THE DAILY WHIP: THURSDAY, JULY 28, 2011

For Immediate Release:

July 28, 2011

Contact:

Katie GrantDaniel Reilly, 202-225-3130

House Meets At: First Vote Predicted: Last Vote Predicted:
10:00 a.m.: Morning Hour
12:00 p.m.: Legislative Business

Fifteen “One Minutes” per side

1:00 - 1:30 p.m. 6:00 - 7:00 p.m.
**Members are advised that bills listed for consideration under suspension of the Rules will be debated after last votes. Any recorded votes requested will be postponed.
 
H.Res. 375 - Rule providing for consideration of S. 627 – Speaker Boehner’s Short Term Default Act (amending the Faster FOIA Act of 2011) (One hour of debate) The Rules committee has recommended a completely closed Rule that provides two hours of general debate with 1 hour equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Rules, 30 minutes equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Ways and Means and 30 minutes equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Budget. The Rule makes in order no amendments and allows one motion to recommit. It also waives all points of order against consideration of the bill.
 
The Rule self-executes two provisions upon adoption of the Rule: it makes in order the amendment to S. 627 and replaces the text of the FOIA bill with Speaker Boehner’s short-term debt limit increase. It also self executes an amendment to the first provision that would remove some of the outlay calculations so the Republicans appear to achieve a higher spending reduction number according to the Congressional Budget Office. It would also create a new point of order against a measure that violated spending caps set forth in the legislation.
 
The legislation also contains a provision that allows the House to consider any bill under suspension of the Rules from now through Sunday, July 31. It provides that any Constitutional Amendment relating to a balanced budget can be brought up in that time.
 
It also provides for the House to have pro forma sessions during August in order to block recess appointments, and provides that no votes can be called during the August recess.
 
This closed Rule is an abuse of process. It does not allow Members even 24 hours to read the amendment that is self executed in the Rule, despite repeated promises of 72 hours notice before a vote on any legislation. This is in direct violation of House Rules. It also provides that an Amendment to the Constitution can be brought up at any time with little notice. The Rules committee rejected a motion by Ms. Slaughter to consider one of the most important matters in this Congress under an open Rule.
 
S. 627 – Speaker Boehner’s Short Term Default Act (amending the Faster FOIA Act of 2011) This bill provides for a short term debt limit increase, which will allow for a similar stand-off in just a few months. It provides a second increase to the debt ceiling contingent on enactment of recommendations from a 12 member joint committee of Congress which produce $1.6 trillion in additional deficit reduction. It would require passage by Congress of the committee’s reported legislation by December, 23, 2011.
 
This bill caps FY2012 discretionary budget authority at $1.043 trillion. FY2013 budget authority would be capped at $1.047 trillion. Budget authority would rise steadily over the subsequent eight years to $1.234 trillion in FY2021. It triggers automatic across-the-board cuts if those caps are exceeded. Therefore, the bill would initially cut under $1 trillion over the next 10 years and allows the President to request an increase in the debt ceiling by $900 billion immediately. 
 
It also requires the House and Senate to vote on a balanced budget amendment. According to the Rule, the House could take up multiple versions of a balanced budget Constitutional amendment as early as tomorrow.
 
Short-term proposals risk further uncertainty and the potentially damaging downgrade of the U.S. credit rating. House Republicans continue to walk away from negotiations while insisting that the budget be balanced on the backs of seniors and the middle class. While Democrats support deficit reduction, we support doing so in a balanced way that provides certainty to the economy.  This is yet another example of the Republicans taking a “my way or the highway approach.”
 
Continue consideration of H.R. 2584 - Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, FY 2012 (Rep. Simpson – Appropriations) H.R. 2584 makes appropriations for the department of the Interior and other related agencies and programs. It appropriates at a level that is $2.086 billion, or 7 percent, below the FY 2011 appropriations level and $3.818 billion, or 12.7 percent, below the President's request.
 
This bill makes many dangerous reductions, including an 18 percent cut to EPA’s budget, on top of the 16% cut already imposed on the EPA during this fiscal year. These cuts would be a huge blow to air and water programs at both the Federal and State level. It also includes many policy riders that the GOP forced into the bill. For example, it would prohibit funds for the Endangered Species Act (ESA) listings and critical habitat designations. This bill includes dozens of policy riders that have nothing to do with deficit reduction, but more to do with pursuing an ideological agenda.
 
The House completed general debate of H.R. 2584 on Monday, and finished reading through page 104 of the bill last night. The following amendments have recorded votes pending:
 
Blackburn (TN) Amendment. Relating to a reduction in the State and Tribal Assistance Grants
Richardson (CA) Amendment. Increases funding for state pollution control and prevention grants by $5 million and reduces funding for the Capitol Improvement and Maintenance fund by the same amount
Lankford (OK) Amendment (#1).  Relating to a strike of 30 percent or less
Gosar (AZ) Amendment. Relating to an increase to the National Forest System/Collaborative Forest Landscape Restoration program and reducing funds for Wildland Fire Management
Lankford (OK) Amendment (#2). Relating to reducing funding for reception and representation expenses for the Council on Environmental Quality
Broun (GA) Amendment. Relating to decreasing the Smithsonian salaries and expenses account
Walberg (MI) Amendment. Relating to reducing funding for the National Endowment for the Arts
 
Bill Text for H.R. 2584:
HTML Version
PDF Version    
Background for H.R. 2584:
 
Suspensions (8 bills)
  1. H.R. 2548 - To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 6310 North University Street in Peoria, Illinois, as the "Charles 'Chip' Lawrence Chan Post Office Building” (Rep. Schock- Oversight and Government Reform)
  2. H.R. 2244 - To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 67 Castle Street in Geneva, New York, as the "Corporal Steven Blaine Riccione Post Office" (Rep. Hanna - Oversight and Government Reform)
  3. H.R. 2213 - To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 801 West Eastport Street in Iuka, Mississippi, as the "Sergeant Jason W. Vaughn Post Office" (Rep. Nunnelee - Oversight and Government Reform)
  4. H.R. 789 - To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 20 Main Street in Little Ferry, New Jersey, as the "Sergeant Matthew J. Fenton Post Office" (Rep. Rothman - Oversight and Government Reform)
  5. H.R. 1975 - To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 281 East Colorado Boulevard in Pasadena, California, as the "First Lieutenant Oliver Goodall Post Office Building" (Rep. Schiff - Oversight and Government Reform)
  6. H.R. 1843 - To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 489 Army Drive in Barrigada, Guam, as the "John Pangelinan Gerber Post Office Building” (Rep. Bordallo - Oversight and Government Reform)
  7. H.R. 2062 - To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 45 Meetinghouse Lane in Sagamore Beach, Massachusetts, as the "Matthew A. Pucino Post Office" (Rep. Keating - Oversight and Government Reform)
  8. H.R. 2149 - To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 4354 Pahoa Avenue in Honolulu, Hawaii, as the "Cecil L. Heftel Post Office Building" (Rep. Hanabusa - Oversight and Government Reform)
Postponed Suspension Votes (2 Votes)
  1. H.R. 2056 - To instruct the Inspector General of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation to study the impact of insured depository institution failures, and for other purposes, as amended (Rep. Westmoreland - Financial Services)
  2. H.R. 440 - To provide for the establishment of the Special Envoy to Promote Religious Freedom of Religious Minorities in the Near East and South Central Asia (Rep. Wolf - Foreign Affairs)
TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK
The GOP Leadership has announced the following schedule for Friday, July 29: The House will meet at 9:00 a.m. for legislative business. The House may consider at least one Balanced Budget Constitutional Amendment.
 
The Daily Quote
“The unthinkable is finally becoming reality for U.S. companies, who are beginning to take real steps to prepare for the possibility of a U.S. debt default. While companies generally expect Washington to resolve the debt-ceiling impasse at the last moment, they are lining up extra sources of financing, and carefully husbanding cash just in case a deal falls through. All the uncertainty comes just as businesses were starting to spend some of their record piles of cash. The confusion is also giving them another reason to delay hiring and investment.”
 
-     The Wall Street Journal, 7/27/11