Black in Tennessee for budget vote; would've voted 'no'

AP

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Republican U.S. Rep. Diane Black's office says she wasn't in Washington to vote on the recent $400 billion budget deal because her "no" vote wouldn't have prevented passage and her time was better spent meeting with business leaders in Tennessee.

On Friday, the congresswoman's spokeswoman, Heather Douglass, said Republicans went in a different direction than the budget she helped craft.

Douglass said Republicans cut a deal with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Democrats to spend hundreds of billions of dollars on inefficient and wasteful government programs.

Black, three other Republicans and one Democrat didn't cast votes on the measure that passed early Friday, ending an hourslong government shutdown.

Black, who stepped down as Budget Committee chairwoman last month, is one of four major Republicans running for governor of Tennessee. Two Democrats are also running.

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