Washington – The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday approved a temporary measure to avoid a partial shutdown of the federal government until next week, when lawmakers will have to vote on a broader bill to provide funding until Nov. 18.
Just three legislators were present at the session, given that the lower house is in recess for the commemoration of the Jewish new year, but earlier Republicans and Democrats had agreed to hold a voice vote on Thursday to pass the temporary measure.
The Republican-controlled lower chamber must vote on the broader financing bill next Tuesday.
That measure was already approved on Monday by the Senate, where Democrats are in the majority.
Without the accord, the federal government would have been forced - starting this Saturday, when the new fiscal year begins - to halt many of its operations, something that has not happened since the 1990s.
The basis for the dispute between the two parties was in the budget for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which opened the way to the agreement by announcing that for now it has financing available.
Here is where the main problem lies, which for the moment has been shelved but not solved, because Republicans insist that, in exchange for providing FEMA with more funds, cutbacks must be made in other areas of the budget, in particular in social programs, something that Democrats oppose.