Today on the Hill: McConnell Eyes Procedural Vote on Defense, Labor-HHS-Ed Bills

Senators are continuing work on a four-bill minibus containing fiscal year (FY) 2020 spending bills for Agriculture, Interior-Environment, Commerce-Science-Justice, and Transportation-HUD. After adopting an amendment that would designate $5 million of the Agriculture Department's appropriated funds to be used for a loan program to help farmers resolve land ownership issues, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) filed cloture to end debate on the spending package late yesterday. A final vote on the measure is expected on Wednesday or Thursday of this week.

Additionally, Leader McConnell stated that the upper chamber would take a procedural vote on the Senate’s second spending package later this week. The second minibus is expected to include the Senate’s spending bills for Defense and Labor-HHS-Education — measures that have been opposed by Senate Democrats over “poison pill” issues such as border security and family planning. The motion to proceed is not expected to pass absent support from the minority.

In the House, lawmakers will take up a resolution out of the Foreign Affairs Committee that affirms the United States record on the Armenian Genocide. The lower chamber will also consider a Foreign Affairs suspension bill that would impose sanctions on Turkey.