Dec 13, 2013 8:04 AM
The package would ease the harshest effects of automatic spending cuts set to hit the Pentagon and domestic agencies next month. It would not extend jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed. Senate Democrats are promising they'll force a vote on that issue when the chamber reconvenes next year.
Democrats who were upset that the bill does not extend jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed suppressed their doubts to advance the measure to the Democratic-led Senate, where Obama's supporters appear set to clear it next week for his signature.
A defense policy bill also is heading to the Senate. It aims to deal with the epidemic of sexual assaults in the military. The House passed the legislation Thursday on another strong bipartisan vote. But it could be slowed by Republican senators' outrage over their inability to offer any amendments to the massive bill.