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House Democrats oppose highway program extension

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) – Facing an end-of-the-week deadline, House Republicans are running into trouble passing a bill to temporarily keep federal highway and transit aid flowing to states.

Democrats are opposing a 90-day extension of highway aid. They are trying to keep pressure on the GOP to take up a bipartisan, $109 billion Senate bill that would overhaul transportation programs while extending them through the end of the 2013 federal budget year.

Instead, Republicans want to pass a three-month extension to buy more time to line up votes for their five-year bill.

The Democratic opposition could prevent passage of the GOP’s short-term extension in a vote later Monday. A two-thirds vote is necessary under House rules that allow expedited consideration of bills. Without an extension, construction projects across the country could be shutdown.

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