House and Senate pass bill to reopen government, extend debt limit

16 days into the government shutdown and just hours before the United States would not be able to pay its bills; a bill to reopen the government and raise the debt ceiling is headed to President Obama’s desk.

The Senate passed the bill 81 to 18. Later, House members passed the bill 285 to 144.

The bill is a short-term one. It funds the government until January 15, 2014, when the government will run out of money again. It also raises the debt ceiling until February 7, 2014. A House and Senate committee would be created by the middle of December to negotiate a budget.

As for Obamacare, which was at the center of the shutdown because of some Tea Party members wanting to delay or defund the law, there is a minor change requiring income verification for people receiving health care subsidies from the government.

Many members of both parties and even President Obama pointing out, there is still work to do.

“I’ve got some thoughts in how we can move forward in the remainder of the year and stay focused on the job at hand, because there’s a lot of work ahead of us, including our need to earn back the trust of the American people that’s been lost over the past few weeks. And, we can begin to do this with addressing the real issues that they care about,” said President Obama.

President Obama says he also hopes Congress works on immigration, a farm bill, and a long term budget plan before the end of the year.

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