WASHINGTON – Washington woke up to “Fallout Friday,” with liberal Democrats openly outraged at President Obama and conservative Republicans disgusted with House Speaker John Boehner after both did enough wheeling, dealing and arm twisting to push through a spending bill three hours shy of the midnight deadline.
The surprise beneficiary in this latest political conundrum could be Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., a relative newcomer to the Senate but looking more and more like the liberal Democratic answer to who might challenge Hillary Clinton for the party's 2016 presidential nomination.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said Friday morning that he hopes to take up and finish the omnibus bill as soon as possible but said getting it done would require cooperation from both sides of the aisle. Reid, speaking from the Senate floor, acknowledged there were some provisions he was not happy with but pitched it as a compromise nonetheless.
“We’re going to consider this legislation to keep our government open and funded and we’re going to do it today – I hope,” he said. He later warned, “There isn’t much time… government funding runs out on Saturday at midnight.”
The House narrowly approved a sweeping spending bill Thursday night despite deep misgivings among liberals and conservatives alike, sending the measure to the Senate as lawmakers averted a partial government shutdown.
The bill passed on a 219-206 vote, following an intense lobbying effort by House Republican leaders and the White House.
Current government funding technically runs out at midnight Thursday, but lawmakers late Thursday approved a stopgap measure to keep the government running through midnight Saturday as the Senate considers the main $1.1 trillion spending package. That debate could last through the weekend and potentially into Monday.