WASHINGTON, D.C. (12/11/2013) – Lawmakers in the nation's capital are reacting to yesterday's budget deal that, if passed, will fund the federal government for the next two years.
On Wednesday, the chairs of the House and Senate Budget Committee, Republican Paul Ryan (WI) and Democrat Patty Murray (WA), announced they reached a two-year budget deal that would set spending at just over a trillion dollars for both 2014 and 2015.
It would also prevent another government shutdown in January, and help reduce the deficit by $23 billion dollars.
Republican Congressman Glenn Thompson (PA) said he supports the plan, and believes it will pass.
"It is a measured approach to move the country in the right direction, so I'm OK with it," Thompson said. "Everything I've read, it addresses the deficit, and it makes additional deficit cuts. It does not raise taxes."
One hot topic not addressed in Ryan and Murray's budget deal is the extension of federal emergency unemployment compensation benefits. These are the benefits that kick in after state benefits run out. The law that lengthened federal unemployment to 99 weeks is set to expire at the end of the year.
Many Republicans and Democrats are divided on this issue.
"I think the conference committee for the budget spoke by not taking action as taking action, and the fact that unemployment compensation has been extended so many times. Our goal needs to be putting people back to work," Thompson said.
Meanwhile, Democratic Congressman Dan Kildee (MI) is calling for an immediate extension of federal unemployment benefits, saying "Completely cutting unemployment compensation would reduce consumer demand and slow job growth…Congress should not adjourn until we extend emergency unemployment benefits for over a million Americans."
The House could vote on the budget bill as early as tomorrow. As of now, they are scheduled to wrap up their legislative year on Friday.