Saturday, January 28, 2017

2017 Outlook

Ryan maps out GOP timeline for ObamaCare, tax reform
PHILADELPHIA — Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) on Wednesday mapped out the GOP’s 200-day legislative strategy, saying Republicans will repeal and replace portions of ObamaCare by spring and tackle tax reform before the August recess.

Ryan: GOP will replace Obamacare, cut taxes and fund wall by August
PHILADELPHIA — House Speaker Paul Ryan on Wednesday outlined a packed legislative agenda for this year in which Republicans would repeal and replace Obamacare by April, fund Donald Trump’s border wall shortly after that and approve a sweeping tax reform package by August.

Republicans set aggressive agenda on health care, regulations and tax reform
PHILADELPHIA — Republican leaders laid out an aggressive legislative agenda Wednesday that would have Congress repeal major portions of the Affordable Care Act, pass replacement measures and embark on a major tax code overhaul, all within the first 200 days of blanket GOP control in Washington.

Trump takes control of GOP agenda
President Donald Trump told House Speaker Paul Ryan he "liked" the Republicans' 200 day agenda that includes repealing and replacing Obamacare and overhauling the tax code. But he told Ryan something was missing. Trump asked lawmakers to include the massive infrastructure spending project that he promised voters during the campaign. Now it's been added to the GOP's already packed to-do list, outlined at the Republican retreat at a hotel in downtown Philadelphia. It's not clear whether it will match Trump's $1 trillion proposal for repairing the nation's crumbling roads and bridges, but infrastructure is now "front and center," according to those who heard details of the GOP plan.

Congress Next Week

Senate Chamber

Floor Schedule

Program for Monday: After the transaction of any morning business (not to extend beyond 5 p.m.), Senate will resume consideration of the nomination of Rex W. Tillerson, of Texas, to be Secretary of State, with a vote on the motion to invoke cloture thereon at 5:30 p.m.

McConnell to force vote on Trump's State Department pick
"I'll be filing cloture on Secretary of State nominee [Rex] Tillerson, which will ripen next week," McConnell told reporters during a weekly press conference. The move would set up a procedural vote early next week and get Tillerson through the Senate by the end of the week.

House Chamber

Weekly Schedule

Monday & Tuesday: Suspension Votes

Wednesday - Friday: Activity Under the Congressional Review Act

Text of Bills for the Week of Jan. 30, 2017

House to launch attack on Obama energy regs next week
The House will launch an attack Monday on former President Barack Obama's midnight regulations targeting the coal and natural gas industries, using powers extended to it under former President Bill Clinton for Congress to unravel specious federal rules.

Republicans to kill U.S. rules on corruption, environment, labor and guns next week
Congressional Republicans are set to overturn a slew of Obama-era regulations next week, including a controversial anti-bribery rule aimed at U.S. resource companies such as Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM.N) and Chevron Corp (CVX.N), according to a top lawmaker. Other rules eyed for quick overturning by Congress include newly minted environmental, gun control and labor relations measures, sources said. Under the Congressional Review Act, Congress can use simple majority votes to stop recent regulations in their tracks. The timing in the law means that any rules that became final after May 31 could go on the chopping block.

Congress Last Week

Chamber Activity

Congressional Record — January 23-27, 2017

House voted 238-183 to pass H.R. 7, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion & Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act of 2017.

House votes to cut abortion funding permanently
The law would codify the Hyde Amendment and close loopholes in Obamacare

House passes major abortion bill | Washington Examiner
The legislation, which passed 238-183, would make the Hyde amendment permanent. The amendment, which has been added to spending bills for decades, bans any federal funding from being used to provide abortions. In addition, it would target Obamacare plans that cover elective abortions. It would not provide Obamacare customers with subsidies used to pay down the cost of insurance if the insurance plan covers abortions.

House votes to permanently ban taxpayer funds for abortion
“That’s what we should be all about. Life affirming and the saving of human life,” said Smith. It does allow exceptions for cases of rape, incest or if the mother’s life in danger. The three Democrats who voted for the legislation were Reps. Henry Cuellar (Texas), Daniel Lipinski (Ill.) and Collin Peterson (Minn.).

The bill would also permanently prohibit the District of Columbia from using its local funds approved by Congress for abortion services.

Senate confirmed the nomination of Mike Pompeo, of Kansas, to be Director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

U.S. Senate confirms Pompeo to be Trump's CIA director
Sixty-six senators backed Pompeo and 32 voted against. All the opposition was from Democrats, except for Senator Rand Paul, a leading Republican advocate for strict control of surveillance. Shortly afterward, Pompeo was sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence.

Senate confirmed the nomination of Nikki R. Haley, of South Carolina, to be the Representative of the United States of America to the United Nations.

U.S. Senate confirms Haley as Trump's U.N. ambassador
The U.S. Senate voted almost unanimously on Tuesday to confirm South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley as ambassador to the United Nations, sending a rising Republican star to represent President Donald Trump at an institution he has criticized. Haley was backed by 96 senators, with only four opposed.

Senate confirms Trump's UN ambassador
Haley appeared to share her commander in chief's skepticism about America's heavy burden of United Nations dues, using the committee hearing to question if American values are reflected by a group that recently voted to condemn Israel for building of settlements in the West Bank. The Israel vote has drawn backlash from lawmakers in both parties.

Legislation Introduced

States Could Keep Obamacare Under Cassidy-Collins Replacement
State legislatures would be able to choose, in 2018, whether to continue to support the insurance market and institutions put in place by former President Barack Obama’s law, or to opt into a new system with many of the same consumer protections but fewer regulations. Under the new system, insurance coverage would be much less comprehensive but likely would be cheaper.

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