December 10th, 2009
03:32 PM ET
9 months ago

U.S. House passes $447 billion government spending bill

Washington (CNN) - The House of Representatives on Thursday passed a $447 billion spending bill that funds several Cabinet departments and other agencies for the 2010 budget year - money needed to keep government funded after next week.

The omnibus bill, which combined six separate appropriations measures for 2010, passed on a 221-202 vote with no Republican support. It would succeed an existing resolution funding the federal government that expires on December 18.

It also authorizes about $600 billion in mandatory federal spending on government programs such as Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, funding that is set by formula and cannot be altered by Congress.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the spending legislation included measures to help create jobs by expanding small-business access to capital and credit, and investing in infrastructure development and clean energy. She called it fiscally responsible, noting it was "below the president's budget request."

"In these tough budgetary times, we have made tough choices," said Pelosi, D-California.

The bill would fund non-defense government agencies, including the Transportation Department, State Department, Veterans Affairs, Department of Commerce and Department of Justice, for the fiscal year that started October 1. A separate defense spending bill will be considered next week, Pelosi said.

Republicans denounced the bill as bloated with wasteful spending, with House Minority Leader John Boehner saying, "We're broke," and arguing it was time to cut spending.

"When are we going to say enough is enough?" Boehner said.

According to the independent, non-partisan group Taxpayers for Common Sense, the spending bill includes 5,244 earmarks that total just under $4 billion in federal spending. It now goes to the Senate for its approval.

Among its many provisions, the bill would allow the government to transfer suspected terrorists now held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to the United States to stand trial, and allow passengers on Amtrak trains to check guns.

It also would provide auto dealers closed down under the General Motors and Chrysler restructuring an opportunity to be reinstated. The bill sets up a binding-arbitration process for dealers to present evidence on why the car companies should re-open their dealerships.

Updated: 7:08 p.m.


Filed under: House
soundoff (61 Responses)
  1. Paul from Phoenix

    We have only used 20% of the $800 billion emergency spending bill. Why not use those funds?

    HOW MUCH DEBT ARE WE GOING TO INCUR?????????????

    December 10, 2009 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  2. Dave Holmes

    You have to be kidding me right? Republican politicians crack me up. They keep repeating "We're broke, we're broke". Everyone knows that, and everyone knows that the Republican politicians are the reason we're broke! Do they think accusing the new administration of over spending will get them off the hook? The more they keep talking about overspending, the more they remind me... It's their fault we're in this mess! I would lay low for about 2 decades if I were responsible of messing up America, but they insist on reminding us.

    December 10, 2009 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  3. mjm

    What was the $787 for again? Add that to the $447 billion.

    "Pelosi also called the omnibus bill fiscally responsible, noting it was "below the president's budget request." "

    I'd hate to see what happens if they weren't fiscally responsible.

    December 10, 2009 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  4. ran

    How about we start by cutting ever Republican elected official seeing they are not for anything else except tax relief/bail outs for the rich.

    People please vot for either a true Democrate or Independent 2010/2012 and say to the Republicans enough of the hate/fear/obstructionism.

    December 10, 2009 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  5. Second Week of Advent- symbolic of Peace and Bethlehem,birth of Our Savior

    I'll take the assumption that Chinnese authorities at the top are peeking into CNN's site:

    Please show your mercy and release GOA ZHISHEN from prison and torture.....Goa is a Human Rights lawyer arressted defeding house churches. It's time to make laws for the protection of believers.

    December 10, 2009 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  6. Eric in Denver

    Do the democrats think that money grows on trees? The reckless spending is destroying our country. I don't care if you are a democrat, republican, or independent this irresponsible behavior has to bother you. Let's vote out these jokes that truly don't care about us.

    December 10, 2009 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  7. Jill, California

    Where was Boehner and company when Bush was in office, and spending like a drunken sailor? Please..... The Republicans are going to say no to everything this Administration wants. The party of no...yeah, that's who they are.

    December 10, 2009 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  8. Chicago Mob

    If you were carrying massive personal household debt would you not take this seriously and tighten your belt and do everything you could to cut back on spending. The dems just don't care. We are approaching a point where the debt is so great we will not be able to repay it. They want to put us in that position to weaken us and remove us from Super Power status.

    December 10, 2009 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  9. Randolph Carter, I'm no expert but...

    Hey, neoclowns, "destroying our country" was last weeks catchphrase. Get with the program and spout this week's trite meme or Rush'll sit on you. Have a nice day! XOXO

    December 10, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  10. Independent Bob

    This is a great example of Congress not even obeying the laws it passes for itself. By law Congress is suppossed to pass 13 appropriations bills by NLT 30 SEP of each year. Congress has been notorious about not obeying their own law. Who is held accountable? No one! Does that make all of them criminals? They must have ensured there were no enforcement provisions and thus can just ignore it as they please.

    Something is wrong with this picture.

    December 10, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  11. Sniffit

    "the bill would allow the government to transfer Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detainees to the United States to stand trial,"

    Well, at least we know the real reason the GOPers opposed it.

    December 10, 2009 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    "the bill would allow the government to transfer Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detainees to the United States to stand trial,"

    Well, at least we know the real reason the GOPers opposed it, because in light of their behavior over teh past decade while in absolute control of teh country, their constant yammering about the budget and deficit is hardly credible to anyone with a brain in their head. How about we get some more of those tax cuts for the rich, eh GOPers?? Or maybe another 3 decades of applying your inane trcikle-down Randian economic theories while average middle-class salaries fail to keep pace with inflation? Hmmm? Morons.

    December 10, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  13. Reaganomics Leads To Feudalism

    John Boehner keeps saying "We're broke, we're broke..."

    OK...let's talk about WHY we're broke:

    1. All the lost income tax revenue due to George W. Bush's tax cuts for people who already have way too much money.

    2. A trillion dollars WASTED on an unnecesary invasion and occupation of a foreign country that had absolutely NOTHING to due with 9/11, and posed absolutely NO threat whatsoever to the national security of the United States of America.

    When are WE going to say enough is enough?

    No more costly tax cuts for millionares!

    No more costly unnecesary wars!

    December 10, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  14. Always a Conservative

    More money America doesn't have. Obama is a big joke amonst other things you can't say on here. Although if you are the democratic thug named Grayson it's all ok. He is pathetic as is the rest of the democratic party.

    December 10, 2009 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  15. Marc

    It's funny (not much but it is) to see Republicans posting about Obama's 'lust for spending' as they put it. If it was McCain or when it was Bush that was alright, but O-BA-MA? A democrat? Oh no! It's filled with pork, it's wasteful spending , it's... yadda-yadda...
    Not much, but it is funny.

    December 10, 2009 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  16. Sniffit

    Two words: Veterans Affairs

    Grayson had it right, but Cheneybot's not the only one who needs to take his advice. Hearing me Boehner et al?

    December 10, 2009 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  17. Sniffit

    "If you were carrying massive personal household debt would you not take this seriously and tighten your belt and do everything you could to cut back on spending. The dems just don't care. "

    If I was carrying massive household debt, the one thing I would NOT do is cease paying my bills, feeding my kids and working on the upkeep of my household. THAT is what this bill does. It pays salaries, funds pensions, takes care of our veterans, etc. The GOP is just a grandstanding gaggle of glorified grousers.

    December 10, 2009 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  18. Mark

    Spend like out an out of control left wing liberal!!

    December 10, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  19. Laura, Boston MA

    I supported the dems in 2008 but I am beginning to wonder why I did! I can't believe all the massive spending. Do any of these people have children? Don't they know that it is the next generation who will be saddled with the results of all the government spending.

    I voted for change...this is not the change I had in mind.

    December 10, 2009 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  20. randy1234@hotmail.com

    Half a Trillion here........ A trillion there........... Pretty soon the fed will really be spending my money. The scary thing that people need to realize is that if we don't make money to be taxed or spend money to be taxed, they can just print it. Wish I could do that.

    December 10, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  21. Laura, Boston MA

    I supported the dems in 2008 but I am beginning to wonder why I did! I can't believe all the massive spending. Do any of these people have children? Don't they know that it is the next generation who will be saddled with the results of all the government spending.

    The bloggers on this site keep saying the republicans are the party of no...Well maybe that is not so bad...someone has to say no to a party whose main goal is to grant every entitlement know to man. That is not being the party of no, that is being smart.

    I voted for change...this is not the change I had in mind.

    December 10, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  22. Rickster

    I've got to believe this is a softball being lobbed to Obama so he can veto it and then claim to be concerned about the debt. Even as dumb as I believe Obama is, I can't imagine that he will spend yet another half a trillion dollars. Or is he and the democrats even dumber than I believed?

    December 10, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  23. Marc

    Perhaps the GOP wants that the USA goes back to those days in 1995 (or 96), when the US government suddenly found itself with no money and had to shut down everything around the country. Remember?

    December 10, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  24. Kevin in Ohio

    Spend spend spend then tax tax tax. This is all the democrats know.

    December 10, 2009 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  25. I support the President

    "The spending measures fund the Transportation Department, State Department, Veterans Affairs, Department of Commerce, Department of Justice and other departments and agencies. It is for the government's fiscal year 2010, which started October 1."

    And yet NOT ONE Republican voted for it???? Republicans are IDIOTS, plain and simple. How the He!! do you people expect the country to keep functioning if we don't spend any money??!!! And there's the answer . . . .Republicans want to make the country fail.

    December 10, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
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