Today the House will vote on S. 1557, which would reauthorize the Children’s Hospital Graduate Medical Education (CHGME) program for five years. The bill passed the Senate under unanimous consent on November 12th, and it is coming to the House floor under suspension of the rules – an expedited process generally reserved for noncontroversial measures.
But should reauthorizing this program be considered noncontroversial?
In February, Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) 100% introduced the Welfare Reform and Upward Mobility Act (S. 2015). This bill would “address the deep problems in the federal government’s welfare programs that make it more difficult for low-income Americans to work their way into the middle class and stay there.”
Unlike President Obama and the liberals in Congress who think that raising the minimum wage is the only way to address poverty, this bill actually takes aim at helping America’s low-income individuals. By implementing new work requirements for the food stamp program and capping welfare spending, S. 2015 works towards increasing self-sufficiency and reducing government dependence.
Today, President Obama released his fiscal year 2015 budget, which increases spending by $791 billion over 10 years, according to the Senate and House Budget Committee Republican analysis. It would add $8.3 trillion to the debt over 10 years. It would never balance. Heritage Action CEO Mike Needham responded with a statement:
President Obama’s budget will no doubt be greeted with cheers from the entrenched special interests that thrive off an ever growing government, but it will do nothing for Americans struggling in this economy. The American people deserve bold policies that restore economic vitality, renew the American Dream, and equip people to achieve happiness and prosperity.
Want better roads for all states without raising taxes?
That’s what Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA) 81% promised us at the Heritage Action Conservative Policy Summit if his bill, the Transportation Empowerment Act (TEA) (H.R. 3486) becomes law. He said his bill will “make life better for every day Americans,” and he made a compelling case.
My Foundry piece this week explains the clean debt ceiling suspension is just the beginning of a sustained effort to abdicate fiscal responsibility. Some Republicans are discussing the possibility of reinstating the “Gephardt Rule,” a mechanism that allowed for approval of legislation increasing the nation’s statutory debt limit without an actual vote in the U.S. House of Representatives. Reinstating this rule would supposedly allow lawmakers to avoid periodic debt ceiling dramas, to the detriment of the American people:
America established a statutory debt ceiling in 1917 as part of the Second Liberty Bond Act. According to the non-partisan Congressional Research Services, the debt ceiling “imposes a form of fiscal accountability that compels Congress and the President to take visible action to allow further federal borrowing when the federal government spends more than it collects in revenues.”