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Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year]
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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Obama Rushing Job-Killing EPA Regulations; Reid And Senate Dems Block GOP From Making Amendments To Stop Them

Today in Washington. D.C. - March 8, 2014
The House reconvened at 10 AM today.
Today the House will consider:
H. Res. 567 - Providing for the Establishment of the Select Committee on the Events Surrounding the 2012 Terrorist Attack in Benghazi.
H.R. 10 - "to amend the charter school program under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965
H.R. 4438 "to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to simplify and make permanent the research credit; and for other purposes."

Yesterday the House passed
H. Res. 418 (Voice Vote) — "Urging the Government of Burma to end the persecution of the Rohingya people and respect internationally recognized human rights for all ethnic and religious minority groups within Burma."
H.R. 863 (383 - 33) — "To establish the Commission to Study the Potential Creation of a National Women's History Museum, and for other purposes."

In hotly contested issues addressing the IRS's abuse of authority and attempts to deceive Congress, the following resolutions were also passed.
H. Res. 565 (250 - 168) — "Calling on Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr., to appoint a special counsel to investigate the targeting of conservative nonprofit groups by the Internal Revenue Service."
H. Res. 574 (231 - 187) — "Recommending that the House of Representatives find Lois G. Lerner, former Director, Exempt Organizations, Internal Revenue Service, in contempt of Congress for refusal to comply with a subpoena duly issued by the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform." Six Democrats joined Republicans in voting for the Contempt citation.

While conservatives took a principles stand, it is doubtful that AG Eric Holder will do anything. Recall that AG Eric Holder has also been held in "contempt of Congress." Jay Sekulow ia Chief counsel at the American Center for Law and Justice and represented 41 TEA party groups targeted by the IRS scandle. Regarding AG Holder taking action, Sekulow said, “Sadly, he has put politics above the enforcement of the law on numerous occasions and unfortunately that is likely to occur again.”

The Senate reconvened at 9:30 AM today. At 11:15, the Senate began a series of votes on cloture on the nominations of 3 district judges: Indira Talwani, to be United States District Judge for the District of Massachusetts, James D. Peterson, to be United States District Judge for the Western District of Wisconsin, and Nancy J. Rosenstengel, to be United States District Judge for the Southern District of Illinois. Democrats are again using the precedent they broke Senate rules to establish last fall by using the nuclear option to allow cloture votes on nominations to succeed with only 51 votes.

Cloture was invoked on all three nominees and at 1:45, confirmation votes are scheduled on the three nominations.

Following those votes, the Senate is scheduled to vote on cloture on the nomination of Robin S. Rosenbaum, to be U.S. Circuit Judge for the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals and then on confirmation of the nomination of Theodore Mitchell to be Under Secretary of Education.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) is again blocking Republicans from offering amendments to the energy efficiency bill, S. 2262.

Yesterday, Republicans tried twice to voted down the logjam amendments Reid is using to fill the amendment tree, but both times majority Democrats voted with Reid to keep blocking any amendments from being offered to the bill.

The AP reports today, “Within weeks, President Barack Obama's administration is set to unveil unprecedented emissions limits on power plants across the U.S., much to the dismay of many Democratic candidates who are running for election in energy-producing states. . . . Unlike the Keystone XL oil pipeline, whose review the administration has delayed, probably until after November's elections, the clock is ticking for the power plant rules — the cornerstone of Obama's campaign to curb climate change. Unless he starts now, the rules won't be in place before he leaves office, making it easier for his successor to stop them. . . . Obama's counselor on climate issues, John Podesta, affirmed that the proposal will be unveiled in early June — just as this year's general election is heating up. . . . Last year, the administration proposed the first-ever carbon dioxide limits on newly built power plants, drawing fierce criticism from energy advocates from both parties who say the technology to capture enough pollution to meet those standards isn't yet commercially viable. Climate activists say the next step — rules cracking down on existing plants — are even more critical to curbing the pollutants blamed for global warming.”

With the Obama administration racing to write these new job-killing regulations, it’s more important than ever that the Senate weigh in and block these ill-conceived rules. But the Senate Democrat majority is determined to protect the president’s actions from scrutiny and prevent Americans from a check on the executive branch’s costly regulations through their representatives in the Senate.

Just yesterday afternoon, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell called on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) to take up a measure that he, Senators David Vitter (R-LA) and John Hoeven (R-ND) introduced to stop the Obama Administration’s Environmental Protection Agency from moving forward with its anti-coal jobs carbon regulations. Their amendment would halt the Administration from moving forward with new regulations on coal-fired power plants — until the technology required to comply with the regulations is commercially viable — which it currently is not.

But of course Reid immediately blocked this attempt and continues to prevent any amendments to the energy bill currently on the floor. As Leader McConnell said yesterday, “... the Majority Leader is shutting down the voice of the people in the Senate. For seven long years, he’s refused to allow a truly comprehensive debate on energy in this chamber. . . . Apparently, he doesn’t think the American people deserve a vote on a single energy amendment. Apparently, he doesn’t think the American Middle Class — which is being squeezed by rising energy costs and over-the-top government regulations — needs the kind of relief Republicans are proposing. And he clearly must not think the people of Eastern Kentucky deserve our help either. Kentuckians in the eastern part of my state are experiencing a depression that the President’s energy policies are making worse. And now, the Administration has proposed new rules that would make life even harder for them – rules that would make it effectively impossible to build another coal plant anywhere in the country. Coal is a vital industry to our economy and to the livelihoods of thousands of people in my state. We should be allowed to help them. But the Majority Leader said no.”

And that’s not the only thing Democrats are obstructing. As the AP noted yesterday, “Senate Democrats are refusing to let supporters of the Keystone XL oil pipeline to use an energy efficiency bill as a vehicle to attempt winning congressional approval for the controversial project. Majority Leader Harry Reid used a parliamentary move Wednesday to block a Republican amendment on the pipeline as well as a measure to prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from imposing new greenhouse gas regulations on coal-burning power plants.”

Fed up, Leader McConnell blasted Democrats for their unseriousness and elevation of political posturing over all else in the Senate that they control. “The American people send us to Washington to debate serious issues. They expect us to take our jobs seriously and to develop effective solutions to the issues that matter to them. . . . Instead of a forum for debate and resolution of the most pressing domestic and international issues facing our nation, [the Senate has] become fodder for late-night TV. When the American people turn on C-SPAN these days, they don’t often see a Majority Party driving serious debate on the issues of the day. They hear bizarre monologues about greased pigs and a couple of Kansans the Majority Leader seems to see around every corner. They see a daily display of absurd political theater that has almost no relevance at all to their daily lives. It’s disgraceful. But it’s no surprise either, since the Democrat Majority clearly ran out of ideas a long time ago. . . . Senate Democrats are afraid to expose their party’s empty playbook — so they play games instead. They fill the time with aimless diatribes against private citizens and legislative theatrics that are more about satisfying their liberal patrons than addressing the real concerns and anxieties of the American Middle Class. . . .

“[A]s Washington Democrats seek to preserve their hold on power, they’ve become increasingly untethered from the daily concerns of average Americans. That’s why you’re seeing the Senate lose its sense of purpose. And that’s why you’re not seeing any real debates. Instead of listening to the needs of the Middle Class, they dance to the tune of the Left. That’s why you see Senate Democrats pushing legislation that could cost up to a million jobs – at a time when the Middle Class is practically begging us to help create jobs. That’s why you see Senate Democrats basically boasting that their legislative agenda was drafted by campaign staffers with no shame at all. And that’s why you see Senate Democrats killing job creation bills the House sends us, without even so much as a vote. No wonder the American people are so disgusted with Washington. . . . The way the Senate operates these days is a travesty. No real debate, no amendments, and no respect for the millions of Americans represented by the minority party. It’s become an arm of the Democrat Senatorial Campaign Committee. We owe the American people so much better than that.”

Tags: Obama Administration, Job-killing, EPA Regulations, House, Lois Learner, contempt of Congress To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 12:35 PM - Post Link


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