The Policy Moves in the Budget Deal


After all the debate over a handful of policy "riders" in the shutdown-averting budget deal reached last Friday, some little-talked-about measures have made it into the final bill.

Congressional appropriators finalized the specifics of a six-month funding deal Monday night, after the White House, House Republicans, and Senate Democrats reached a "framework" agreement on Friday. The bill is online and has been submitted to the House Rules Committee, meaning it will likely see a vote on Friday.

Republicans did not manage to defund Planned Parenthood or ban the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gases, but they did include the following measures, according to a summary document released by Republicans on the House Appropriations Committee.

Here are the policy moves included in the final bill:

  • Guantanamo detainees would be barred from being transferred to U.S. soil for any reason, and the Obama administration is barred from constructing or modifying any detention center in the U.S. to house detainees. This follows a similar policy included in the last Defense authorization bill, which President Obama signed.
  • A climate-science initiative would be blocked, as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) would be banned from establishing a "Climate Service." NOAA had requested funds to do so; the service, as advertised on NOAA's Web site, would "provide a reliable and authoritative source for climate data, information, and decision support services to more effectively coordinate with other agencies and partners."
  • NASA and the Office of Science and Technology would be banned from engaging in bilateral activities with China.
  • The District of Columbia would be banned from using federal and local funds for abortions. It is already illegal to use federal funds to pay for abortions, under language known as the Hyde Amendment, which is renewed every year in spending bills.
  • The deal would defund various Obama administration "czars" -- for health care, climate change, the auto industry, and urban affairs. The Washington Post reports that all of these positions are vacant anyway.
  • Wolves would be delisted from the Fish and Wildlife Service's endangered list in states with approved management plans -- meaning, according to a House aide, Montana and Idaho.
  • While Planned Parenthood wouldn't be defunded, Title X funding would be reduced to FY 2008 levels.
  • Millions of acres of undeveloped land would be ruled ineligible for federal wilderness protection, as NPR reports.
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Chris Good is a political reporter for ABC News. He was previously an associate editor at The Atlantic and a reporter for The Hill.

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