U.S. Capitol building at sunset.
The House, anxious to get out of town fast for the next two-week recess, passed the continuing resolution to fund the government for the next six months in a 318-109 vote Thursday morning. The bill funds the government for the remainder of fiscal year 2013. Yes, all this angst for just six months of funding.

The spending bill doesn't reverse the $85 billion sequester cuts, but it does shift some spending within departments to try to mitigate some of the worst cuts to things like child nutrition programs, meat inspection and tuition assistance for military service members. But it's a Band-Aid, and lessening the pain for those programs only took away funding from other ones. The painful, damaging sequester continues.

While there won't be a government shutdown next week, this isn't a resolution of the sequester overall; it's just authorizing spending for the next six months. So while one crisis was averted, it's only a temporary fix and Congress will have to pass another short-term spending bill when this one expires—that is, if the House, Senate and White House don't concur on a budget and series of appropriation bills between now and September. (As if that could happen given what House Republicans passed in the way of a budget.)

But the next continuing resolution is going to be a mere hiccup compared to the next debt ceiling hike, if Republicans have their way. They're already clamoring for more and deeper spending cuts, giving notice that the debt ceiling is ripe once again for hostage-taking.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Thu Mar 21, 2013 at 08:30 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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