No budget deal in sight as deadline looms

9 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

California members stall business on House floor as Democrats try to force gun control votes.

It happens every year. Disregarding calls from President Obama to act on the issue, the Senate on Tuesday once again rejected a measure that would ban folks on the terror watch list from acquiring guns. “This is to create a ‘gotcha’ moment for senators and candidates that are running in 2016,” Mr.Lawmakers on Capitol Hill have resigned themselves to the fact that they will need to pass a short government-funding measure by Friday if they want to give themselves time to come to an agreement on policy riders bogging down negotiations over a large omnibus spending bill.HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Widening a Republican rift in the Pennsylvania Legislature, House Republicans unilaterally attacked the state government’s 5-month-old budget stalemate with a spending plan of their own Tuesday, rejecting a bipartisan Senate vote a day earlier on a rival approach endorsed by Democratic Gov.Washington • Democrats took to the floors of the Senate and House on Tuesday to draw attention to their drive to prevent suspected violent extremists from obtaining guns.

Democrats in Congress attempted to force a vote on gun control measures in both houses Tuesday, further pressuring Republicans to address gun violence days after the San Bernardino shootings.The 407-19 roll call Tuesday by which the House voted to tighten controls on travel to the U.S. and require visas for anyone who’s been in Iraq or Syria in the previous five years.Democratic lawmakers in both the House and Senate used procedural tactics Tuesday to try to get Republican leaders to take up legislation to respond to the recent spate of mass killings in the United States. Cornyn said. “I’m astonished by the proposition…that you can be on a secret watch list by the federal government just by virtue of this secret listing from an individual on a government watch list, you can be denied some of your core constitutional rights without any necessity of the government establishing probable cause or producing any evidence that would justify the denial of a core constitutional right.” Sen. A number of controversial measures both parties want to see in a final deal are preventing Congress from wrapping up its year-end business by the Dec. 11 deadline.

Debate, livid at times, came days after a Muslim couple who federal authorities say adopted extremist views killed 14 people last week in San Bernardino, California. In all likelihood, the House will vote Friday on a short-term government funding measure to avoid a shutdown, giving Speaker Paul Ryan and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi more time to negotiate. Democrats — Aguilar, X; Bass, N; Becerra, Y; Bera, Y; Brownley, Y; Capps, Y; Cardenas, Y; Chu, Judy, Y; Costa, Y; Davis, Y; DeSaulnier, Y; Eshoo, Y; Farr, N; Garamendi, Y; Hahn, Y; Honda, N; Huffman, Y; Lee, N; Lieu, Ted, Y; Lofgren, Y; Lowenthal, Y; Matsui, Y; McNerney, Y; Napolitano, Y; Pelosi, Y; Peters, Y; Roybal-Allard, Y; Ruiz, Y; Sanchez, Linda T., Y; Sanchez, Loretta, Y; Schiff, Y; Sherman, Y; Speier, Y; Swalwell, Y; Takano, N; Thompson, Y; Torres, Y; Vargas, Y; Waters, Maxine, N. The Republican-controlled House voted 115-86 for a $30.3 billion general appropriations bill, with four Republicans joining every Democrat in voting “no.” The bill’s passage represented the second time in the past month that a proposed budget deal between Wolf and the Legislature’s Republican majorities has collapsed.

Republicans — Calvert, Y; Cook, Y; Denham, Y; Hunter, Y; Issa, Y; Knight, Y; LaMalfa, Y; McCarthy, Y; McClintock, Y; Nunes, Y; Rohrabacher, Y; Royce, Y; Valadao, Y; Walters, Mimi, Y. One deal discussed included Democrats agreeing to lift a U.S. oil-export ban in exchange for Republicans dropping many of their environmental policy demands. Republicans — Bilirakis, Y; Buchanan, Y; Clawson, Y; Crenshaw, Y; Curbelo, Y; DeSantis, Y; Diaz-Balart, Y; Jolly, Y; Mica, Y; Miller, Y; Nugent, Y; Posey, Y; Rooney, Y; Ros-Lehtinen, Y; Ross, Y; Webster, Y; Yoho, Y.

The measure would prevent any suspected terrorists who are registered on the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s so-called ”no-fly list” from buying a gun. Tom Wolf presented the first budget of his administration on March 3, more than 900 pages of revenue estimates and projected outlays to school districts, universities, social service agencies, municipal governments, you name it.

If somebody is on this watch list who shouldn’t be, and it is a very small number, then they have, through this legislation, a means to get off that list.” Both in his weekly address on Saturday and in his nationally-televised address to the nation Sunday, Mr. Some Democrats are also talking about trying to push a measure to grant Puerto Rico some relief as it battles default, something Republicans would be unlikely to support. A key hang-up for the Senate’s budget bill is the $1.2 billion full-year tax increase that Senate officials say could accompany it as part of the Senate’s deal with Wolf. Without naming them, he blamed the gap on the National Rifle Association, which for years has used an alliance with gun-rights lawmakers, mostly Republicans, to block gun control legislation in Congress.

Republicans — Allen, Y; Carter, Y; Collins, Y; Graves, Y; Hice, Jody B., Y; Loudermilk, Y; Price, Tom, Y; Scott, Austin, Y; Westmoreland, Y; Woodall, Y. Democrats — Clarke, N; Crowley, Y; Engel, Y; Higgins, Y; Israel, Y; Jeffries, Y; Lowey, Y; Maloney, Carolyn, Y; Maloney, Sean, Y; Meeks, Y; Meng, Y; Nadler, Y; Rangel, Y; Rice, Y; Serrano, Y; Slaughter, Y; Tonko, Y; Velazquez, Y. Democrats in the House would need some 30 Republicans to join them to get the denying firearms to terrorists bill passed, but only 3 or 4 Republicans support it so far.

Republicans — Boehner, X (the speaker by tradition often does not vote); Chabot, Y; Gibbs, Y; Johnson, Y; Jordan, Y; Joyce, Y; Latta, Y; Renacci, Y; Stivers, Y; Tiberi, Y; Turner, Y; Wenstrup, Y. That’s where Pennsylvanians still are today, nine months after his proposal was issued, five months after a budget was supposed to have been enacted. He offered his own plan giving the government 72 hours to delay gun sales to those suspected of terror acts and persuade a judge to block that sale, and letting the government immediately arrest the suspect.

Pelosi (D-Calif.) will skip a congressional trip to Paris that was scheduled to begin Thursday because of the ongoing funding talks, a Democratic aide said. Republicans — Barletta, Y; Costello, Y; Dent, Y; Fitzpatrick, Y; Kelly, Y; Marino, Y; Meehan, Y; Murphy, Y; Perry, Y; Pitts, Y; Rothfus, Y; Shuster, Y; Thompson, Y. The money would come from a $1 per-pack tax increase on cigarettes, new taxes on smokeless tobacco products and electronic cigarettes, and fees and taxes from legalizing Internet-based casino gambling sites and authorizing slot machines at off-track betting parlors.

The push to lift the export ban — first established after the 1973 Arab oil embargo — has been a major point of debate on the tax extenders package, but the same Senate aide noted that talks are now shifting toward moving the omnibus and tax extenders as one package, coming to the floor together in a single large vehicle. Meanwhile, Wolf has insisted on a tax increase big enough to deliver a record boost in aid to public schools and narrow a long-term budget deficit that has damaged Pennsylvania’s credit rating. As a trade-off, he has agreed to sign legislation long-sought by Senate Republicans to scale back public pension benefits and by House Republicans to allow private businesses to sell wine outside the state-controlled system. Then House Republicans pulled the rug out from under it and instead passed a plan that is $500 million lower, would mean less money for education and probably has no chance of being enacted. Mike Thompson, D-Calif., a leading gun-control advocate, forced a series of procedural votes to protest GOP leaders’ refusal to allow debate on legislation by Rep.

Lois Capps (D-Santa Barbara). “We’re trying to show that if this House is not going to take action on what’s at the top of the minds of all Americans, what are we really doing here?” Swalwell said. But House proposal would not harm working people or the state’s economy, House Appropriations Committee Chairman Bill Adolph, R-Delaware, told colleagues during floor debate.

Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) told reporters that it wasn’t any one provision on the omnibus that was a sticking point, just a collection of smaller issues that negotiators still had to work through. Democrats said it was very similar to a Republican budget bill that was vetoed by Wolf on June 30 because it did not do enough to address the deficit or reverse GOP-engineered cuts to education aid and human services funding going back to 2011. No more silence.” Experts at the hearing included a gun show dealer, a Virginia police chief, a former U.S. surgeon general and a gun policy expert. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa) said repeatedly calling for adjournment was a tactic the minority was welcome to use to bring attention to an issue, but “I don’t think it changes anybody’s mind.” Democrats called for adjournment five times Tuesday, and Thompson promised more adjournment motions would be brought up in coming days. He said the House Democratic Caucus agreed to this series of show votes to slow action on other must-pass legislation in the last congressional days of the year.

Several witnesses pointed out though although high profile mass shootings capture public attention, the every day gun violence of suicides and homicides claims the lives of many more Americans each year. In the U.S., there are twice as many suicides as homicides each year, and suicide attempts with guns are much more deadly than other kinds of attempts.

When we don’t have that kind of pressure, there’s a little bit more of an ability to fight, and stand up on principle rather than be jammed against schedules that are important to people.” House Democrats have their own set of policy concerns. Republican tax-writers, however, want to ensure that there is not fraud or abuse in these programs and are insisting on more “program integrity” checks.

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