U.S. Senate approves 1.4-trillion budget likely avoiding shutdown

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The U.S. Senate has passed a 1.4-trillion-dollar spending package that is expected to be signed into law by President Donald Trump.

The spendings bills – approved in two votes of 73-21 and 81-11 – come ahead of a Friday deadline to fund the government or face a shutdown.

Last year Republican lawmakers and Trump used the budget deadline as political leverage in a bid to get funding for Trump’s border wall with Mexico.

The stalemate over wall funding lead to the longest government shutdown in U.S. history at 35 days.

This year lawmakers across the partisan divide said they wanted to avoid a government shutdown and the 2020 funding bills include 1.4 billion dollars in funding for the border wall.

The massive spending bill provides government funding through September 2020.

It also raises the age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21 and provides 25 million dollars towards gun violence research.

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