President Biden Signs Short-Term Funding Bill to Prevent Government Shutdown

by Megan Molseed

On Friday, President Joe Biden signed legislation dedicated to funding federal government operations in the short term, averting a potential government shutdown. The funding will continue through mid-March before it runs out. The purpose of the short-term bill is to ultimately buy time for a massive trillion-dollar funding bill to make it to the president’s desk. All of this came as the midnight shutdown deadline loomed just hours away.

Key Points

  • President Joe Biden signs temporary legislation in an effort to avert a looming government shutdown.
  • This legislation will hold the door open long enough as a more permanent funding bill worth trillions is on the way,
  • The upcoming bill passsed with bipartisan support and addresses funding needs required to continue through the current fiscal year.
  • Both legislations passed with bipartisan support. However, some there are some major changes to the original bill. These came just prior to the bills approval in the House and Senate.

President Biden Signs Temporary Funding Legislation Averting A Looming Government Shutdown

The legislation signed by President Joe Biden will be funding the federal government as a temporary stop-gap. The purpose of the temporary bill is to make a looming midnight deadline, at which time current funding would end. And, without funding, the government would be unable to operate effectively.

The resolution signed by Biden today, March 11 continues to fund the government expenditures through March 15. Experts note that these temporary funds are buying waiting for the completion of a larger, $1.5 trillion bill to fund the government. This bill is expected to hit the president’s desk by next week.

The New Bill Includes Billions For Ukrainian Aid

The Senate passed the continuing resolutions as well as the larger bill late Thursday night. The larger bill expected to reach the president next week will fund the U.S. government through September 2022.

The legislation also includes billions in funding earmarked for Ukraine aid. The 2.741-page bill includes as much as $13.6 billion in humanitarian and security assistance. This funding is included to specifically address Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

The Pending Legislation Passed Without Funding Dedicated to the COVID-19 Pandemic

The White House had originally included funding dedicated to programs born from the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the final draft passed without these funding points as House Democrats were unable to come to an agreement on the terms. The White House responds to these changes, however, warning that programs related to the pandemic will suffer without the approval of additional COVID-19 funding.

“We thank leaders in the House and Senate for their partnership in getting this bill done,” notes White House secretary Jen Psaki during a Thursday statement.

“And the President looks forward to signing it into law,” Psaki continues.

“At the same time, we continue to call on Congress to provide the funds urgently needed,” she adds. “To prevent severe disruptions to our COVID response.”