It also includes an increase in authorization for spending on construction on the lower Ohio River in Illinois and Kentucky. The bill increases it to $2.918 billion.
The Senate Conservatives Fund quickly called that language the "Kentucky Kickback," and said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) secured that as the price of his support for the bill. Taxpayers for Common Sense says the bill would increase total authorized spending by $1.2 billion.
Senate staffers were still scrambling to piece the bill together for votes in the House and Senate Wednesday night. Lawmakers hope to get it to President Obama’s desk before Thursday’s deadline for raising the debt ceiling.