Here's the scoop on what's happening this week in Congress.
On Wednesday, February 13, the House reached an agreement on the final seven spending bills that need to be passed to prevent another government shutdown before the continuing resolution ends at midnight on Friday, February 15. The Senate passed the bill on February 14, and sent it to the House for final passage, clearing the way for the President’s signature. The final bill includes $1.375 billion for funding the southern border wall, much less than the $5.7 billion the President wants. Prior to the passage of the bill on the Senate floor Majority Leader McConnell indicated that President Trump will sign the bill, and then declare a national emergency to get additional funds for the border wall.
Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) plans to reintroduce the American Cures Act. This legislation would authorize steady growth in federal appropriations for biomedical research conducted at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Department of Defense Health Program (DHP), and the Veterans Medical and Prosthetics Research Program. Durbin aims to reintroduce the bill during the week of February 25, after the February recess.