|House Meets At:||First Vote Predicted:||Last Vote Predicted:|
9:00 a.m.: Legislative Business
|10:00 - 11:00 a.m.||2:00 – 3:00 p.m.|
H.Res. 648 – Rule providing for consideration of H.R. 5652 - “Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act of 2012.” (One Hour of debate) The Rules Committee has once again recommended a closed Rule that provides for two hours of debate equally divided among the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Budget. The Rule provides for one motion to recommit, with or without instructions and waives all points of order against the legislation.
Despite repeated promises of openness by the Republican Majority, the Rules committee would not make in order the Democratic substitute authored by Rep. Van Hollen.
H.R. 5652 - “Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act of 2012” (Rep. Ryan – Budget) (Two Hours of debate) The bill makes spending reductions in programs under the jurisdiction of six committees totaling over $300 billion over the next 10 years, tens of billions more than instructions contained in the GOP Budget that was passed earlier this year. These reductions are meant to replace $78 billion of the looming $110 billion sequester required in the Budget Control Act (BCA) for Fiscal Year 2013, protecting defense programs while keeping in place many of sequestration’s cuts to domestic programs including Medicare.
The measure accomplishes this goal set forth in the GOP Budget by reducing SNAP funding by over $30 billion, ending the Prevention and Public Health Trust Fund, reducing the Federal Medicaid match to states, enacting stricter eligibility standards for Medicaid, CHIP and the Child Tax Credit, and repealing the Social Services Block Grant. It would also eliminate the FDIC’s ability to unwind financial institutions that are “too big to fail” in an orderly way, eliminate the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) funding source, cut federal workers’ take-home pay, and cap certain damages in medical malpractice lawsuits while establishing a statute of limitations for filing health care cases.
House Republicans are using the fast-track procedures provided under budget reconciliation to expedite passage of some of their budget resolution’s most extreme priorities. This bill makes cuts to critical safety-net programs that millions of Americans rely on while returning to policies that sparked the recession. The spending cuts coming through the Republican reconciliation instructions and the sequestration of spending scheduled under the Budget Control Act are neither the right nor only ways to reduce the deficit. Democrats have proposed to achieve greater deficit reduction from balanced policy choices, rather than the cuts-only approach taken by the Republican reconciliation proposals.
This bill is not a serious proposal to reduce the deficit. The Senate has not agreed to reconciliation in any form, so this reconciliation bill will not be considered in that Chamber and has no chance of becoming law. In addition, Republicans have left revenue and defense spending completely off limits in this bill. Democrats agree on the need to take serious action to reduce the deficit and replace sequestration, but simply targeting critical programs that millions of Americans rely on is not the way to do so. The country needs a balanced deficit reduction plan that calls on all Americans to pay their fair share. Members are urged to VOTE NO.
Bill Text for H.R. 5652:
Background for H.R. 5652:
CRS Report - Reconciliation Directives: Components and Enforcement
Complete Consideration of H.R. 5326 – Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2013 (Rep. Wolf - Appropriations) H.R. 5326 appropriates approximately $51.1 billion in discretionary spending, which is $1.6 billion (3%) less than the current level and $731 million (1.4%) less than in the Senate and President’s request. The measure increases funding for the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Standards and Technology but slightly reduces funding for NASA. It also cuts funding for grants to state and local law enforcement agencies by 17% while providing increases for most federal law enforcement agencies. House Republicans are developing this year's spending bills based on the $1.028 trillion discretionary spending cap included in the Republican (Ryan) Budget Resolution rather than the $1.047 trillion cap agreed upon in last year's Budget Control Act. As a result, this bill leaves even less room for other agencies and programs down the road, as Republicans try and ‘frontload’ some of the appropriations bills while still fitting under their cap.
In addition, H.R. 5326 provides $73 million for the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program, which is $126 million (63%) less than the current level and $217 million (75%) less than requested. The bill only provides $40 million out of the $73 million for the COPS hiring program, which provides assistance to state and local law enforcement agencies.
As of last night, the House had finished consideration of all amendments to the bill. Votes on the Democratic motion to recommit and final passage will occur today.
|The Daily Quote|
“House conservatives will be holding their noses as they vote for legislation to replace defense cuts slated for 2013 on Thursday, with one member denouncing the bill as a piece of ‘election-year grandstanding.’ The deficit-reduction package that House Republican leaders are bringing to the floor restores $72 billion in cuts to the Pentagon and domestic budget contained in the debt-ceiling deal Congress approved last summer… The GOP measure goes well beyond replacing the sequester and includes $315 billion in cuts to social programs, including food stamps, as well as to the 2010 healthcare and financial regulatory laws.”
- The Hill, 5/9/12