Congress returns to Washington today to confront a series of fiscal challenges in crafting a continuing resolution (CR) to keep the government open past Sept. 30. The most pressing issue for Republican leaders at the moment is keeping a Planned Parenthood defunding mechanism out of the short-term spending extension. But the length of the CR itself will set the tempo for how Congress approaches a slew of other issues this fall. In addition, both houses are expected to hold votes opposing the president's agreement with Iran. The president now has the 34 votes needed to override a veto, should he receive legislation that he would oppose, but he does not yet have the votes to block legislation from leaving the Senate, i.e. the opposition has the 60 votes needed to prevent a filibuster.
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