Washington (CNNMoney.com) - On a 69 to 30 vote, the Senate Wednesday approved a $219 billion measure to keep the government operating until December 3.
The bill would fund the budget just $9 billion shy of current levels, due to savings in Census Bureau funding and military base closings. Most other government agencies and programs will be funded at current rates.
Now the bill goes to the House, which is expected to vote later Wednesday.
If Congress doesn't pass the funding bill, the federal government would shut down on Friday, which is the first day of fiscal year 2011. And that would have been hard for lawmakers to defend when they leave town this weekend to campaign for the November 2 midterm elections.
Why can't Congress pass a budget? I know it's complicated but if they spent more time on their jobs and less time fooling around they could actually get things done.