Delaware Democrats try to strong-arm GOP over budget impasse

 (Paul Parmelee/WHYY, file)

(Paul Parmelee/WHYY, file)

Democratic lawmakers tried unsuccessfully to strong-arm Republicans late Thursday as an impasse over a budget for the fiscal year starting Saturday continued to escalate.

Amid public criticism and partisan bickering over a decision by the Democratic-led budget committee Wednesday to zero out spending for an annual package of grants to nonprofit groups, community agencies and volunteer fire companies, Democrats drafted a bill to both restore that funding and increase personal income taxes to pay for it.

Bypassing the joint House-Senate committee that is charged with writing the grants budgets, Democrats held a House appropriations committee meeting, which lasted only a few minutes, and released the bill to the floor.

Republicans walked out of the House chamber before Democrats suspended rules and voted on the bill, which failed without GOP support.

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