The Senate voted 67-33 Tuesday to advance the Ryan-Murray budget compromise that conservatives oppose as fiscally irresponsible.
Helping Democrats get the votes they needed, 12 Republicans voted with all 55 Democrats to begin debate on the measure.
Republicans joining Democrats to invoke cloture include Lamar Alexander (Tenn.), Roy Blunt (Mo.), Saxby Chambliss (Ga.), Susan Collins (Maine), Jeff Flake (Ariz.), Orrin Hatch (Utah), John Hoeven (N.D.), Johnny Isakson (Ga.), Ron Johnson (Wis.), John McCain (Ariz.), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), and Rob Portman (Ohio).
The two-year deal will ease the mandatory spending caps (sequester) imposed by Congress in 2011. This will allow a $63 billion increase in the discretionary budget, but it does nothing to reform entitlement programs, which are the main drivers of growing deficits and debt, The Heritage Foundation reported.
The deal also raises certain “fees,” or taxes.
A simple majority is needed for passage, which is expected to happen later this week.
Speaking on the Senate floor after the vote, Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) said the deal breaks a promise made to taxpayers in 2011 to curtail spending