THE DAILY WHIP: WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 1, 2012

For Immediate Release:

August 1, 2012

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 - 2:00 p.m. 4:30 - 5:30 p.m.

**Members are advised that following last votes today, the House is expected to continue debate on bills listed for consideration under suspension of the Rules.  Any recorded votes requested will be postponed until tomorrow.  

H.Res. 747 – Rule providing for consideration of both H.R. 8 – Tax Cuts for the Wealthy Act (Rep. Camp – Ways and Means/Budget) and H.R. 6169 – Pathway to Debt Act (Rep. Dreier – Rules) (One Hour of debate) The Rules Committee has recommended a Rule that provides for consideration of two separate bills.

For H.R. 8 the Rules Committee has recommended a structured Rule that provides for one hour of general debate equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Ways and Means. The Rule allows one amendment in the nature of a substitute offered by Mr. Levin or his designee, debatable for 20 minutes and allows one motion to recommit, with or without instructions. It also waives all points of order against the legislation.

For H.R. 6169 the Rules committee has recommended a structured Rule that provides for one hour of general debate equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Rules, and two hours of debate equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Ways and Means. The Rule allows one amendment in the nature of a substitute offered by Ms. Slaughter or her designee, debatable for 20 minutes and allows one motion to recommit, with or without instructions. It also waives all points of order against the legislation.

The Rules Committee did not make in order several Democratic amendments regarding the estate tax. Additionally, the Rule allows for Suspension Authority through Thursday, August 2 and allows the Republicans to adjourn for the month of August with no opportunity to bring critical issues to the floor like middle class tax relief, the farm bill, postal reform, violence against women reauthorization, and legislation to deal with fiscal issues, including sequestration. Members are urged to VOTE NO on H.Res. 747.

H.R. 8 – Tax Cuts for the Wealthy Act (Rep. Camp – Ways and Means/Budget) (One Hour of debate) H.R. 8 extends the 2001 and 2003 Bush tax cuts for all taxpayers for one year through 2013. It also would provide a two-year patch for the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) through 2013 and extend the current estate tax level's $5M exemption amount and 35% rate through 2013.

The Bush tax cuts that would be extended include marginal income tax rates for even the highest incomes, keeping the top rate at 35 percent, and a 15 percent rate for dividends and capital gains.

If they were able to make these tax cuts permanent, the average income tax cut for households  making more than $1 million a year would be $74,505 in 2013 and would rise to $188,407 by 2021. At the same time, this bill would allow some tax cuts for working families first passed in 2009 to expire, raising taxes on 25 million of these taxpayers.

This tax legislation shows that House Republicans’ priority is protecting tax cuts for the wealthiest 2% and that they are willing to hold tax cuts for the middle class hostage unless they have their way. The Republican bill is a far cry from what most Americans and small businesses are asking for: an extension of rates on income below $250,000, which will cover 98% of families and 97% of small businesses. 

The very wealthiest have gained the vast majority of income growth in recent decades, with 93 percent going to the top 1 percent in 2010. The Republican plan is to give billions more in tax cuts while middle class wages stagnate and families struggle to recover from the deep recession.

Extending tax cuts for the middle class is something Democrats and Republicans agree on, and it is something that ought to pass both houses of Congress easily.  It is unfortunate that House Republicans continue to insist on ‘my way or the highway’ when it comes to protecting tax cuts for the very wealthy. The GOP proposal would raise taxes on 25 million working families – adding insult to injury for those still struggling in a tough economy while Republicans continue blocking legislation that would create jobs and give our economy a boost.

Instead of spending time on a bill that has already been rejected by and cannot pass the Senate and the President has already threatened to veto, Republicans should agree to pass the middle class tax cuts on which both parties agree, and which have already passed the Senate. Members are urged to VOTE NO.

The Rule makes in order only the following amendment, debatable for 20 minutes, equally divided between the offeror and opponent.

Rep. Levin Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute (Democratic Alternative) (20 minutes). The Democratic Substitute to H.R. 8 is identical to the version that passed the Senate last week. It extends for one year, through 2013, expiring marginal tax rates for income as well as rates on capital gains and dividends for taxable income of $200,000 or less for single filers and $250,000 or less for joint filers. It also extends various other tax provisions, including marriage penalty relief, expanded child and earned income tax credits, education tax incentives, and small business expensing all for one year, through 2013, and a patch for the Alternative Minimum Tax for 2012. The bill does not take a position on the Estate Tax.

All taxpayers will benefit from tax cuts on income up to these thresholds, and 98% of Americans and 97% of small businesses will see no tax increase under the Democratic Substitute. Democrats and Republicans agree on the need to extend the tax cuts for the middle class. The Democratic Substitute reflects that consensus, and gives middle class families certainty that their taxes will not go up next year. The middle class should not be held hostage while debating the merits of another tax cut for the wealthy.

House Republicans’ priority is protecting tax cuts for the wealthiest 2%. While insisting these taxpayers receive their tax cut, the Republican bill also would terminate the expanded Child Tax Credit, Earned Income Tax Credit, and eliminate the American Opportunity Tax Credit, increasing taxes on the 25 million Americans who benefit from them by an average of $1,000. The Democratic Substitute would prevent these tax increases on working families.

Instead of spending time on a bill that has already been rejected by and cannot pass the Senate and the President has already threatened to veto, Republicans should agree to pass this middle class tax cut, which passed the Senate last week, without delay. Members are urged to VOTE YES on the Democratic Substitute.

Bill Text for H.R. 8:
HTML Version

PDF Version

Background for H.R. 8:
CRS Report
– An Overview and Comparison of Proposals to Extend the "Bush Tax Cuts"

Suspensions (10 Bills)

  1. House Amendment to Senate Amendment to H.R. 1905 - Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012 (Rep. Ros-Lehtinen – Foreign Affairs)
  2. H.Con.Res. 127 – Expressing the sense of Congress regarding actions to preserve and advance the multistakeholder governance model under which the Internet has thrived (Rep. Bono Mack – Energy and Commerce)
  3. H.R. 4273 – Resolving Environmental and Grid Reliability Conflicts Act of 2012 (Rep. Olson – Energy and Commerce)
  4. H.R. 897 – Residential and Commuter Toll Fairness Act of 2011 (Rep. Grimm – Transportation and Infrastructure)
  5. H.R. 5797 – Mille Lacs Lake Freedom To Fish Act of 2012 (Rep. Cravaack – Transportation and Infrastructure)
  6. H.R. 3158 – Farmers Undertake Environmental Land Stewardship Act (Rep. Crawford – Transportation and Infrastructure)
  7. H.R. 1171 – Marine Debris Act Amendments of 2012 (Rep. Farr – Transportation and Infrastructure)
  8. H.R. 2446 – RESPA Home Warranty Clarification Act of 2011 (Rep. Biggert – Financial Services)
  9. H.R. 3187 – March of Dimes Commemorative Coin Act of 2011, as amended (Rep. Dold – Financial Services)
  10. H.R. 4104 – Pro Football Hall of Fame Commemorative Coin Act, as amended (Rep. Renacci – Financial Services)

Postponed Suspensions (14 Votes)

  1. H.R. 4365 – To amend title 5, United States Code, to make clear that accounts in the Thrift Savings Funds are subject to certain Federal tax levies (Rep. Buerkle – Oversight and Government Reform)
  2. S. 300 – Government Charge Card Abuse Prevention Act of 2011, as amended (Sen. Grassley – Oversight and Government Reform)
  3. H.R. 4073 – To authorize the Secretary of Agriculture to accept the quitclaim, disclaimer, and relinquishment of a railroad right of way within and adjacent to Pike National Forest in El Paso County, Colorado, originally granted to the Mt. Manitou Park and Incline Railway Company pursuant to the Act of March 3, 1875 (Rep. Lamborn – Natural Resources)
  4. H.R. 3706 – To create the Office of Chief Financial Officer of the Government of the Virgin Islands, and for other purposes (Rep. Christensen – Natural Resources)
  5. S. 270 – La Pine Land Conveyance Act (Sen. Wyden – Natural Resources)
  6. S. 271 – Wallowa Forest Service Compound Conveyance Act (Sen. Wyden – Natural Resources)
  7. H.R. 1950 – To enact title 54, United States Code, “National Park System,” as positive law, as amended (Rep. Smith (TX) – Judiciary)
  8. H.R. 3120 – Student Visa Reform Act (Rep. Lofgren – Judiciary)
  9. H.R. 6029 – Foreign and Economic Espionage Penalty Enhancement Act of 2012  (Rep. Smith (TX) – Judiciary)
  10. H.R. 6063 – Child Protection Act of 2012 (Rep. Smith (TX) – Judiciary)
  11. H.R. 4362 – STOP Identity Theft Act of 2012 (Rep. Wasserman Schultz – Judiciary)
  12. H.R. 3796 – Adam Walsh Reauthorization Act of 2012, as amended (Rep. Sensenbrenner – Judiciary)
  13. H.R. 6062 – Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program Reauthorization Act of 2012 (Rep. Marino – Judiciary)
  14. H.R. 1550 – Federal Law Enforcement Recruitment and Retention Act of 2011, as amended (Rep. Pierluisi – Judiciary)

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK
The GOP Leadership has announced the following schedule for Thursday, August 2: The House will meet at 12:00 p.m. for legislative business. The House is expected to consider H.R. 6169 – Pathway to Debt Act (Rep. Dreier – Rules).  The House is also expected to consider H.R. 6233 - Agricultural Disaster Assistance Act of 2012 (Rep. Lucas – Agriculture) – under suspension of the Rules.

 
The Daily Quote

“One needs but a glance at Tuesday night's vote to impose a ban on late-term abortions in only the District of Columbia to understand why Rep. Steven LaTourette (R-OH) abruptly announced his retirement from the House of Representatives this week… But for an nine-term veteran like LaTourette, this vote crystallized all that's wrong with Congress. ‘So we now we've voted 33 times to repeal Obamacare...anybody in our district who doesn't know where we are on the Second Amendment and right to life and Obamacare is not paying attention,’ said LaTourette. ‘It's time to quit making political statements and posturing and get something done.’”

-     Fox News, 8/1/12