Senate moves toward completion of Sandy aid bill

Senate moves toward completion of $60.4 billion Sandy aid package

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Senate is moving towards completion of a $60.4 billion aid package for victims of Hurricane Sandy.

Democrats on Friday had to turn back GOP efforts to cut programs such as $150 million in fisheries aid that Republican lawmakers said was unrelated to the storm that hammered the East Coast late in October.

The bill faces uncertain prospects in the House, where GOP leaders appear reluctant to move quickly on a big spending bill in the final days of a lame duck session. Lawmakers' attention is focused on talks over the so-called fiscal cliff of tax hikes and automatic spending cuts set to begin next year unless a compromise is worked out.

Senate Republicans want a smaller package of about $24 billion in aid.

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