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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. 5:00 – 6:00 p.m.

**Members are advised that following last votes, the House is expected to debate H.R 4438, as well as H.R. 4366 – under suspension of the Rules, and consider general debate on H.R. 10. Any recorded votes requested will be postponed until tomorrow.

**Members are also advised that only general debate of H.R. 10 will be considered today. Consideration of all amendments to the bill will occur tomorrow.

H.Res. 575 – Rule providing for consideration of H.Res. 567 – Providing for the Establishment of the Select Committee on the Events Surrounding the 2012 Terrorist Attack in Benghazi (Rep. Sessions – Rules) (One Hour of Debate). For H.Res. 567, the Rules Committee has recommended a closed Rule that provides for one hour of debate equally divided between and controlled Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Rules. The Rule allows no amendments, waives all points of order against the resolution and does not allow a motion to recommit. Members are urged to VOTE NO.

H.Res. 576 – Rule providing for consideration of H.R. 10 – Success and Opportunity through Quality Charter Schools Act (Rep. Kline – Education and the Workforce) (One Hour of Debate). The Rules committee has recommended a structured Rule that provides for ninety minutes of general debate equally divided and controlled by the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Education and the Workforce. The Rule allows for 12 amendments, debatable for 10 minutes equally divided between the offeror and an opponent. The Rule allows one motion to recommit, with or without instructions and it also waives all points of order against the legislation.

The Rule also allows for Suspension Authority through Thursday, May 8, 2014, for the House to consider H.R. 4366.

The Rules Committee rejected a motion by Mr. McGovern of Massachusetts to make in order a number of Democratic amendments. Members are urged to VOTE NO.

H.Res. 567 – Providing for the Establishment of the Select Committee on the Events Surrounding the 2012 Terrorist Attack in Benghazi (Rep. Sessions – Rules) (One Hour of Debate). This resolution would form a Select Committee to investigate further the terrorist attack on the U.S. Diplomatic Mission in Benghazi, Libya on September 11, 2012.  This horrific tragedy claimed the lives of four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens. It is critical to learn the facts around this tragedy, which is why there have already been extensive investigations.  In the aftermath of this tragedy, there were seven official reviews: one by the State Department Accountability Review Board, two bipartisan Senate reports, and four partisan House Republican reports.  Republicans have held more than 13 hearings, 50 briefings, and reviewed 25,000 pages of documents.  Despite the millions of dollars spent by agencies to respond to congressional inquiries, none of the investigations uncovered evidence of a conspiracy, cover-up, or that the Administration deliberately misled anyone. Meanwhile, Republicans violated the basic tenets of an impartial inquiry, denying Democrats equal access to hearing witnesses, issuing unilateral subpoenas without committee votes, and releasing multiple partisan staff reports.  Republicans also excluded Democrats from fact-finding Member delegation trips to Libya and leaked cherry-picked excerpts of testimonies to create false, politically-motivated narratives.   Even fellow Republicans complained about the overreach of Chairman Darrell Issa and his fellow investigators.  As House Armed Service Chairman Buck McKeon stated last month, “At some point, when we run out of people to talk to, or we run out of people to talk to two or three times, at some point, we think we'll have as much of this story as we're going to get and move on.” In spite of that, Republicans continue to politicize the event. Last week, Mr. Issa took the unprecedented step of issuing a unilateral subpoena, without a vote, for Secretary of State John Kerry and accusing the State Department of a crime. 

As recently as last month, Speaker Boehner said, “I see no reason to break up all the work that’s been done and to take months and months and months to create some select committee.” Now, however, he has flipped his stance in order to do just that.

Democrats believe it was important to have responsible, bipartisan efforts to obtain the facts surrounding the terrorist attack in Benghazi, and it is clear that those facts have already been exhaustively brought to light.  House Republicans should listen to Mr. McKeon’s advice, and stop filling the legislative schedule with political gimmicks.  Instead, they should take swift action on important issues, including passing comprehensive immigration reform, renewing unemployment insurance, raising the minimum wage, and taking action on job creation. Members are urged to VOTE NO.

Bill Text for H.Res. 567:
PDF Version

Background for H.Res 567:
House Report (HTML Version)
House Report (PDF Version)

Continue Consideration of H.R. 4438 American Research and Competitiveness Act of 2014 (Rep. Brady (TX) – Ways and Means) (One Hour of Debate). This bill would make the research and development (R&D) tax credit, which expired with the rest of the most recent tax extenders package at the end of calendar year 2013, permanent. The Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) estimates that this permanent extension will add $155 billion to the deficit over 10 years, and Republicans have chosen to bring the bill to the Floor without providing an offset.

The R&D tax credit is the first of six permanent corporate tax extender bills approved by Republicans on the Ways and Means Committee. These six bills taken together would add $310 billion to the deficit over the next decade – 13 times the amount that it would cost to renew emergency unemployment insurance for the entire year. It is hypocritical of House Republicans - who have let emergency unemployment insurance expire for more than 2.5 million Americans, refused to provide a permanent fix to the sustainable growth rate (SGR) for Medicare payments to doctors, and failed to replace the irrational, across-the-board spending cuts imposed by the sequester all on arguments over offsets - to bring this bill to the Floor without paying for it.

House Republicans are attempting to justify this lack of a pay-for with the incorrect assertion that tax cuts pay for themselves. In fact, many economists, including former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan and Bush Administration Secretary of the Treasury Hank Paulson have stated that this is simply not the case.

This bill also ignores the many other bipartisan priorities in past tax extenders packages, choosing instead to move R&D by itself. This puts several tax provisions that benefit middle class and low income Americans - like the state and local sales tax deduction, the $250 deduction for teachers who purchase supplies for their classroom, as well as incentives for renewable energy, education, and dozens of others - at risk of not being renewed.  The bill also puts in doubt the future expansion of key refundable tax credits that expire in 2017, like the Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit.

Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan has said that, “The people deserve a government that works for them, not one that buries them in more debt.” Unfortunately, bringing permanent, unpaid-for tax cuts to the Floor does exactly the opposite. The White House agrees and has issued a SAP stating that the President would veto this bill. If House Republicans are serious about fiscal responsibility, they should work with Democrats to find a bipartisan way to pay for making the R&D tax credit permanent, as well as other priority tax extenders, in a way that does not add to deficits and limit our ability to make the investments needed for businesses to continue to innovate, grow, and create well-paying jobs. Members are urged to VOTE NO.

Bill Text for H.R. 4438:
PDF Version

Background for H.R. 4438:
House Report (HTML Version)
House Report (PDF Version)
CRS Report: Research Tax Credit: Current Law and Policy Issues for the 113th Congress

Begin Consideration of H.R. 10 – Success and Opportunity through Quality Charter Schools Act (Rep. Kline – Education and the Workforce) (90 Minutes of Debate). This bill would reauthorize and make improvements to the Charter School Program (CSP). CSP is a competitive grant program authorized in Title V of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). The bill authorizes $300 million for FY 2015 and each of the fiscal years through FY 2020 for carrying out the high quality charter school program.

The bill would amend the existing charter school program to ensure greater quality, transparency, accountability and equity, merging the two current charter school programs (Charter School Program and Charter School Credit Enhancement Program) into one competitive grant program to support the startup, replication and expansion of charter schools at the state and local level, as well as consolidate facility financing assistance programs. The bill also allows the Secretary of Education to operate a start-up competition for charter schools in states that did not win or compete for a State Quality Charter School Grant.

All amendments will be considered starting tomorrow.

Bill Text for H.R. 10:
PDF Version

Background for H.R. 10:
House Report (HTML Version)
House Report (PDF Version)
CRS Report: Charter School Programs Authorized by the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA Title V-B): A Primer

Suspension (1 bill)

  1. H.R. 4366 – Strengthening Education through Research Act, as amended (Rep. Rokita – Education and the Workforce)

Postponed Suspension (1 bill)

  1. H.R. 2548 – The Electrify Africa Act of 2014, as amended (Rep. Royce – Foreign Affairs/Financial Services)
The GOP Leadership has announced the following schedule for Friday, May 9: The House will meet at 9:00 a.m. for legislative business. The House is expected to complete consideration of H.R. 10 – Success and Opportunity through Quality Charter Schools Act (Rep. Kline – Education and the Workforce). 
The Daily Quote

“Fiscal hard-liners in Congress have insisted on offsetting the cost of virtually every proposal that would increase the deficit — a temporary extension of benefits for the long-term unemployed, for example, or an increase in Medicare payments to doctors. But that discipline only goes so far. House Republicans have declared that when it comes to offsets, tax cuts don't count — budget be damned. Last week, the Republican-led House Ways and Means Committee voted largely along party lines to make six temporary tax cuts permanent, at a cost of $310 billion in lost revenue over the next 10 years. Total offsets: $0 over the next 10 years… For all their talk about the evils of deficits and the debt, Republicans have zero interest in paying for the cost of the R&D tax break. ‘This bill has been extended, unpaid for, probably 30 times,’ said Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich., chairman of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee.… Making a useful tax cut permanent makes sense, but doing it without offsetting the cost — and pretending the cost doesn't even matter — does not."

-    USA Today, 5/7/2014