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Obama: Avoid ‘Ideological’ Fights on Spending Bill

Obama (Mandel Ngan / Pool)
Obama (Mandel Ngan / Pool)

President Barack Obama is applauding lawmakers for passing a long-term debt and budget deal, but he also wants them to avoid sinking upcoming spending bills that would enact it with “ideological” policy provisions.  

The Senate, on the backs of Democratic votes, early Friday morning sent to Obama’s desk a two-year spending deal that raises defense and domestic spending caps, while also raising the debt ceiling into 2017. Obama hailed it in a statement several hours later as a “responsible, long-term budget agreement that reflects our values, grows our economy and creates jobs.”  

The president said he will sign the massive plan, hammered out by his budget director, Shaun Donovan, and top congressional leaders.  

After that, however, lawmakers must write a sweeping omnibus spending measure that has to pass by Dec. 11 to avert a government shutdown. That bill would fund federal agencies at the higher levels made possible by the bipartisan accord.  

On Capitol Hill, senior lawmakers, include Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., already are warning any controversial policy provisions on hot-button issues could doom that measure. Obama seconded that warning on Friday.  

“Congress should build on this by getting to work on spending bills that invest in America’s priorities without getting sidetracked by ideological provisions that have no place in America’s budget process,” he said. “If we can do that, we’ll help our workers and businesses keep growing the economy and building an America full of opportunity for all.”

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