Federal Relations

New CR Through April 8th

** UPDATE 3/17 ** This afternoon, the Senate voted 87-13 in favor of a three-week stopgap spending measure, or continuing resolution (CR), that would keep the federal government funded through April 8th.   The new CR includes $6 billion in cuts to the federal budget. Some conservative House Republicans had pledged to vote against the measure,

Congress Prepares Next Short-Term CR

Yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee revealed the details of the next short-term continuing resolution (CR), which would keep the federal government funded through April 8th.  The current CR expires on March 18th.  The new spending measure would cut another $6 billion below current levels.  The package would fulfill the Republican leadership’s commitment to cut $2 billion

Senate Votes Down Two FY11 Budget Proposals

The Senate today rejected alternative Republican and Democratic approaches to the long-term FY11 spending bill.  The House-passed HR 1, which would cut $57.5 billion from current FY11 funding, failed on a vote of 44-56; the Senate Democratic leadership plan, which would cut $4.7 billion from current funding, failed on a vote of 42-58.  Since neither

Senate Passes Patent Overhaul Bill

By a vote of 95-5, the Senate approved S. 23, a measure aimed at updating the nation’s patent system for the first time in decades.  Supporters of the bill believe it will foster innovation and bolster US economic growth and competitiveness around the world.  The debate now moves to the House where it faces an

FY11 Debate Continues…

After approving another continuing resolution (CR) last week to run through March 18th, Congress must now get serious about how to fund the remaining six months of FY11, which has been operating roughly at FY10 levels since the start of the fiscal year on October 1, 2010.  The Republican controlled House and the Democratic controlled

Congress Works to Finalize FY11 Budget

The Republican effort to roll back non-security discretionary spending to FY08 levels officially gets started this week with the return of House lawmakers from their one-week recess.  On Tuesday, House Republicans will set their new, enforceable spending limits for FY11, and later in the week unveil their package to cut spending for the remainder of

Federal Spending Cuts Planned

House Republicans are still considering options for how best to keep their campaign promise to cut federal spending and the overall size of government. Today they will consider a resolution that would require the House Budget Committee Chairman to set FY11 non-security discretionary spending limits at FY08 levels. The full House expects to vote on

Tucson Tragedy Puts Legislative Schedule on Hold

The shooting over the weekend of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) and 19 others has prompted House leaders to cancel pending action on legislation this week, including their plans to vote on repealing health care reform. Instead, the House will be in session for two days this week but the only business will occur Wednesday when

Fiscal Issues Dominate First Days in Congress

The 112th Congress convened Wednesday amid ceremonial pomp in the House with the election of Speaker John Boehner (R-OH). Their first order of business was to adopt a rules package for the 112th Congress that is designed to advance Republican priorities to control federal spending, cut the deficit, and makes the chamber more accountable to

112th Congress Convenes Today

The 112th Congress convenes today, reinstating an era of divided government with Republicans in control of the House and Democrats in control of the Senate and White House.  Republicans will have a 242-193 majority in the House, while Senate Democrats and their two independent allies will hold a majority of 53 seats, compared with 47

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