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Senate Passes Massive Spending Deal to Avert a Brief Government Shutdown

The Senate has passed a massive, bipartisan budget agreement and spending bill to reopen the shuttered federal government.

The bill now moves to the House.

Senators voted 71-28 to approve the deal, easily overcoming objections from Republican fiscal conservatives who say the bill marks a return to unchecked deficit spending.

The bill stalled in the Senate Thursday night when one of the opponents, Sen. Rand Paul, refused to allow a speedy vote.

Paul’s protest forced Congress to miss a midnight deadline for passing a funding measure to keep the government operating.