Driving the Day: Conservative Gut Check

This afternoon, the House will vote on legislation to extend expiring provisions of the Trade Adjustment Assistance  (TAA) program.  Not only does the program cost money – $1.1 billion in 2010 – but a study by the Government Accountability Office found that program participants are more likely to earn less money in subsequent jobs.  For conservatives, allowing an ineffective and costly program to expire should be an easy choice.

Unfortunately, as we mentioned yesterday, a vote on extending the program will come up under a suspension of the rules, requiring a two-thirds vote and usually reserved for non-controversial measures.  As Russ Vought points out, this is anything but:

TAA benefits are typically the political sweetener that accompany pending free trade agreements, such as the Columbian Free Trade Agreement, in order to attract votes from free trade skeptics. Unfortunately, House Republicans are now attaching it to a worthwhile but run-of-the-mill extension of the Andean Trade Preference Act, even though a Democrat Congress was able to pass a short term extension of this very trade preference, as recently as December 14, 2009, without attaching TAA benefits as a sweetener. What gives?

It’s time for a conservative gut check.  With trillion dollar annual deficits on the horizon, we need to begin making serious decisions.  Allowing TAA to expire would demonstrate that seriousness.

3pm Update: House leadership pulled TAA from the calendar.

Please Share Your Thoughts

8 thoughts on “Driving the Day: Conservative Gut Check

  1. For those on Capitol Hill, it is high time some one told you this:

    “You are the LEAST informed people when it comes to the wants, needs, and desires of the people.”

    I’ll give you a few tips on what the people want and they’re simple:

    1) Back off
    2) Get out of my way
    3) Get out of my life
    4) Follow the Constitution, TO THE LETTER!

    Simple isn’t it?

  2. For those on Capitol Hill, it is high time some one told you this:

    “You are the LEAST informed people when it comes to the wants, needs, and desires of the people.”

    I’ll give you a few tips on what the people want and they’re simple:

    1) Back off
    2) Get out of my way
    3) Get out of my life
    4) Follow the Constitution, TO THE LETTER!

    Simple isn’t it?

  3. This is the 3rd time in the last two days that the Republicans have shot themselves in the foot legislatively. Does anyone up there know how to count votes? Who is setting the legislative agenda? Why isn’t the Speaker more involved?

  4. This is the 3rd time in the last two days that the Republicans have shot themselves in the foot legislatively. Does anyone up there know how to count votes? Who is setting the legislative agenda? Why isn’t the Speaker more involved?

  5. What is going on with our Republicans??? I wasn’t aware of TAA program and the vote but on top of that what happened to the $100 billion cuts they promised us in the “Pledge”? All of a sudden it is $38 billion. I understand this is supposed to have something to do with procedural matters in the House but why don’t they explain this to their voters. I am now wondering if we have once again been led down the primrose path??

  6. What is going on with our Republicans??? I wasn’t aware of TAA program and the vote but on top of that what happened to the $100 billion cuts they promised us in the “Pledge”? All of a sudden it is $38 billion. I understand this is supposed to have something to do with procedural matters in the House but why don’t they explain this to their voters. I am now wondering if we have once again been led down the primrose path??

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