no earmarks. Reid said he wouldn't attempt to bring that legislation to the floor, because Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) indicated that no members of his party would support it.

To return to the News Index page, click: