Trump signs stopgap bill to avoid U.S. government shutdown

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks while hosting an event commemorating the repatriation of Native American remains and artifacts from Finland in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, U.S., September 17, 2020. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

(Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump signed a stopgap funding bill on Thursday that would keep the federal government open through December 11, the White House said in a statement.

Trump signed the measure into law shortly after government funding ran out at midnight.

The law would maintain current funding levels for most programs, avoiding a government shutdown in the middle of a pandemic just weeks ahead of the Nov. 3 presidential election.

It would also give lawmakers more time to work out budget details for the fiscal year that ends on Sept. 30 2021, including for military operations, healthcare, national parks, space programs, and airport and border security.

On Tuesday, the Senate voted 82-6 on a procedural motion to advance the temporary funding bill.

The Democratic-led House of Representatives approved the measure a week ago after Democrats struck a deal with the White House and Republicans on farmers’ aid and nutritional assistance for children.

(Reporting by Aishwarya Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and Peter Graff)

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