THE DAILY WHIP: TUESDAY, APRIL 8, 2014

For Immediate Release:

April 8, 2014

Contact:

Katie GrantStephanie Young, 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”

2:30 – 3:00 p.m. 3:00 - 3:30 p.m.

**Members are advised that following last votes, the House will consider the first two hours of general debate on H.Con.Res. 96. The House is expected complete general debate and begin consideration of Budget Substitute Amendments on Wednesday.

H.Res.  544 – Rule providing for consideration of H.Con.Res. 96The Republican Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Resolution (Rep. Ryan (WI) – Budget) (One Hour of Debate). The Rules Committee has recommended a structured Rule that provides for four hours of general debate with three hours equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Budget and one hour equally divided between members of the Joint Economic Committee.

The Rule makes in order 5 amendments in the nature of substitutes, and waives all points of order against them. The Rule provides that adoption of an amendment in the nature of a substitute shall constitute the conclusion of consideration of the concurrent resolution for amendment. Members are urged to VOTE NO.

H.R. 1871 Baseline Reform Act (Rep. Woodall – Budget) (One Hour of Debate).This bill would change Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) rules for projecting the discretionary baseline. Currently, CBO assumes annual adjustments for inflation and population growth to reflect the cost of maintaining current services.  This bill would remove those adjustments, underestimating budget needs for future years, paving the way for additional tax cuts, that would become more attractive in the short-run.

Should this bill become law, CBO would be required to project appropriations well below even the Budget Control Act’s sequestration level, allowing Republicans to characterize these painful cuts as a “spending increase.”

Despite Republican claims, this bill does nothing to create a single job, to reduce the deficit by a single penny, or to put the country on a fiscally sustainable path. Instead, this bill would simply obscure the size of the fiscal problem facing us. 

The Rule, which was adopted last week, provides for a closed Rule and one hour of general debate.

Bill Text for H.R. 1871:
PDF Version

Background for H.R. 1871:
House Report (HTML Version)
House Report (PDF Version)

Begin Consideration of H.Con.Res. 96The Republican Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Resolution (Rep. Ryan (WI) – Budget). (4 Hours of Debate). The Republican Budget, submitted by Chairman Paul Ryan, contains $5 trillion in spending cuts, including cuts to nondefense discretionary appropriations of $791 billion below the Budget Control Act’s sequestration level and $1.3 trillion below the amount needed to maintain current services.  It would end the Medicare guarantee and turn it into a voucher program.  It would also pocket $732 billion by turning Medicaid into a capped block grant. The Republican Budget retains all of the roughly $2 trillion in savings from the Affordable Care Act, but repeals all the benefits, despite the fact that the law has withstood over 50 votes to repeal or undermine the law. It would make at least $125 billion in cuts to the SNAP program. The Republican Budget combines many of the same Republican policies rejected by the American people with magic asterisks designed to hide even more harsh policies required to make its numbers add up.

The Republican Budget continues to protect defense spending from sequestration, adding $483 billion to the Pentagon’s budget, while more than doubling sequestration’s nondefense reductions, cutting $791 billion beginning in FY16, after December’s two-year Bipartisan Budget Agreement ends.  That cuts nondefense funding by $1.3 trillion below the amount needed to maintain current services. It not only continues the “meat-ax” approach to reducing the deficit through discretionary cuts, but also claims $966 billion in “other mandatory” cuts while giving no specifics on what policies would be implemented to achieve a majority of those cuts. Many programs in this “other mandatory” category serve the needy and the disadvantaged, harming the people with the least means while asking nothing of the wealthy. 

The Republican Budget also proposes tax reform that would lower the top corporate and individual rates to 25% and repeal the AMT, which would together result in well over $3 trillion in lost revenue.  It claims to replace these trillions of dollars by eliminating tax preferences – but fails to name even one of them specifically.  These tax cuts for the wealthy would require raising taxes for the middle class to remain revenue neutral.  Further, despite repealing the Affordable Care Act, the Republican Budget cynically keeps over $2 trillion in savings – including the same Medicare savings Chairman Ryan criticized during his Vice Presidential campaign in 2012 – that comes from the law.  

The Republican Budget Resolution is very similar to the budgets that Republicans have proposed in recent years and the American people summarily dismissed each time.  It is once again not a serious document, avoids tough decisions, and forces the American people to play ‘fill in the blanks’ with the details.  It is an ideological, message document for hard-line conservatives that slashes investments in innovation, education, and infrastructure, which puts our economic recovery at risk and threatens American jobs.  It does not reduce the deficit in a responsible way, instead placing the burden of deficit reduction onto seniors, the middle class, working families, and the most vulnerable while refusing to ask the wealthiest among us to contribute.  It ends the Medicare guarantee; repeals the Affordable Care Act; harms domestic discretionary spending immensely, while increasing defense spending; and achieves deficit reduction on the backs of the middle class and seniors.  This budget rejects a big, bold, and balanced approach to reducing our nation’s deficit. Members are urged to VOTE NO on H.Con.Res. 96.

Bill Text for H.Con.Res. 96:
PDF Version

Background for H.Con.Res. 96:
House Report (HTML Version)
House Report (PDF Version)
Summary of Substitute Amendments

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK
The GOP Leadership has announced the following schedule for Wednesday, April 9: The House will meet at 12:00 p.m. for legislative business. The House is expected to continue consideration of H.Con.Res. 96 – The Republican Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Resolution (Rep. Ryan (WI) – Budget).

 
The Daily Quote

“The fate of expired unemployment benefits tied the Senate in knots for nearly four months. The response in the House: a nonchalant shrug. The bill’s not high on the House agenda this week, and it won’t be much higher when the House returns from a two-week recess at the end of the month. There is talk of amending the bill and sending it back to the Senate with provisions favored by Republicans — but even that seems to be on the back burner. That leaves the package in limbo, even as Democrats threaten to make it an election year issue — a threat doing little to spur House Republicans to action. ‘I don’t think there is a great sense of pressure on our members,’ said Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.), a House deputy whip... It’s a striking position, given that six Senate Republicans joined Democrats on Monday to pass legislation that extends the jobless benefits for five months... Some of those Republicans have urged House Speaker John Boehner to move on the legislation. But, for now, Boehner isn’t budging... Seven Republicans including Reps. Peter King of New York, Joe Heck of Nevada and Frank LoBiondo of New Jersey sent a letter to Boehner on Monday night, calling on the Ohio Republican to pass the Senate version, or a similar measure. ‘There are people who are hurting. People who are seriously trying to find work and can’t…’ King said."

-    Politico, 4/7/2014