Hybrid spending bill moves toward passage...Read More
Fights Slow Release of 'Cromnibus' to Fund Government
Spending authority expires on Dec. 11 under the current continuing resolution...Read More
Individuals with Disabilities Get Tax Break
Achieving a better life for those with disabilities and their families is the goal of the measure...Read More
The final vote on the $41.6 billion tax extenders package was, like the cromnibus last week, a very bipartisan affair. (76-16)
Congress has Ajourned Sine Die
DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS WITH CUBA
U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan today lauded President Obama’s decision to re-establish diplomatic relations with Cuba, along with the announcement that U.S. contractor Alan Gross has been freed by the Cuban government after three years in captivity...Click to Read More
When I read through this bill, I saw that it included a number of the things I care about, and a number of the things you’ve written me about. This bill includes many provisions to help our economy grow, allow our farmers and ranchers to succeed, protect our second amendment rights, and ensure our veterans can get the care they deserve, among other things. -- Rep. Denham (CA)
REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT IN ADDRESS TO THE NATION ON IMMIGRATION
THE PRESIDENT: My fellow Americans, tonight, I’d like to talk with you about immigration.
For more than 200 years, our tradition of welcoming immigrants from around the world has given us a tremendous advantage over other nations. It’s kept us youthful, dynamic, and entrepreneurial. It has shaped our character as a people with limitless possibilities –- people not trapped by our past, but able to remake ourselves as we choose... - President Obama
MORE STILL SAY HEALTH LAW HAS HURT INSTEAD OF HELPED THEM
Although more provisions of the Affordable Care Act have taken effect over the past year, more Americans still say the law has hurt rather than helped them. Compared with early 2014, fewer Americans say it has had no effect, although this group is still in the majority, at 54%. -- GALLUP
This continuing resolution would fund the government through December 11, 2014, extending appropriations at the current rate into FY2015, which begins on October 1, 2014. It includes an across-the-board cut of 0.0554% in order to maintain the $1.012 trillion FY2014 discretionary level agreed to in the Bipartisan Budget Agreement... House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer
For years, President Obama has tried to use Washington bureaucracy to fix America’s problems. He made a lot of promises – like a functioning and inexpensive health-care system, a successful economic stimulus, a new energy economy, to name a few. Yet each and every one of these promises was broken, and it’s the American people stuck with the cancelled insurance plans, the threat of insolvency, and a “recovery” that feels almost as bad as the recession... - House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy
CONGRESSIONAL JOB APPROVAL STAYS NEAR HISTORICAL LOW
Thirteen percent of Americans approve, 83% disapprove
by Jeffrey M. Jones
PRINCETON, NJ -- Americans' dismal evaluations of Congress continue, with 13% approving and 83% disapproving of the job it is doing. That approval rating is just four percentage points above the all-time low of 9% measured last November. -- GALLUP Poll
OBAMA ADMINISTRATION ANNOUNCED HUMANITARIAN AID FOR SOUTH SUDAN
“Today’s announcement of $180 million in food aid to alleviate the threat of famine in South Sudan reflects America’s continued determination to help the people of the world’s newest sovereign state pursue a future of opportunity and peace... Minority Whip Steny Hoyer
Senators passed the final controversial bill of this Congress easily earlier Tuesday evening, sending a deal to extend more than 50 tax breaks that expired at the end of 2013 through December to the president's desk. The bill passed after a fight between Reid and the White House scuttled a more ambitious deal last month.
Reid had negotiated a deal with Republicans in November to extend the tax credits for at least two years, with several tax breaks favored by the business community earning permanent extensions. The bill lacked, however, a permanent extension of the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit, as the White House had pushed for, leaving both to expire in 2017... Click to See Summary
As Chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, Senator Carper -- along with the committee's ranking Republican, Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma -- has introduced the Postal Reform Act of 2014. The bipartisan legislation seeks to address the Postal Service’s financial challenges by helping it streamline operations and giving it new tools it can use to introduce innovative new products and generate additional revenue. It does this while preserving essential services... - Sen. Carper (DE)
OBAMA'S "STRONG DISAPPROVAL" DOUBLE HIS "STRONG APPROVAL"
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Americans are more than twice as likely to say they "strongly disapprove" (39%) of President Barack Obama's job performance as they are to say they "strongly approve" (17%). The percentage of Americans who strongly disapprove of Obama has increased over time, while the percentage who strongly approve has dropped by almost half. -- GALLUP Poll
America now owes over $14 trillion to our creditors. This is simply unsustainable. The Bowles-Simpson fiscal commission plan is not perfect, and it is certainly not the plan I would have written myself. But it would help put Americans back to work and it would reduce our federal debt dramatically. If we don’t act now – if we pass this issue on to another Congress, another generation - the tough choices we face now only get tougher. -- Sen. Assistant Majority Leader, Dick Durbin (IL)
BIG BANKS CLAIM MILLIONS OF DOLLARS IN TAX CREDITS INTENDED FOR POOR COMMUNITIES
A billionaire’s fantasy island, Emmy award winning producers, Goldman Sachs, Broadway music from Hollywood, Starbucks, and even dolphins benefited from a tax credit intended to help struggling communities and lower income Americans seeking new opportunities.
“Banking on the Poor,” a new report released today by Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) reveals the federal New Markets Tax Credit program is benefitting big banks and private investors that are claiming more than $1 billion of the credit annually. -- Sen. Tom Coburn (OK)
THE KEYSTONE DELAY IS COSTING US MORE THAN JOBS AND REVENUES
The five-year delay in building the Keystone XL pipeline is costing us jobs and wages, limiting our access to low-cost North American oil, and facilitating our continued reliance on oil from the Middle East and Venezuela. While the economic costs of delay are well documented, the environmental and human impacts could also be devastating... By Catrina Rorke (American Action Forum)
Your Top Issue The 114th Congress begins in just a few short weeks. We want to know what you think is the number one issue Congress should work on the upcoming year. Please check the one that you think is the most important issue to you for 2015.
What issues should Congress should focus on in 2015?