05.05.17

Leahy REAX To President Trump On Friday Afternoon Signing The Consolidated Appropriations Bill Into Law

. . . Bipartisan Majorities In Senate And House Rejected Many Sharply Partisan Cuts Proposed By President Trump, Deleted Funds For A New Southern Border Wall, And Increased Or Maintained Funding For The National Institutes Of Health, EPA And Other Agencies Targeted By The Trump Budget Proposal

President Trump Friday signed the Consolidated Appropriations Bill into law just hours before the midnight deadline when the current stop-gap measure funding the federal government expires.  The bill received strong bipartisan support in both the United States House and Senate and rejected steep cuts proposed by the White House in March.  The bill also does not include funding requested by the President for a border wall. 

This is the most significant major legislation to be enacted in the new Congress and new administration. The bill is the first appropriations bill negotiated and managed by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) under his new role as Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee.  Leahy succeeded in including a long list of Vermont’s priorities in the bill, including maintaining and preserving funding for LIHEAP, rejecting the Trump administration’s proposed elimination of cleanup funding for Lake Champlain, increasing help to states in dealing with the opioid crisis, protecting the work of the Environmental Protection Agency in monitoring and addressing clean air and water issues and climate change, and increasing funds for Pell Grants, which help lower-income families afford college for their children.  Leahy had insisted on deleting funds requested by the White House for taxpayer funding of a new border wall along the Southern Border, and negotiators agreed to delete those funds.

At home in Vermont, Leahy said:  “This is a good bill for Vermont, for the nation, and for all of the American people.  We took out more than 160 poison pill riders and instead focused sharply on our country’s real priorities.  This is how Congress can and should work.  Enough of the rhetoric, and enough of the political brinksmanship.  Congress’s success in producing this bill shows that when we come together and work through our differences, we can do the work of the American people.  I am glad that the President accepted Congress’s bipartisan work and has now signed this bill into law.  The collaborative work that brought us to this point lays the groundwork for our negotiations on the Fiscal Year 2018 appropriations bills, and I look forward to beginning that process.”  

Leahy’s statement on the bill can be found HERE: https://www.appropriations.senate.gov/news/minority/senate-appropriations-committee-vice-chair-patrick-leahy-statement-on-the-consolidated-appropriations-bill

An overview of Vermont Highlights can be found HERE: https://www.leahy.senate.gov/press/vermont-highlights-in-the-budget-agreement-negotiated-by-appropriations-committee-vice-chairman-leahy-and-other-appropriations-leaders

An overview of the entire bill can be found HERE: https://www.appropriations.senate.gov/news/minority/summary-fiscal-year-2017-consolidated-appropriations-bill

Text of the bill can be found HERE: https://rules.house.gov/sites/republicans.rules.house.gov/files/115/OMNI/CPRT-115-HPRT-RU00-SAHR244-AMNT.pdf

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David Carle: 202-224-3693