Societies urge Congress to develop a bipartisan budget deal

In addition to a delayed appropriations calendar, Congress has to deal with the spending caps on discretionary spending set by the Budget Control Act. While many members of Congress support increased defense spending, Democrats are demanding parity – increases in defense spending should be matched by increases in non-defense spending. In order to raise these spending caps, a bipartisan budget deal would need to be developed. ASA, CSSA and SSSA, along with hundreds of other scientific and university groups, signed on to a coalition letter urging Congress to pass a bipartisan budget agreement that increases the spending caps for both defense and non-defense discretionary programs. Whether or not there is the time and political will to get a deal crafted is still very much unknown. Many observers predict that Congress will need to extend 2017 funding levels well into the 2018 fiscal year before legislators reach final agreement on the 2018 appropriations process.