President Obama signed the first regular appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2012 into law last Friday. The legislation was referred to as a “minibus” and combined three of the twelve regular appropriations bills: Agriculture, Commerce/ Justice/ Science, and Transportation/ Housing and Urban Development. Earlier last week, the House passed the bill with a 298-121 vote and the Senate approved it with a vote of 70-30.
Also on Capitol Hill last week, a proposal to add a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution failed in the House. In a 261-165 vote, the proposal fell short of the two-thirds majority required for a constitutional amendment.