Avoiding FAA Shutdown, Senate Clears FAA & Highway Bill

Sep 15, 2011 7:02pm

The Senate has officially passed the FAA/Highway bill by a vote of 92-6, to temporarily fund the Federal Aviation Administration and federal highway, transit and highway safety programs, which means  the FAA will not shut down Friday and the bill goes to President Obama’s desk for signature.

 After the vote, the Democratic leadership hailed the passage, narrowly avoiding a shutdown after Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., held the Senate in a stalemate the latter half of this week over a portion of the highway bill.

 ”This is really a good day for the American people,” Senate Minority Leader Reid, D-Nev., said after the vote. “About 2 million people are breathing a sigh of relief,  because they are going to have jobs on Monday.”

 Reid said that Coburn in the end “feels more comfortable about what we’re doing in the future with the highway deals,” so agreed to not stand in the way of the bill’s passing.

Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., one of the key negotiators who helped make a deal for  Coburn to drop his objections to the highway bill said her raspy voice came from talking so much to  Coburn today.

“We could have seen a protracted debate,” Boxer said, “we showed today that we can in fact work together.”

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