Washington - The Senate cleared a legislative hurdle Thursday night when it passed a continuing resolution that funds the government through September. After significant debate on both sides of the aisle, a compromise was finalized and passed in the House earlier on Thursday. The bill reduces funding by $78.5 billion below the President's FY2011 request.

"We all agree that we have to reduce our nation's deficit. That requires difficult choices as we saw in 1993, when we last put our nation on a path to surplus. This bill includes historic spending reductions, and while I don't agree with all of the cuts, it does a much better job of protecting our nation's priorities than the more extreme Republican plan that was defeated earlier this year," Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) said, "This was not an easy decision, and there certainly are no easy options moving forward, but I believe we have a responsibility to put our nation back on a fiscally responsible path, through shared sacrifice and shared responsibility, while also protecting priorities that create jobs, educate workers to compete in a global economy, and continue to rebuild our economy."