WASHINGTON (AP) - The government reopened its doors Thursday after a battle-weary Congress approved a bipartisan measure Wednesday to end a 16-day partial shutdown and avert the possibility of an economy-jarring federal default.
President Barack Obama signed the measure early Thursday, ending a brawl with Republicans who tried to use the must-pass legislation to mount a last-ditch effort to derail Obama's landmark health care law and demand concessions on the budget.
The impasse had shuttered national parks and mostly closed down NASA and the Environmental Protection Agency. Critical government functions went on as usual, but the closure and potential default weighed on the economy and spooked financial markets.
Obama and his Democratic allies were the decisive winners.
Standard & Poor's estimated the shutdown has taken $24 billion out of the economy.
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