Posted: Friday, 20 December 2013 5:02AM

Bipartisan Compromise Ends Senate Deadlock



iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- A bipartisan agreement will allow the Senate to wind up its business Friday and not stay through the weekend, Senate aides told ABC News Thursday night. The agreement brakes the partisan deadlock that had threatened to keep the Senate in session all night and into the weekend.

The deal appears to be a truce to the escalating battle between Democrats and Republicans over confirmation votes. The fight had consumed the Senate, with Democrats and Republicans accusing one another of trying to hold up Senate business. 

In the end, the threat of working the weekend before the Christmas holiday was too much for either side to bear.

The deal includes final approval for a defense bill and the confirmation of several presidential appointees Friday morning. After that, Senators can head home for the holidays.

Thursday night the Senate approved the National Defense Authorization Act with a vote of 84-15.

The bill now heads to the president's desk for a signature. It authorizes $552 billion in national defense spending and nearly $81 billion for overseas contingency operations.

The measure also includes historic reforms to how the military handles sexual assaults. But one of the most publicized items, Sen. Kirsten's Gillibrand's proposal to remove the chain of command from prosecutions of military sexual assaults, is not included in the bill.

The Senate's final confirmation of Janet Yellen as the next Chair of the Federal Reserve will be put off until the Senate returns in January.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio 


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