Morning Action: Liberals Bring Us One Step Closer to Amnesty in the Senate
AMNESTY. Monday, the Senate voted 67 to 27 to end debate on the Schumer-Corker-Hoeven amendment and move forward:
The 67-to-27 vote was considered a key test of support for the bill as a whole, as the measure also includes language echoing most other parts of the legislation.
The Senate kept the vote open for a significant amount of time for lawmakers who experienced travel delays due to bad weather in Washington. Some senators did not make it in time.
Supporters needed at least 60 votes to move forward with the revised border security provisions, which were drafted partly to boost GOP support for the overall package.
This move was extremely ill advised. The amendment in question was not a “game changer” as it had been called. Some aspects of the amendment may sound good on paper, but as Heritage explains, “none of the border security measures in the Schumer–Corker–Hoeven amendment have to be in place until illegal immigrants with registered provisional immigrant status are to receive green cards 10 years down the road.”
Simply put, the amendment fails to change the Senate’s fundamental approach: amnesty now and border security maybe somewhere down the road. Heritage explains that there are better solutions to our immigration system’s flaws.
WAR ON COAL. A scientific adviser to President Obama has literally called for a “war on coal.”
“The one thing the president really needs to do now is to begin the process of shutting down the conventional coal plants,” Daniel P. Schrag, a member of the President’s Council of Advisers on Science and Technology, told the New York Times. ”Politically, the White House is hesitant to say they’re having a war on coal. On the other hand, a war on coal is exactly what’s needed.”
The remarks come on the eve of a much-anticipated climate change speech from the president Tuesday at Georgetown University.
Heritage explains that this is truly a “war on American families, businesses, and jobs.”
Regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Department of Interior, and the Department of Labor have been labeled President Barack Obama’s “war on coal.” A more precise label would be a “war on American families, businesses, and jobs.” Unnecessarily and artificially eliminating coal as a reliable, affordable energy source would dramatically harm the economy.
If the regulations on the coal industry are allowed to stand, they will almost certainly destroy the coal industry, with predictable, undesirable economic effects on the rest of the country.
Tomorrow, the President’s speech on climate change will likely discuss the Environmental Protection Agency’s carbon dioxide regulations on new power plants and announce CO2 regulations on existing power plants. Implementing those regulations along with other EPA regulations—such as the utility MACT rule, Cross State Air Pollution rule, coal ash regulations, and national ambient air quality standards—would make building a new coal plant extremely difficult, while significantly decreasing the lifespan of existing plants.
A-PLUS. Heritage explains that the conservative alternative to No Child Left Behind (NCLB) has been introduced in both the House and Senate and outlines the positive aspects of the legislation:
The Academic Partnerships Lead Us to Success Act (A-PLUS) would allow states to completely opt out of the programs that fall under NCLB and empower state and local leaders to direct funding to their most pressing education needs.
Specifically, A-PLUS would send funding under NCLB back to states in the form of block grants, and states would then be able to direct that funding to any education purpose under state law.
Such flexibility restores state-level decision making and reflects a level of federal intervention in education proportionate with Washington’s 10 percent share in its financing.
MARRIAGE. The Supreme Court is expected to rule in challenges to state and federal laws that define marriage as the union of one man and one woman sometime this week. In light of the forthcoming decision, Heritage has outlined the ways that YOU can both prepare and respond to the various possible outcomes.