Lawmakers Unveil Deal That Would Push a Shutdown Fight to After the Midterms

(Bloomberg) -- House and Senate lawmakers unveiled a deal Thursday that would delay until after Dec. 7 the potential for a partial U.S. government shutdown over funding for President Donald Trump’s border wall.

Republicans and Democrats said they have an agreement on a stopgap spending measure into December as well as on full-year funding bills for the Departments of Defense, Labor and Health and Human Services. The Senate is likely to vote on the bill package next week with the House following the week after.

By attaching the bills to the stopgap, lawmakers are forcing Trump to accept the bills as they are or cause a partial government shutdown on Oct. 1. Trump said last week that he’d like to shut down the government to force Democrats to fund a wall along the Mexican border but likely won’t do it before the Nov. 6 congressional elections.

The agreement, confirmed by leaders of the House and Senate appropriations committees, comes after the Senate Wednesday passed a $147 billion funding measure covering the Energy and Veterans Affairs department and the Army Corps of Engineers. The House is expected to send that bill to Trump’s desk.

Lawmakers will try to come to an agreement on four additional spending bills this month, while leaving three measures to the end of the year, including the one for the Homeland Security Department and any border wall.

The latest deal covers about 70 percent of the annual discretionary government budget with the $674 billion defense bill being the largest of the 12 annual appropriation bills.

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