Deal reached to avoid default and open government - 19 Action News|Cleveland, OH|News, Weather, Sports

Deal reached to avoid default and open government

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With just hours to go before the US couldn't borrow any more money to pay its bills, Congress ended its budget stalemate. Senators have a compromise to raise the debt limit and re-open the government.. now it's waiting for a vote.

Lawmakers shuttled through the halls of the Capitol fine tuning a last minute deal to raise the nation's debit limit and end the partial government shutdown.  Shortly after noon Wednesday, Senate leaders made it official.

"It's never easy for two sides to reach consensus. It's really hard. Sometimes harder than others. This time was really hard," said Sen. Harry Reid (D) NV.

‘This has been a long challenging few weeks, for the Congress and the country," said Mitch McConnell (R) KY.

The Senate deal re-opens the government -- and keeps it funded for 3 months.
It raises the debt limit for nearly 4 months.

The deal still needs to pass both houses of Congress.. or the country risks default. House Speaker John Boehner needs at least 17 Republicans to vote yes.

Tea Party Republicans fought to use this legislation to delay or defund the President's health care law.. but in the end got neither.

Texas Senator Ted Cruz- led the charge - but says he will not delay a vote.

"Had Senate Republicans united, and supported House Republicans, the outcome would have been very very different," said Sen. Ted Cruz (R) TX.

White House applauded the Senate compromise.

"Calling on both houses of Congress to act swiftly," said Jay Carney, White House Spokesperson.

The bill does make one change to the health care law - requiring those seeking subsides for insurance coverage lower to verify their income.

The White House does not know how quickly government agencies will be back up a running after Congress votes, but says the idea will be to get tens of thousands of furloughed federal workers back on the job as soon as possible.

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