Omnibus Spending Bill Passes
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate overcame Democratic delaying tactics Thursday and sent President Bush an overdue $373 billion bill financing a vast swath of government and bearing a bushel of victories for the White House.
Senators approved the measure 65-28 a month after House passage.
The bill finances agriculture, veterans and most other domestic programs for the budget year that began October 1 — nearly four months ago.
The mammoth measure also protects Bush administration policies on overtime pay, media ownership and food labeling. Angry over those issues, Democrats had succeeded on Tuesday in blocking a vote on final passage.
While I don’t see the direct connection to funding and spending issues, the bill also contains the President’s desired alteration of overtime rules (hint: less overtime) and easing of media consolidation restrictions:
The bill would let the administration proceed with new rules that would let companies pay overtime to fewer white collar workers, and allow media conglomerates to own more television stations.
And there’s something for everyone (though I’d like to see a break down by district and party):
The measure also has 7,932 so-called earmarks — for local items like museum upgrades and agricultural research — costing $10.7 billion, according to Taxpayers for Common Sense, a group that pushes for lower spending.