US House approves $259.5bn spending package

Seven Democrats and the chamber's sole Independent joined every Republican in voting against the measure.

Washington: The Democrat-controlled US House of Representatives has approved a $259.5 billion four-bill package of spending bills for the 2021 fiscal year, it was reported.

The package approved on Friday includes the bills for state and foreign operations; agriculture; interior and environment; and military construction and veterans affairs, said The Hill news report.

The legislative package passed in a mostly party-line 224-189 vote.

Seven Democrats and the chamber’s sole Independent joined every Republican in voting against the measure.

Meanwhile, the package would ensure funding for the World Health Organization, to which President Donald Trump has vowed to cut ties and financing for, blaming it for the spread of the coronavirus.

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It would also block Trump from using military construction funds to build his signature border wall, and refuse to backfill accounts he emptied to fund the wall using emergency powers.

This appropriations package addresses urgent national priorities,” The Hill news report quoted House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey as saying following the approval of the box.

“I am proud that the package also includes strong emergency appropriations to confront coronavirus and support economic recovery, with investments in critical infrastructure and coronavirus preparedness, response, and relief domestically and globally.”

The House is scheduled to take up another package next week of seven spending bills, including the controversial homeland security bill, which deals with immigration and border security.

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