House passes bill to restore death benefits

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Associated Press

Posted on October 9, 2013 at 2:05 PM

Updated Wednesday, Oct 9 at 2:06 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The partial government shutdown has halted death benefits to the families of fallen soldiers, but the House has now voted unanimously for legislation that would restore those benefits.

It's unclear if the Democratic-led Senate will take up the bill, which the House passed by a 425-0 vote.

The Pentagon typically pays out $100,000 within three days of a soldier's death. But it says the shutdown means there's no authority now to pay the money.

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, has blamed the Obama administration for withholding the payments. But White House spokesman Jay Carney says Republicans are at fault for shutting down the government.

Carney says President Barack Obama was "disturbed" to learn of the problem and that the administration hoped to find a solution Wednesday.

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