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  • House and Senate Cloakroom: March 22 – 26, 2010

    House Cloakroom: March 22 – 26, 2010


    House members are staying in town through the weekend as health care continues to hang over everyone’s heads.  The House Rules Committee is tentatively scheduled to meet tomorrow to consider the now infamous “Slaughter rule” which would deem the Senate bill passed before they move on to the reconciliation bill.  Speaker Pelosi summed up her approval of this measure by saying “I like it, this scenario, because people don’t have to vote on the Senate bill.” On Sunday the House is then expected to meet to pass the Slaughter rule and then immediately proceed to debate and soon after that vote on the House reconciliation package to amend the Senate bill with a previously House passed student loan bill.  It is important to note that the House will be doing this without a full economic score of the legislation from the Congressional Budget Office. Additionally, while the Rules Committee is getting ready for the big show on Saturday, the rest of the House will be focusing its attention on a $16.8 billion tax incentive bill targeted at small business and state and local governments.

    Major Floor Action:

    • Slaughter Rule to deem the Senate bill passed.
    • House Reconciliation package (HR 4872) with revised Senate passed health care bill and student loan bill (HR 3221).
    • HR 4849 Small Business and Infrastructure Jobs Tax Act of 2010

    Major Committee Action:

    • The House Natural Resources Committee Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources will hold an oversight hearing on the fiscal 2011 budget requests for the Mineral Management Services, the Bureau of Land Management, the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, and the United States Geological Survey. A recent blog post outlines how these agencies impact the west.
    • The Ways and Means will hold a hearing on china exchange rate policy.  Derek Scissors, Research Fellow for Asia Economic Policy outlined what won’t work with china and what might here.

    Senate Cloakroom: March 22 – 26, 2010


    The Senate stands on high alert, prepared for the equivalent of legislative nuclear war.  If the House successfully pulls off the deem-and-pass gimmick on Obamacare, the Senate will deal with a reconciliation measure that raises $155 billion in taxes, cuts sweetheart deals and takes over the student loan industry.  The House process clearly undermines the rule of law and the Senate process gimmicks are clearly undermining the will of the people.  Conservatives in the Senate, and those who respect the rule of law and their constituents, are likely to use every tool at their disposal to prevent the reconciliation measure from going to the President’s desk should the House succeed with deem-and-pass.

    Major Floor Action:

    • On Monday, the Senate will complete consideration of FAA reauthorization.
    • If Speaker Pelosi successfully rams Obamacare through the House, the Senate will spend the remainder of the week debating and amending the reconciliation measure.

    Major Committee Action:

    Because of the potential for near constant voting that will be required during consideration of Obamacare’s reconciliation measure, major committee action is unlikely.  However, Banking Chairman Chris Dodd (D-CT) has pledged to begin the markup of his latest problematic bank overhaul plan Monday afternoon.

    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

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