On Tuesday, the Senate overwhelmingly passed a massive spending bill that funds the Defense Department and the Labor, Education, and Health and Human Services Departments for fiscal 2019 and also keeps the entire government open through Dec. 7, averting a government shutdown before the midterm elections. The House is expected to take up the measure next week, but because it does not include the money President Trump wants for his border wall, it is unclear if Trump will sign it. The government will partially shut down on Oct. 1 if Trump doesn't sign a stopgap spending bill.
The legislation the Senate passed 93 to 7 provides $606.5 billion for the Pentagon and $178 billion for Labor, Education, and HHS. Together, that accounts for more than 60 percent of discretionary spending. If the House approves and Trump signs the bill, Congress can wait to pass the seven remaining spending bills — out of 12 — by Dec. 7. Along with its stopgap spending measure, the Senate's Defense, Labor, Education, and HHS bill reauthorizes the Violence Against Women Act until Dec. 7 and orders the Department of Homeland Security to submit a plan to Congress to reunite separated migrant families. Peter Weber