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Senate ready to approve spending bill

Washington (AP) -- The Senate is ready to give final approval to a $1.1 trillion package financing federal agencies this year.

The measure is a bipartisan compromise that all but eliminates the specter of an election-year government shutdown. After several years of intense standoffs regarding the budget, many lawmakers want to leave such fights behind them -- at least for now.

Senate passage was expected as early as Thursday.

Wednesday, the Republican-run House passed the legislation in a 359-67 vote that underscored how both parties could claim wins in the measure. Of those voting no, 64 were Republicans -- including many of the chamber's most conservative members.

The legislation is a line-by-line follow-up to the budget compromise Congress approved in December that set overall spending limits for the next two years.

 
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