(NBC NEWS) -- The House passed a year-end budget compromise Thursday night with
overwhelming bipartisan support, but the bill faces a surprisingly
uncertain path in the United States Senate.
While aides still believe the modest measure to avoid future
government shutdowns will eek through to passage, the deal brokered by
Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., and Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., is running into
unexpected opposition from some of the chamber's usual negotiators.
the past, it's been easier to move major legislation through the Senate
than through the more unpredictable House. But it's not yet safe to
assume that the Murray-Ryan budget agreement is going to get to the
president's desk without a fight.
Defense hawks, such as Sens. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., and Lindsey
Graham, R-S.C., are concerned about the plan's cost-of-living
adjustment reductions for some military retirees.
surprise to backers of the deal, who believed they would get support
from these compromise-minded military hawks because the proposal saves
the Pentagon from another round of sequestration cuts that are planned
"I truly appreciate Congressman Paul Ryan and Senator
Patty Murray for their work trying to write a budget that provides
relief to the Department of Defense," said Graham, who is up for
re-election in 2014. "But this agreement doesn't do enough to protect
those who have spent their lives protecting our nation."
isn't universally loved by Democrats, either. Many are concerned about
cuts to pensions for federal workers and worry that the measure doesn't
extend unemployment insurance.
While Senate Majority Leader Harry
Reid has kept his members in line on almost all major votes, there are
some signs of unhappiness with this proposal - and any Democrat who
wants to vote "no" would require another Republican "yes."
rancor that's consumed the chamber in the past few days isn't helping.
The Senate was in session overnight for two straight days now as
Republicans protest Reid's change to the filibuster rules, although
leaders have reached a deal to avert weekend votes and advance to work
on pending policy measures by Tuesday.
The budget agreement is expected to come to the floor early next week.
By Kasie Hunt and Carrie Dann, NBC News