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Senate hits 1000th day without a budget while Obama preps for SOTU

Published: Tuesday, Jan. 24 2012 7:47 a.m. MST

Workers rearrange chairs as preparations are made for President Barack Obama's State of the Union address tomorrow at the US Capitol in Washington, Monday, Jan., 23, 2012.

Associated Press

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In a business where timing is everything, on the day President Barack Obama takes to Capitol Hill to give his State of the Union address, the Senate also hits the 1000-day mark in its failure to pass a budget.

While the House, controlled by Republicans since the 2010 midterm elections, passed a budget on April 15, 2011, the Senate, controlled by Democrats, has not passed a budget since April 29, 2009.

According to the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, it is essential that Congress pass a budget to assure effective congressional control over the budgetary process, to determine appropriate levels of federal revenues and expenditures and to establish national budget priorities. As per the law, the Senate Budget Committee is required to report the concurrent resolution on the budget by April 1, and Congress is supposed to complete action on the current resolution on the budget by April 15.

"If the president wishes to begin a genuine dialogue with the American people in tomorrow's State of the Union address, then he must hold his own party accountable for its dogged refusal to produce a plan to prevent this crisis and lift this cloud of uncertainty from the economy," Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., and Paul Ryan, R-Wis., write for National Review Online. "The president must also deliver what he has so far refused: serious reforms to change our debt course and prevent fiscal disaster."

Since 2009, when the Senate last passed a budget, the world has seen tragedy, triumphs and losses, with events including:

Michael Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor and Steve Jobs died

Lady Gaga became famous

The iPad was released

The iPad 2 was also released

The tea party grew and developed from its January 2009 beginnings

Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan were sworn in as Supreme Court justices

Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize

A gunman killed 13 in Fort Hood shooting

Kidnap victim Jayee Dugard was found alive after 18 years

A Nigerian attempted to bomb a U.S. plane on Christmas day

Haiti was hit by a devastating 7.0 earthquake

Obama signed his health care law

The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico was set off by an explosion on an offshore rig

10 Russians were expelled from the U.S. after accusations of spying

Wikileaks released reams of U.S. documents

33 miners in Chile were rescued from a collapsed mine

Republicans gained control of the House of Representatives

Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. Navy SEALs

Prince William and Kate Middleton got engaged — and married

Brett Favre retired, and then retired again

Rep. Anthony Weiner resigned after tweeting an inappropriate photo

Tiger Woods apologized for infidelity and took an "indefinite break" from golf.

Tiger Woods returned to golf.

In May 2011, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said it would be "foolish" for Democrats to propose their own federal budget for 2012, The Los Angeles Times reported at the time. Democrats don't plan to produce a budget this year either, Politico reports.

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