Morning Action: Conservatives Urge House Leaders to Defund Obamacare
OBAMACARE. Conservative leaders have sent a coalition letter to House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) urging the House to defund Obamacare:
We the undersigned organizations and individuals urge House Republicans to include language fully defunding Obamacare when they consider their upcoming legislation to fund the government for Fiscal Year 2014.
The best and last chance for House Republicans to stand up and thwart this law before its new entitlements kick in is during the upcoming funding debate, and the House should live up to the moment and pass a bill funding the government but denying any funding for Obamacare.
DEAD FARMERS. A Watchdog report finds that the government has paid millions in taxpayer dollars to dead farmers:
The Government Accountability Office estimated in a new report that agencies within the department may have paid more than $30 million to thousands of deceased recipients between 2008 and 2012. The findings come as Congress tries to pass a new farm bill, and could stir concerns among conservatives that the government’s many subsidy programs are not being carefully managed.
The GAO found that at two agencies that play a big role in aid for farmers, until changes are made “these agencies cannot know if they are providing payments to, or subsidies on behalf of, deceased individuals.”
The report found that at the Risk Management Agency, which deals with crop insurance, a review of payments showed $22 million may have gone to more than 3,400 individuals “two or more years after death.”
RELIGIOUS LIBERTY. Ryan T. Anderson explains that the effort to redefine marriage may threaten religious liberty, which is precisely what happened in other countries that chose to redefine marriage:
Advocates of redefining marriage contend that the First Amendment ensures that pastors, priests, and other clergy in America will remain free to preach what they want to — they will never be forced to celebrate a same-sex wedding, and liberals suggest that this is the extent of the challenge to religious liberty posed by the redefinition of marriage.
To the contrary, if marriage is redefined, then a belief that marriage is the union of a man and a woman ordered to procreation and family life — a notion once shared by virtually every human society — would increasingly be characterized as an irrational prejudice that ought to be driven to the margins of culture. The consequences for religious believers are becoming apparent.
Ted Cruz looked to other countries for examples, but he easily could have cited a growing number of incidents in the United States.
Thomas Messner, a visiting fellow at the Heritage Foundation, has documented multiple instances in which laws forbidding discrimination based on sexual orientation, as well as laws redefining marriage, have already eroded religious liberty and the rights of conscience.
NLRB. The Senate will vote today on whether to limit debate on President Obama’s National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) nominees (sub. req’d):
The chamber votes on whether to limit debate on the nomination of Kent Yoshiho Hirozawa to be a member of the National Labor Relations Board. Absent a time agreement, senators will next vote to invoke cloture on the nominations of Nancy Jean Schiffer and Mark Gaston Pearce to be members of the NLRB.