IMMIGRATION. Speaker John Boehner says a recent move by President Obama makes it even more difficult to trust him with regard to immigration reform:
President Obama’s new national monument in New Mexico, which he announced Wednesday, thrilled environmentalists, who said it preserves nearly 500,000 acres of spectacular and pristine lands, but it could also doom his hopes of getting Congress to pass an immigration bill this year.
House Speaker John A. Boehner said the president’s unilateral move is exactly the type of action the GOP has been warning against, adding it shows the president isn’t serious about enforcing border security. Mr. Boehner has repeatedly said Republicans are reluctant to trust that the president will take seriously border security and immigration enforcement as part of a “comprehensive” deal that also would include the path to citizenship that Democrats prize.
SENATE RULES. Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) 13% has threatened another rules change in the Senate in response to Republicans’ alleged use of delaying tactics on nominations. Republicans say the change would serve to further sour relations between Republicans and Democrats:
“I’m not interested in changing the rules now. But now is a relative term,” the Nevada Democrat told reporters Tuesday.
A senior Senate Democratic aide said Democrats would “very seriously consider” changes if they retain the majority, including using the “nuclear option” to change the rules on a simple majority vote. Senate rules require a two-thirds majority to change the rules, but Democrats pushed through a rules change last year eliminating the 60-vote threshold for all nominations except those for the Supreme Court. They did so by overturning the ruling of the chairman with a simple majority vote.
WATER BILL. The House will vote today on their water bill, which Heritage Action opposes because of its increased costs and failure to reduce bureaucracy:
With House consideration of the waterway projects conference report ( HR 3080 , H Rept 113-449 ) perhaps just hours away, and support for passage thought to be much like the steamroller its pre-conference version was in the House last year, now might seem a strange time to see critics organizing against it.
But that is just what has happened in recent days, as both the Heritage Foundation and Taxpayers for Common Sense took aim at the legislation.
EX-IM BANK. Conservatives are steadily building opposition to the Export-Import Bank, a topic that Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) 83% will discuss this week at the Heritage Foundation (sub. req’d):
Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling will make remarks at the Heritage Foundation on Tuesday likely to focus on opposition to the U.S. Export-Import Bank.
The Texas Republican will speak at an event called, “A Time for Choosing: The Main Street Economy vs. The Washington Crony Economy.”
Conservatives are ramping up a push to let the Ex-Im Bank expire at the end of September, and they appear eager to make the Ex-Im reauthorization a flashpoint in the ongoing GOP civil war.
Analysis: This week the House will vote on the NDAA. The House may also vote on the WRRDA conference report. Though some back-logged projects were deuathorized in the conference, there is still room for much greater reform, and billions of dollars worth of back-logged projects still remain in the bill. It also adds 11 new projects, making it more similar to what Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) 5% and the Democratic Senate put out. It also does little to put us on a path toward prioritizing the Army Corps’ mission, which is dealing with $60-$80 billion in backlogged projects.