US senator ends marathon 21-hour speech against spending Bill
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Democratic-led Senate was on a path on Wednesday to passing a Bill to prevent a government shutdown while protecting United States President Barack Obama's health care law, despite a conservative senator's attempt to block the effort by talking all night and into the morning.
At issue is a temporary spending legislation required to keep the government fully open after the Oct 1 start of the new budget year. The Republican-controlled House of Representatives sent the Senate a version of the Bill with a provision that would defund the health-care law, trying to seize the opportunity to dismantle Mr Obama's signature domestic accomplishment.
But the Senate is all but certain to return it to the House as a straight-forward funding Bill stripped of the health-care provision. The question is whether the House will approve that version of the legislation or risk a partial government shutdown.
The issue has roiled the Republican Party, exacerbating the divide between hard-right conservatives and more moderate party leaders who fear Republicans will get blamed if the government shuts down.