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Congress Passes 2016 Budget

March 2015

This week, both chambers of the Congress passed a 2016 budget that aims to eliminate the federal deficit by proposing $5.5 trillion in cuts over ten years to Medicaid, the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), welfare programs and a repeal of the Affordable Care Act. The budget is non-binding and does not outline specific cuts at the program level, but instead provides a ten-year budget cap guide for congressional appropriations committees that draft individual spending bills for each of the 12 federal agencies. It does not require approval by the President. The measure was drafted by the House, which approved it in a party-line vote of 228 – 199. The Senate passed the bill early on the morning of March 27 by a vote of 52 – 46. There are differences between the House and Senate budget plans so the bills will go a House-Senate conference committee for reconciliation when Congress returns from a two-week recess in April.

Last Reviewed: October 2017