Week of July 21, 2003

» Please view the "Weekly Whip" outlining the Floor Schedule for the week of July 21, 2003.

Floor items that you may want to do press on:

  • H.R. 2210 - School Readiness Act of 2003
  • H.R. ___ - Commerce-Justice-State Appropriations Bill for FY 2004
  • Motions to Instruct Conferees on the Child Tax Credit

Thanks to all who planned a "Prescription Drug Town Hall Meeting" in your District for Saturday, July 19th as a part of the HOUSE DEMOCRATS' NATIONAL DAY OF TOWN HALL MEETINGS.  Over 70 Members are participating tomorrow.  Please send any press clips generated by your town hall to Stacey Farnen in the Whip's office via email or via fax to 6-0663. Thank you.


H.R. 2210 - School Readiness Act of 2003

The Republican leadership pulled this ill-advised legislation from Floor consideration this past week because it likely would have suffered a very embarrassing defeat.  House Democrats were united against this bill, and we have every reason to believe that a significant number of Republicans believed this was a deeply flawed bill and were ready to oppose it.  However, the Republican leadership has announced that it will be brought to the Floor the week of July 21.  Please see below for background information on H.R. 2210.

H.R. 2210 is the Republican proposal to reauthorize the Head Start program, the landmark federal early childhood program that provides more than 900,000 low-income children with comprehensive educational, medical, dental, and nutritional services.  The Republican bill would turn a successful, federal-to-local program into a state-led experiment on low-income children.

Republicans want the public to believe their legislation won't harm the future of Head Start. But, their legislation and press releases on the reauthorization of the Head Start Act are filled with empty rhetoric and provide another example of the credibility gap between what they say and what they do.

Whether 8 states or 50, Title II of the Republican bill is a block grant that establishes no real system for ensuring quality, comprehensive services, accountability or performance.  It has been denounced by thousands of constituents, many editorial boards, dozens of groups, and all Democratic Members of the Education and Workforce Committee.

Please see the attached materials provided by the Education and Workforce Committee Democrats to help you do press in support of the Democratic principles on this legislation and in opposition to the Republican bill:

  • Statement of Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer regarding the Head Start bill being pulled
  • Fact Sheet
  • Outline of Democratic Principles
  • Summary of Key Problems with the Republican Bill
  • Myths and Facts

In addition, the Education and Workforce Committee Democrats are constantly updating the committee website with new information.

H.R. ___ - Commerce-Justice-State Appropriations Bill for FY 2004

The House Appropriations Committee adopted an amendment offered by Ranking Member Dave Obey to the FY 2004 CJS Appropriations Bill that would overturn the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) recent decision to increase the limits on corporate ownership of television stations.

Additional amendments may be offered on the Floor during debate on the CJS bill that are related to the new FCC media ownership rules.  Many Democrats have been outspoken on this issue, and this appropriations bill may present another opportunity to talk to your local media about the impact of the FCC's decision.

Please see the attached materials regarding the FCC ruling:

  • Press Release from Congressman David Obey regarding adoption of his amendment
  • June 2nd Statement from Congressman Hoyer regarding the FCC decision on media ownership
  • CRS summary of rule changes and link to CRS report

Motions to Instruct Conferees on the Child Tax Credit

House Democrats will continue to offer Motions to Instruct Conferees on the Child Tax Credit next week.

Please see the attached talking points from the Office of the Democratic Leader on the Child Tax Credit issue.

» View Attachments Bundled Together in a PDF File