Lawmakers are returning to Washington next week to confront an impasse over funding bills that threatens to cause a government shutdown, something Republican leaders want to avoid at all costs.
Senators will immediately square off over funding to combat the Zika virus, with aides expecting a replay of what happened in June, when Democrats blocked a GOP-authored bill they said would unfairly block money for Planned Parenthood.
Democrats say that in some areas of the country such as Puerto Rico, a territory, Planned Parenthood is the place women can go to get treatment for a sexually transmitted disease affecting a fetus.
Also on the Senate schedule for next week is a bill funding the Department of Defense, which Democrats also plan to block.
“We don’t want a defense bill to pass by itself but leave other bills that have security funding for the Department of Homeland Security, FBI and the CIA on autopilot,” said a senior Democratic aide.
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