With little fanfare Thursday, the Senate agreed to suspend the nation’s $16.4 trillion debt ceiling until May 19, postponing the specter of default that threatened the nation as early as February.
The vote was 64-34. It now heads to the White House for President Barack Obama’s expected signature.
It would also tie lawmakers’ salaries to whether their respective chambers pass a budget. If the House or the Senate do not pass a budget by April 15, the pay for members in that chamber will be held in an escrow account until they pass a budget or until the last day of the 113th Congress.
Senate Democratic leaders have said they will pass a budget this year—the first time since 2009.