There was pushback from the far left and far right of the U.S. House of Representatives Thursday night, but not enough to stop the House from narrowly passing a poison pill spending bill—topping $1 trillion—in an effort to avoid a U.S. government shutdown. The measure now heads to the U.S. Senate, where it also faces an uncertain future. If approved, the spending plan would fund most of the federal government through September of next year.
But the bill has a fair amount of controversial Christmas gifts to special interests. For example, it includes a rider that would roll back regulations imposed on the financial industry in the wake of the economic collapse of 2008, and another provision permits wealthy contributors to increase the amount of their donations to political parties for national conventions, election recounts or the construction of a party headquarters building.
Idaho's U.S. House members split their votes. Rep. Raul Labrador voted against the spending bill, but Rep. Mike Simpson voted in favor.
In a late night press release, Labrador called the spending plan, "A 1,603-page bill larded with pork and favors for special interests."
In the end, 67 Republicans and 139 Democrats voted against the bill, but 162 Republicans and 57 Democrats voted "yes."
Meanwhile, over in the U.S. Senate, Democratic Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren ripped the provisions of the spending bill that she says favor Wall Street interests.
“A vote for this bill is a vote for future taxpayer bailouts of Wall Street,” Warren said in a feisty speech. “Why in the last minute as you head out the door and a spending bill must be passed are you making it a priority to do Wall Street’s bidding? Who do you work for: Wall Street or the American people?”
And at the White House, the Obama administration has hinted that it would support the spending plan.