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Obama: Spending bill vital to government workers, especially military

Obama: New spending bill important to lots of government employees - especially military

President Obama said Monday that the new government spending bill is important to U.S. troops and others serving the country and that he plans to sign the measure.

The $1.1-trillion proposal will keep the government running and even includes a hike in pay for military service members, Obama told a crowd at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey.

Obama said he would sign the measure because it contains “a pay raise for you” as well as “healthcare for our wounded warriors and our veterans.”

“You’ve always been there for us,” Obama said. “We’ve got to be there for you.”

Passage of the proposal ultimately pitted Obama against members of his own party. Liberal Democrats threatened to derail the funding package in the House before their president formed a surprise alliance with Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) to get it through.

Speaking at the military base on Monday, Obama made his case for doing so in the form of a holiday-season tribute to U.S. service personnel.

“We’re free and secure and safe over here, because you’re willing to serve over there,” Obama said. “Those are the precious gifts that you give America. … You never stop serving. You never stop giving.”

Obama is expected to sign the measure in the next couple of days.

For news about President Obama and the Obama administration, follow me on Twitter: @cparsons

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