After months of endless bickering back and forth between Republicans and Democrats in the United States Congress, a resolution on an extension of the 2011 fiscal year budget has been reached. With the help of extensions of the previous budget plan and the willingness of both parties to give in on key issues for the sake of compromise, a government shutdown, which at many times seemed not just very realistic, but also quite likely, has been avoided.
President Barack Obama and Congress had until the end of Friday to reach an agreement or else the government shutdown would occur. With just over sixty minutes left Friday night, all of the pieces of the puzzle came together for the deal to be struck.
A new budget plan that would cut back $2 billion in spending has been agreed upon and is going to run for one more week, ending on April 15th.
Congress voted on the new extension quickly. Voting via voice, the United States Senate passed the measure as soon as the deal was reached. Then the House of Representatives did the same right after.
President Obama is expected to sign the legislature on Saturday to turn into law the budget extension for the next week.
Obama did tell reporters after the agreement was reached, “The government will be open for business. Both parties reached an agreement that will allow our small businesses to get the loans they need, our families to get the mortgages they applied for, and hundreds of thousands of Americans to show up at work and take home their paychecks on time.”
In the end, no real resolution was reached. A plan for the remainder of the fiscal year, which ends at the end of September, has not been reached.
The fight over the budget has proven to be such a high task for the members of Congress; Americans must be wondering what the battle over the 2012 fiscal year budget is going to look like.
Everyone knows that there are issues Democrats are not willing to bend on that benefit the needy in the United States. However, Republicans are adamant that many of those programs are not needed and are thus a waste of money. As a result, we see a great deadlock in Congress and a lack of progress.
If the difficulty that Congress sees as it tries to get together a budget for half of a year is any indication, the budgets of years to come are going to need to be discussed well in advance.