Congress has passed a bill to keep the federal government open through December 20. U.S. Senator Roy Blunt, R-Missouri, supported the measure and Senator Josh Hawley, R-Missouri, opposed it.

The U.S. House passed the proposal on Tuesday.

U.S. Capitol dome courtesy of the U.S. House

The legislation would also include a 3.1% military pay raise, funding for U.S. census efforts and extends controversial surveillance programs to March.

During a press conference on Capitol Hill this week, Blunt says many things are on hold until the funding issue is resolved.

“Defense is critical, but there are lots of other things in this appropriations process that are waiting to see if we’re going to fund the government, at what level we’re going to fund the government, and whether we’re going to move toward the future or just wait for the future come to us,” says Blunt.

Blunt says the National Institute of Health needs funding for important research, like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

“The one percent of that amount that we put into research isn’t nearly as effective if you get it three months into the year as it would be if you got it at the first of the year. It’s even less effective if you get it five months into the year,” says Blunt.

President Donald Trump signed the proposal shortly after.

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