Senate Rejects House Spending Measure as Shutdown Looms

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from The Wall Street Journal,

GOP Weighs Next Steps as Obama Urges Republicans to Stop Trying to Attach ‘Ideological’ Requests to Budget.

The Senate rejected a last-minute spending measure approved over the weekend by the House, tossing the fight back into the lap of Speaker John Boehner with just hours to go until federal agencies begin cutting off services and furloughing workers.

The vote was 54-46 along party lines to reject a one-year delay of the health law, which was attached to a plan to fund the government through Dec. 15. The quick rejection left the nation on the brink of a partial government shutdown when the new fiscal year begins on Tuesday.

As the Democratic-controlled Senate sent the spending bill back to the House, GOP leaders, under pressure from conservatives, drafted a plan to keep the government funded, and began debating it Monday evening. But that, too, appears to have little chance of clearing the Senate.

The new House plan would keep the government funded but would also delay the health-care law’s individual mandate. It would also prohibit lawmakers from receiving federal contributions to offset some of their health-care premiums, and would limit such contributions for their aides.

“We’re confident that this issue will pass,” Mr. Boehner said. “This is a matter of funding the government and providing fairness to the American people. Why wouldn’t members of Congress vote for it?”

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