Charlie Dent is Shilling for Nancy Pelosi

Washington — According to the Huffington Post, Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA) 29% is floating “a quirky congressional procedure” known as the King of the Hill, but in a twist, “if no budget secures a majority, then the current budget [ceiling] of $1.070 trillion would be automatically ‘deemed.’” Heritage Action released the following statement from chief executive officer Michael A. Needham:

“Representative Dent’s plan is a gimmick and one that exposes him as a shill for Nancy Pelosi. This isn’t surprising as last October he floated a ‘bipartisan coalition to elect the next Speaker.’ Instead of playing games, House Republicans should pass a budget at $1.040 trillion, the level established by the BCA in 2011.

“If the Republican-controlled House is going to default to any level, it should be the FY17 number established in the previously passed FY16 Republican budget. That number — $1.013 trillion — was supported last year by 226 House Republicans, including Dent. Deeming a spending number set by Nancy Pelosi, Barack Obama and a small minority of Republicans is unacceptable.”

Heritage Action Reviewing House Puerto Rico Bill

Washington — The House Natural Resources Committee released a draft proposal to address Puerto Rico’s debt crisis, the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA). Heritage Action released the following statement from chief executive officer Michael A. Needham:

“Heritage Action is still reviewing the text, but conservatives must ensure the bill would not set any bad precedents by retroactively changing the terms of contracts or reversing payment prioritizations.  Additionally, for any plan to be worth supporting it must include strong pro-growth components, such as suspending the Jones Act and lowering the minimum wage.”

Earlier this month, Heritage Action outlined the appropriate conservative response to Puerto Rico’s debt crisis.  Below are key excerpts from that memo:

GOP Appropriators to Republicans: Get in Line, or Else

Washington – Even though the Bipartisan Budget Act (BBA) of 2015 passed the House last fall with just 79 Republican votes, House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers (R-KY) 41% said today that the committee is “marching straight ahead” in the absence of a Republican budget by “marking up all our bills at $1.07 [trillion],” which was the spending cap — not floor — set by the BBA. Rogers added that appropriators would be “bringing as many [of those bills] as we can on the floor.” Heritage Action released the following statement from chief executive officer Michael A. Needham:

“Congressman Rogers is sending a very clear signal that the concerns expressed by two-thirds of the Republican Conference last fall do not matter. No one should be surprised though – this is how the process works in Washington.  Continuing down this path may excite appropriators and special interests but it will not unite the party.  In fact, it will likely exacerbate the anti-Washington sentiment so many members hear from their constituents.”

Obama Nominates Liberal Merrick Garland for Supreme Court

Washington – Today, President Obama nominated Judge Merrick Garland to fill the Supreme Court seat left vacant following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.  Heritage Action released the following statement from chief executive officer Michael A. Needham:

“Nothing has changed. Senate Republicans deserve credit for using their ‘Advice and Consent’ authority to ensure the American people’s voices are not ignored as they are in the process of selecting their next president.  The next president —  Republican or Democrat — should be in the position to fill the Court’s vacancy with the advise and consent of the Senate.

“President Obama and Senate Democrats will no doubt call Judge Garland a ‘mainstream Federal judge’ and promise his ‘approach to deciding cases on the law and the Constitution, not politics or an ideological agenda.’ Of course, they said those exact words when liberal Justices Sotomayor and Kagan were nominated. We are one liberal Justice away from seeing gun rights restricted and partial birth abortion being considered a constitutional right. The Republican majority exists to block these type of nominees.”

Heritage Action: Fight Obama’s Overreach by Refusing to Confirm Nominees (January 2016)
Washington Examiner: Reid Blames Heritage Action for Blocking Nominees (January 2016)
Heritage Action: Statement on Death of Justice Scalia and Looming Nomination Fight (February 2016)
Heritage Action: Obama Promises ‘Moderate’ Supreme Court Justice (February 2016)

Conservatives Should Reject Budget Deal Hinging on Unenforceable Promises

Washington — As the House continues discussing a potential path forward on an FY17 budget resolution, it has become increasingly clear conservative members will be asked to vote for higher discretionary spending in exchange for promises of future action.  Heritage Action released the following statement from vice president for communications and government relations Dan Holler:

“House Republicans should put forward a serious budget that doubles down on conservative priorities and unites the party.  Adopting a budget resolution that embraces funding levels established by President Obama in exchange for promises of future action will not unite the party; in fact, it could exacerbate the anti-Washington sentiment so many members hear from their constituents.  Conservatives should reject any budget deal that hinges on unenforceable promises or the promise to finally make good on previously promised legislative action.”

Memo: House Should Pass a Conservative Budget (February 2016)
Budget Resolutions: Claims and Responses (March 2016)