Two Republican senators are holding up work on a $984 billion bill that would prevent a government shutdown and keep agencies funded through the end of the fiscal year.
Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) on Tuesday blocked the Senate from proceeding to debate on the bill, arguing they were not given enough time to read the 500-page legislation.
The two also said they had already found “pork barrel spending” in the measure, negotiated by Senate Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) and ranking member Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.).
“What we have found is egregious pork barrel spending,” McCain said. “I hope in next few hours we’ll be able to finish examining the bill, but what we’ve found is so egregious … frankly it’s beyond anything I have ever seen in my years in the United States Senate.”
It is unclear how long McCain and Coburn intend to hold up the legislation.
McCain said the two initially sent a letter to Democratic leaders asking for 72 hours to review the measure. But on the floor, McCain suggested in a conversation with Mikulski that he could have the bill read within 12 hours.
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