03/12/2014 10:18 am ET Updated Mar 12, 2014

Taxpayers Help Fund Political Conventions. Congress Actually Wants That To End.

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The days of taxpayers footing the bill for lavish political conventions are one step closer to being over.

On Tuesday, the Senate unanimously approved H.R. 2019, also known as the Gabriela Miller Kids First Research Act. The bill would "eliminate taxpayer financing of political party conventions," and instead direct those dollars to a 10-year National Institutes of Health pediatric research initiative.

The House passed the same bill in December 2013, and it now heads to President Barack Obama's desk.

“The party is over for Washington politicians,” Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) said in a Tuesday statement. “Hardworking taxpayers will no longer have to fund summertime party junkets for the political class."

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) also hailed the passage, but pointed out to The Hill that as an authorizations bill, it will require Congress appropriating money for the cause.

“This is a small amount of money but it will be extremely helpful to the NIH,” Reid said. “I wish my Republican colleagues would join us in increasing funding for NIH.”

Read the full text of H.R. 2019 here.



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