*End of Year Extenders

House GOP’s Do Nothing Agenda

Wanted to make sure you all saw today’s scathing editorial in the New York Times lambasting House Republicans’ latest excuse to have no legislative agenda:

With unrestrained glee, Republicans are using the calamitous debut of the Affordable Care Act as their latest justification for undermining all of health care reform. But they’re not stopping there. The Obama administration’s fumbling is apparently a good excuse for them to do nothing on immigration reform, on a budget agreement, and on any other initiative coming out of the White House.”

What is the Republican alternative to this government program, flawed as it is right now? There is none. Party members simply want to repeal the health law and let insurers go back to canceling policies at the first sign of a shadow on an X-ray. They have no immigration policy of their own. They have no plan that will stimulate job growth. They are in favor only of shutdowns and sequesters and repeals, giving the public no reason to believe they have a governing vision or even a legislative agenda.”

Over time, that will prove to be a far more serious failure than momentary incompetence.”

Ouch!  If House Republicans need suggestions on how to fill the legislative calendar, we’d like to point out this article in CQ about the unemployment insurance benefits that are scheduled to expire at the end of the year:

“House and Senate Democrats are set to launch another effort to extend emergency aid to the long-term unemployed for one more year. Congress has until the end of December to extend the benefits and keep roughly 1.3 million workers who have been unemployed for six months or more from being cut off at the start of the new year.”

And of course that’s just one of several critical pieces of legislation awaiting Congressional action, including the budget agreement, a farm bill with nutrition funding, immigration reform, a SGR fix… the list goes on.