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This bill uses the budget procedure known as "reconciliation" to repeal most of ObamaCare. The greater portion of ObamaCare's worst portions are included in this repeal bill, including its many new taxes, the unconstitutional individual and employer mandates, the expansion of Medicaid, and the insurance premium subsidies. Passing this bill laid out the blueprint for how Congress would achieve full repeal once President Obama leaves the White House.
This legislation is an important step in protecting the First Amendment rights of Americans against harassment and coercion from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Introduced by Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.), this bill stops the IRS from collecting and releasing information about donors to tax-exempt organizations, which would chill political speech. The legislation would protect the free speech of donors to nonprofit organizations by modifying IRS disclosure requirements of information such as donor names and addresses. Under H.R. 5053, tax-exempt organizations are required to report only information on donors who contribute $5,000 or more and who are either an officer of the organization or one of its five highest paid employees.
H. Amdt. 1204 offered by Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY), to H.R. 5293, to the Department of Defense Appropriations Act 2017, protects the Fourth Amendment rights of Americans from unauthorized searches and seizures of property. The bill in its current form requires the National Security Agency and other intelligence agencies to follow due process and obtain a warrant to collect the communications of American citizens. Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) was written to only allow the government to collect the communications of foreigners, but a large quantity of American communications are bundled in during the process. By prohibiting backdoor spying, this measure represents a step forward in the battle to ensure privacy and security in the face of unconstitutional surveillance. The amendment also prohibits government agencies from requesting that U.S. companies build security vulnerabilities into their hardware or software in order to make it easier for the government to access them
H. Amdt. 1194 offered by Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.), to H.R. 5293, to the Department of Defense Appropriations Act 2017, would retain the U.S. military’s current practice of providing cash stipend to recruits, allowing them to pick the footwear of their personal preference. The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), passed by the House and Senate in May, changed current practice regarding footwear by including a “buy American” requirement, replacing the current cash allowance. This new language is a de facto earmark because it benefits one company: New Balance. The Department of Defense has concluded that the new language in the NDAA “would directly lead to a higher recruit injury rate at basic training,” The amendment would undo the New Balance provision, and halt an egregious example of crony capitalism that will cost taxpayers over $300 million and keeps this provision from coming into effect by not backing it.
S. 1252, the Global Food Security Act of 2016, introduced by Sen. Robert P. Casey, Jr. (D-PA), requires that the president “develop and implement a Global Food Security Strategy to promote global food security, resilience, and nutrition,” according to the summary of the bill. The bill authorizes funds that were previously being spent without authorization and these evidences fail to mitigate the fact that this legislation was passed in the Senate by voice vote without debate in just over a minute. A bill that costs billions of dollars should be subject to more rigorous scrutiny. Voting in an abbreviated procedure that blocks conservative amendments to the bill, and shortens debate under suspension of the rules makes a voice vote on this expensive and dubious legislation probable. The United States is hardly in the position to promote global food security and economic reforms when our federal government is badly failing to promote free market reforms at home that can reduce domestic food insecurity and address our bankrupting level of debt. According to the Congressional Budget Office, this bill “would cost $7.3 billion over the 2017-2021 spending period.”
H. Amdt. 1245 by Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Wis.) which “prohibits funds from being used to implement, administer, or enforce a new regulatory action of $100 million or more;”
H. Amdt. 1243 offered by Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.)) which “reduces the salary of the IRS Commissioner to $0 annually from date of enactment through January 20, 2017;”
H. Amdt. 1249 offered by Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) which “prohibits funds the use of funds to pay a performance bonus to any senior IRS employee
H. Amdt. 1342 offered by Rep. Gary Palmer (R-Ala.) which “ensures that none of the funds made available by this Act may be used for the Environmental Protection Agency’s Criminal Enforcement Division.” The cost and extent of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Criminal Enforcement Division are addressed by this amendment
H. Amdt. 1314 offered by Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) which “imposes a 1 percent across-the-board spending cut to the bill;”
H. Amdt.1346 offered by Rep. Scott Perry (R-Pa.) which “reduces Appropriations made in this Act for the Environmental Protection Agency by 17 percent.” The cost of EPA’s Clean Power Plan to Pennsylvania consumers would be shifted back to the EPA under this statement
H. Amdt. 1330 offered by Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) which “ensures that no funds appropriated by this Act can be used to implement, administer, or enforce David-Bacon prevailing rate wage requirements;”
This bill fully repeals all of ObamaCare and also directs the relevant House committees to draft a patient-centered health care reform proposal to replace it. ObamaCare has failed to either make health insurance more affordable or to improve access or quality of care, and must be repealed in order to enact real reforms to accomplish those goals.
This amendment by Rep. Tom McClintock would completely end the federal subsidies for Amtrak. In spite of billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies, Amtrak has continued to run an inefficient service that racks up massive annual losses, and should not continue being propped up by the government.
This bill would fully repeal the federal estate tax, better known to most as the "death tax". Not only does the death tax represent double (or more) taxation of an individual's property and belongings, it can also destroy individually owned family farms and small businesses.
While this bill is intended to make information sharing on cyber threats easier, it also sacrifices many privacy protections in the process. The bill fails to ensure that companies and government agencies are not sharing personally identifiable information when they report cyber attacks. Worse, the bill requires that cyber threat information be shared with the NSA. Although well-intentioned, the privacy loopholes in this bill turn in from a "cybersecurity" bill to a "cybersurveillance" bill.
This amendment by Rep. Tom McClintock would eliminate the Department of Energy funding for the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and Fossil Energy programs, and would sharply reduce funding for nuclear energy programs. Removing these market-distorting subsidies would save nearly $3 billion.
Currently, the NSA and FBI can access the electronic communications of U.S. citizens collected without a specific warrant under section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. This amendment by Reps. Massie and Lofgren would defund those activities. It would also prevent the NSA from requesting that security vulnerabilities be built into private products.
This bill would delay the EPA from implementing their economically devastating new greenhouse gas emissions rule for existing power plants. If implemented, this rule would cause many coal-fired power plants to shut down, dramatically increasing energy costs for millions of Americans.
This amendment by Rep. Zeldin would greatly strengthen current prohibitions against coercing states to adopt national educational standards. Specifically, it prohibits the Secretary of Education from conditioning any grant money or waivers upon states keeping Common Core or any other specific national curriculum standards.
This amendment by Rep. Polis (introduced for Rep. Meng) would establish grants to entice states to subsidize early childhood education (Head Start) programs. This would entail an effective federalization of pre-K education at taxpayer expense. Not only does the federal government have no place centralizing yet another aspect of education, repeated studies have shown that Head Start and similar pre-K education programs are ineffective.
As written, H.R. 6 would create nearly $2 billion per year in new mandatory spending (not subject to budget caps). This amendment by Rep. Brat would force Congress to account for the new spending under the Budget Control Act caps and therefore to find equivalent cuts elsewhere.
This bill, entitled the “REINS Act”, would require a vote in Congress on any “major” regulation (over $100 million in economic impact) issued by the executive branch before it could be enforced on the American people. The REINS Act would thus restore much of Congress' lawmaking authority that it has ceded to the executive branch over the past century.
In an uncommon move, 218 Members of the House of Representatives signed a discharge petition regarding H.R. 597 - a bill to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank of the United States. This successful petition bypasses the House Committee on Finance, in which the bill had been stalled, bringing the bill straight to the House floor. The Export-Import bank serves as a taxpayer-backed conduit for corporate welfare, and should be left expired. Only signers of the petition are scored for this vote.
This amendment by Rep. Justin Amash would remove the section of the bill that would provide $500 million in new spending for the Maritime Security Fleet program. This new spending, while a relatively small amount was quietly added into the bill without any vote, ignoring the amendment and committee process. This spending represents a shallow attempt to court a narrow special interest group to gain votes for the bill - essentially violating the House ban on earmarks.
This bill would reauthorize the U.S. Export-Import Bank through 2019. The Ex-Im Bank's loans and guarantees distort trade markets, and mostly flow to a small number of immense, politically connected corporations. Congress allowed the Ex-Im Bank's charter to expire in June, and this 80-year-old corporate welfare program should stay closed.
This bill was the vehicle for the budget agreement that will spend $80 billion beyond the Budget Control Act caps over two years, along with $16 billion in new defense spending that doesn't count towards the caps. The supposed offsets to this spending are mostly either gimmicks or long-term, while the new deficit spending is immediate. The bill also suspends the debt ceiling through March of 2017, effectively giving the government a blank check for that period.
This amendment by Rep. Steve King would effectively prevent Davis-Bacon wage controls from applying to the infrastructure projects funded by this highway funding bill. These onerous wage requirement were designed to shut out competition with unions for federal contracts, and end up costing taxpayers huge sums of money.
This resolution invokes the Congressional Act to disapprove of the recent EPA rule that greatly increases emissions restrictions on existing coal-fired power plants. This tremendously destructive regulation would greatly increase energy costs in the many states which rely heavily upon coal-fired power plants for their electricity. These cost increases damage overall economic growth, and in particular lower the standard of living of lower-income earners.
This resolution invokes the Congressional Act to disapprove of the recent EPA rule that greatly increases emissions restrictions on any future coal-fired power plants. This rule tightens emissions standards to the point where it will likely not be economically feasible to build new coal-fired electric plants, crippling one of the most abundant and cost-effective sources of energy in America.
This amendment by Rep. Joe Barton would finally lift the decades-old ban on exporting U.S. crude oil. This would allow the U.S. to take better advantage of our recent major surge in oil production, creating thousands of new jobs and boosting economic growth in the process.
This bill would renew federal highway funding to states for a period of five years. However, it does not solve the structural deficit within the Highway Trust Fund, doesn't eliminate the wasteful spending that takes away from funding roads, and doesn't offset that spending in any real way. Furthermore, this bill contains a reauthorization of the expired Export-Import Bank, in order to prevent having a standalone vote on renewing such a direct corporate welfare fund.
This omnibus appropriations bills for Fiscal Year 2016 funds former Speaker Boehner's budget-busting deal to the tune of $50 billion above the budget caps for 2016. It contains several very troubling legislative riders a well, including more funding for the IMF, and a massive new cybersecurity information sharing program that violates consumers' privacy and due process. It also fails to include most of the amendments from the appropriations process that would have defunded key, harmful federal regulations.
This bill funded the federal government for the remainder of the fiscal year (through September, 2014). It spends $45 billion more than the budget caps established in 2011, and perpetuates a vast amount of wasteful spending from previous years. Lawmakers were also given almost no time to read this 1,500 page spending bill.
This final version of the Farm Bill, reconciled between the House and Senate, actually undoes some of the already modest reforms to crop insurance and food stamps that were previously in the bill. This five-year reauthorization of the Farm Bill will spend nearly a trillion dollars over ten years, and remains loaded with corporate welfare and special carve-outs for well-connected agricultural corporations.
This bill suspends the debt limit until March 15th of 2015, allowing the president to potentially run up as much debt as he pleases during that time period. The debt is already projected to increase by about $1 trillion over that period, to over $18 trillion. Meanwhile, this debt ceiling suspension contains no reforms to curb spending whatsoever.
This bill would effectively undo the damaging Supreme Court decision in the case of Kelo v. New London, which held that the government can redistribute property from one individual to another if it serves a community's "economic development. The bill stops federal, state, and local governments from exercising eminent domain to seize private property for the purpose of "economic development" or any other transfer from a private owner to another private entity. It also provides legal rights for property owners to sue the government for abuse of eminent domain.
This bill would stop the IRS for one year from finalizing a proposed regulation that would stop grassroots non-profit groups from engaging in political free speech. On the heels of the IRS targeting of conservative groups, the regulation that this bill would delay would seemingly finish their job by excluding tea parties and other grassroots groups from any role in the political process.
This bill would delay a major reform to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) that would have returned some semblance of market rates to flood insurance premiums. Currently, NFIP is over $25 billion in debt because homeowners in frequently flooded areas do not have to pay an amount that is equal to the risk they incur, meaning that the government takes a loss when the inevitable floods occur. By delaying the scheduled reforms, the NFIP will require a taxpayer bailout for billions of dollars.
Delaying Obamacare's unconstitutional individual insurance mandate extends the same exception to the law that was extended to businesses with the delay of the employer mandate. This delay would also prevent Obamacare from taking full effect, and provides an extended window to work on defunding, delaying, or dismantling the entire law.
This bill would stop the EPA from imposing proposed regulations that would effectively ban new coal-fired power plants from ever being constructed. It would require the EPA to take into account current achievable technologies from existing plants when setting future emission reductions, stopping them from promulgating impossible regulations that would kill the coal industry.
This bill would require that all government budget calculations be made based upon the spending levels for the current fiscal year. Currently, budget projections assume an automatic increase in federal spending based upon the rate of inflation, meaning that even stopping the growth of federal spending would be scored as a cut. Baseline budgeting would force Congress to account for this "automatic" growth of government spending honestly.
This amendment specifically prevents Defense funding from being used to implement any climate change recommendations that are based upon controversial international and U.S. scientific assessments, including the IPCC's 5th Assessment Report, the U.S. Global Change Research Program National Climate Assessment, or the United Nations Agenda 21 sustainable development plan.
This amendment by Rep. Mike Pompeo would eliminate the Economic Development Administration, a Great Society creation that has turned into a de facto backdoor earmark program.
This amendment by Rep. Marsha Blackburn would reduce the spending levels in the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies appropriations bill by 1% across the board, with the exception of funding for the FBI.
This amendment by Rep. John Fleming would prevent federal funding for state and local license plate scanning programs. Mass scanning of license plates has the potential to be as invasive of individuals' privacy as the NSA's phone data collection, and should not be subsidized federally.
This amendment by Rep. Marsha Blackburn would cut spending from Transportation and Housing & Urban Development appropriations bill by 1% across the board.
This amendment by Rep. Thomas Massie requires the NSA and other intelligence agencies to obtain specific warrants in order to access communications metadata collected on American citizens. It also stops intelligence agencies from using "backdoor" security vulnerabilities to access companies' data.
This amendment by Rep. Tom McClintock would eliminate all funding for the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Program and the Fossil Energy Research and Development Program, and reduce funding for the Nuclear Energy Programs, saving taxpayers $3.1 billion dollars.
This amendment by Rep. Richard Hudson would reduce spending in the Energy & Water Appropriations bill by 7.4831%, which would return spending in the bill to 2008 levels. Defense and nuclear security programs would be exempted from the cut.
This bill bails out the nearly depleted Highway Trust Fund through May of 2015, using revenue gimmicks to supposedly offset most of the cost. The Highway Trust fund desperately needs reform instead of merely continuing to receive periodic taxpayer bailouts.
This bill would stop the Environmental Protection Agency from finalizing a new rule that would allow them to regulate practically any water under the Clean Water Act. The CWA was intended to regulate "navigable waterways", but the EPA wants to be able to regulate everything from irrigation ditches to ponds to dry creek beds - which would massively infringe upon property owners' rights to develop their own land.
This bill would require a full and comprehensive audit of the Federal Reserve. The central bank of the United States has operated in secrecy for over a century, and should be fully open to Congressional and public scrutiny.
This trillion-plus dollar spending bill was crafted behind closed doors and was packed with dozens of policy riders that Congress never had a chance to vote on individually. It continues to fund the federal government fully, with zero reforms to the government's out-of-control spending.
The funding for Hurricane Sandy relief efforts was appropriated as "emergency" funding, meaning that it was above and beyond the amount of spending allowed by existing budget caps. This amendment by Rep. Mulvaney would simply offset a large portion of this emergency spending by making a slight, across-the-board reduction in discretionary spending.
This amendment, sponsored by Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ-11), would add another $33 billion to the Disaster Relief Act, bringing the total spending in the bill to over $50 billion. Although the bill is supposedly to help the victims of Hurricane Sandy, the better portion of this amendment funds unrelated programs such as community development block grants. The "emergency" spending is also not offset, meaning that it will add to the federal deficit.
This bill is an "emergency" appropriations bill that contains $50.1 billion in spending that is supposed to aid those affected by Hurricane Sandy. In reality, however, most of the spending will not provide acute disaster relief, and much of it is not even scheduled to be spent until 2014 or later. Thus, the bill functions more like a stimulus than true disaster relief and its spending should be appropriated through the budget process instead of as emergency spending that adds to the federal deficit.
This bill raises the statutory limit on the public debt (the "debt ceiling") by whatever amount is necessary to reach May 19th, 2013. Although the bill theoretically contains a "no budget, no pay" provision conditional upon the Senate passing a budget resolution, in reality the provision has no teeth. FreedomWorks insists that further increases in the debt ceiling by accompanied by proportional decreases in federal spending in order to address the ever-increasing federal debt, which at the time of this bill stood at $16.4 trillion. Instead, this bill amounts to a "clean" debt ceiling hike, accompanied by the unenforceable promise of spending reforms at a later date.
This closed rule does allow for any extended debate or amendments to the Continuing Resolution, thus allowing a bill that spends at the rate of over $1 trillion per year to be passed without any input from individual Members of Congress on the floor of the House.
This bill would repeal ObamaCare entirely, stopping the government takeover of our health care. If allowed to take effect, ObamaCare will greatly increase health insurance costs, reduce the quality of care, and eventually lead to direct rationing of care. It also contains unconstitutional mandates that attempt to force people to buy health insurance, an unprecedented use of federal power.
The so-called "Farm Bill" is actually a combination of agricultural policy and welfare, with food stamps accounting for 80 percent of the bill's nearly trillion dollars in projected spending. Aside from failing to contain the multitude of faults within the rapidly-expanding food welfare programs, the agricultural portion of the bill is an amalgam of direct corporate welfare for insurance companies and farm corporations and special carve-outs and price supports for the specific industries with the best lobbyists.
This amendment by Rep. McClintock would cut $1.544 billion from various research and development programs for alternative energy. The free market can take care of researching and development the next generation of energy technologies far more efficiently than the federal government can, without the distorting effect of the government picking winners and losers.
This version of the Farm Bill contains only the actual agricultural side of the earlier bill, leaving food stamps to be considered as their own bill. Unfortunately, this bill actually makes the Farm Bill worse by making the billions in subsidies to farm corporations and dozens of special hand-outs to favored industries permanent, instead of making free market reforms. The bill also still contains the brand new, unnecessary "shallow-loss" crop insurance entitlement, which will actually increase the Farm Bill's cost.
This bill would simply delay the enactment of ObamaCare's "individual mandate" for one year, extending the same temporary reprieve for individuals that was granted to businesses when the administration delayed the employer mandate. Delaying the individual mandate effectively forces a delay of the entire law, and buys time to work to defund and dismantle ObamaCare entirely.
This amendment to the DoD Appropriations Act, by Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI), protects a basic 4th Amendment right by requiring that the NSA can only gather electronic data from people who are actively under an investigation with approval of the FISA court. This is basic due process under the law - you need a specific warrant to search and seize an individual's physical property; the same should apply to that individual's communications and digital property.
This amendment to the T-HUD Appropriations bill would eliminate the Essential Air Service program, a wasteful federal subsidy that supports seldom-used rural airfields. This would save taxpayers $100 million.
This amendment by Rep. Scalise (R-LA) effectively prevents the executive branch from levying any form of carbon tax without Congressional approval. Since a carbon tax would be tremendously destructive to the economy as a whole, this measure would hopefully make such a tax far less likely to pass.
This bill, entitled the “REINS Act”, would require a vote in Congress on any “major” regulations issued by the executive branch before it could be enforced on the American people. The REINS Act would thus restore accountability and protect citizens’ rights by giving elected officials a voice in all major regulations issued.
This bill would prevent the IRS from implementing or enforcing any aspect of ObamaCare. Under the law as written, the IRS would have access to a massive new data source called the "Federal Data Services Hub", which would give the IRS employees charged with enforcing ObamaCare's mandates unprecedented access to information about each and every taxpayer. In the wake of multiple scandals in which IRS employees deliberately leaked sensitive personal information on political candidates and groups, it makes little sense to put them in charge or our health care.
Congressman Mark Meadows solicited signatures for a letter to Speaker Boehner, asking that the House Republicans stand firm in their commitment to defund ObamaCare through the Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund the federal government. Members who signed the letter affirmed their commitment to resist ObamaCare using a must-pass bill (the CR), rather than continuing to take ineffectual, symbolic votes to that effect.
This initial Continuing Resolution offered by the House during the debate over the funding for ObamaCare fully funds the entire federal government except for any further implementation or operation of ObamaCare. The premium increases, dropped insurance policies, and delays of major portions of ObamaCare made clear that this poorly-written law could not succeed, and this Continuing Resolution was the last chance to stop ObamaCare's harmful policies before they took full effect.
H.R. 2775 was used as the vehicle for the Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund the federal government. This bill funds the government fully (including ObamaCare) through January 15th of 2014, suspends the debt ceiling completely until February of 2014, and obliges both chambers of Congress to go to conference on a full-year budget. In other words, this CR allows for more uncontrolled spending and debt, with no reforms to either, does nothing to address ObamaCare, and potentially promises more future spending if a budget agreement is reached.
This bill would protect individual states' rights to develop energy resources within their borders by declaring state regulations on hydraulic fracturing to have supremacy over those issued by the federal EPA. Hydraulic fracturing (or "fracking") has proven to be a safe and economical way to develop America's vast natural gas resources, and in those state which choose to allow fracking thousands of new jobs will be created as a result.
This bill simply expedites the permitting process for establishing natural gas pipelines. Currently the federal government has slowed down pipeline construction by as much as several years in many instances, and this bill would require that the permitting process be finished within one year of a permit request being filed.
This is the final House vote to pass the budget deal negotiated by Congressman Paul Ryan and Senator Patty Murray. The deal breaks the budget caps established in 2011 by $63 billion over two years, while claiming to contain a net deficit reduction over ten years by raising fees and making other minor cuts. With no guarantee that future congresses will obey the scheduled spending cuts, this bill delivers increases in both spending and taxes in exchange for no meaningful reforms.