Congressional leaders are ignoring dismal approval ratings and a legislative stalemate on pivotal issues facing the nation, deciding to give themselves a hefty $12.6 million raise in their new omnibus spending bill.
While the $1.3 trillion spending package fails to fund the President’s proposed border wall or find a permanent solution to DACA, the new legislation incudes over $12 million in higher wages for those on the Senate’s payroll.
According to the official summary released by the Senate, the budget increase will be used to provide “funding necessary for critical modernization and upgrades of the Senate financial management system and investments in IT security.”
The legislation also provides increased funding for various Capitol projects, including nearly $14 million for the “Botanic Garden.”
Despite clearing both Houses of Congress, President Trump threatened to veto the legislation early Friday morning; slamming the bill for failing to fund his border wall and find a permanent solution for DACA-recipients.
“I am considering a VETO of the Omnibus Spending Bill based on the fact that the 800,000 plus DACA recipients have been totally abandoned by the Democrats (not even mentioned in Bill) and the BORDER WALL, which is desperately needed for our National Defense, is not fully funded,” Trump tweeted.
DEMS DITCH DREAMERS: Dems BACK AWAY from DACA PLEDGE Ahead of Budget Talks
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer are backing away from previous pledges to include ‘Dreamer’ protections in any upcoming budget negotiations; signaling their flexibility on finding a DACA solution ahead of the bipartisan discussions.
According to the Hill, the Democratic leaders are reversing course from promises made just weeks ago when they vowed to include a permanent DACA fix in any budget resolution heading into 2018; now urging both parties to “drop contentious” policies buried in the bill.
“I think that’s probably the best policy for us to do,” said House Democratic Whip Rep. Steny Hoyer. “It’s also politically the most feasible way to get an omnibus passed.”
“Our best leverage is 90 percent of the American people — 87 percent — think this ought to be done,” he added.
Not all Democrats are pleased with the decision, with outspoken immigration advocate Rep. Luis Gutierrez of Illinois blasting the decision, saying “We need a budget or spending measure that includes the Dream Act.”
BLUE STATE BLUES: New Jersey Governor to RAISE TAXES on ‘EVERYTHING’
The Democratic Governor of New Jersey Phil Murphy unveiled his vision for the state’s proposed budget Wednesday; raising taxes on “everything” in a bid to save the Garden State from ballooning debt and massive budget deficits.
Murphy -the liberal politician who replaced outgoing governor and presidential nominee Chris Christie- plans to fund the state’s record-setting $37.4 billion budget by increasing taxes on nearly everything, including: gambling, ride-sharing services, marijuana, tobacco, online sales, retail sales, and more.
The budget also increases spending for education, transportation services, and state-wide pension funds.
“If we enact another budget like the one our administration inherited, our middle class will continue to be the ones shouldering the burden, while seeing little in return,” Murphy said Tuesday. “A millionaire’s tax is the right thing to do… and now is the time to do it.”
“The proposal, 4.2 percent higher than the current fiscal year’s, relies on a tax for the wealthiest that has yet to be approved and lacks support from key Democrats in the legislature,” writes Bloomberg. “It also reverses pledges from Murphy’s predecessor, Republican Chris Christie, to lower taxes in a state where living costs are among the nation’s highest.”