Trump Expected to Sign $1.4 Trillion Spending Package to Avoid Shutdown: White House

December 17, 2019 Updated: December 17, 2019
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President Donald Trump is expected to sign a spending bill worth $1.4 trillion to avoid the pending government shutdown at the end of the week, said White House counselor Kellyanne Conway.

“The president is poised to sign it to keep the government open,” she told reporters on Tuesday.

The House is expected to vote on the measure on Tuesday, and the Senate will vote later on in the week. Congress needs to pass 12 appropriations bills by Friday to avoid a government shutdown.

Conway noted to reporters that $1.375 billion in the legislation will go toward the wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, which was one of Trump’s key 2016 campaign promises. That same issue triggered a shutdown at the end of last year which lasted for more than a month.

“A year after [Democrats] called it a manufactured crisis, the president is getting $1.375 billion for his wall, and they didn’t mess with his authorities at all,” Conway added. “There’s a lot of good stuff in there.”

border security
Recently-installed bollard style fencing on the US-Mexico border near Santa Teresa, N.M., on April 30, 2019. (Paul Rataje/AFP/Getty Images)

According to CNBC, the package also includes funding for a 3.1 percent increase in pay for military members and federal civilian employees, $25 million for gun violence research, a $22 billion raise in defense spending, $425 million for election security, and more.

“We are scaling up funding for priorities that will make our country safer and stronger and help hardworking families get ahead,” said House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.) told CBS News.

The largest expenditures in the bill are for the Department of Defense, which would get a total of $738 billion for this year, $22 billion more than last year. It does not include “mandatory” programs, such as Social Security and Medicare, which are funded separately. Some of the money would be used to harden infrastructure against cyber attacks following election meddling by Russia in 2016.

The legislation would repeal several taxes originally created to help fund the ACA, popularly known as Obamacare, that had been delayed or were only intermittently in effect.

The spending bill would also repeal the 2.3 percent tax on the sale of medical devices such as catheters and pacemakers. This drew opposition from bipartisan lawmakers who said it hurt innovation at medical device companies.

Most Democrats and some Republicans support a mix of improved physical barriers at the border, along with a combination of high-tech surveillance equipment and patrols by all-terrain vehicles and even horses.

Reuters contributed to this report.