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Abandoning Card Check

July 17, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

The New York Times this morning reported that the Democrats are dropping the card-check provision from the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) in an attempt to jump-start the stalled bill. While removing card check certainly helps the bill's chances, Republicans are still opposed to the binding arbitration provision that remains.

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Democrat Defecting on Helath Care in Committee

July 17, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

House Democrats are already starting to defect on the health care bill (H.R. 3200). According to subscription-only Congress Daily mark-up reports, these are the Democrats opposing the bill in the Ways and Means Committee: Rep. Earl Pomeroy [D, ND-0] Rep. Ronald Kind [D, WI-3] Rep. John Tanner [D, TN-8] Democrats opposing the bill in the Education and Labor Committee: Rep. Jason Altmire [D, PA-4] Rep. Jared Polis [D, CO-2] Rep. Dina Titus [D, NV-3] ...three of the six - Pomeroy, Ta...

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Hate Crimes Legislation, Now Riding on the DoD Bill

July 17, 2009 - by Isabelle Cutting

With a 63-28 vote last night, the Senate approved the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Bill. The amendment seeks to expand federal hate crimes laws to include bodily crimes motivated by a victim’s actual or perceived gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability.

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It's Not Not an Option

July 16, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

This editorial from Business Investor's Daily, which I noticed this morning but basically dismissed, is actually beginning to have some impact in the blogs. It's the top item on Memeorandum right now, for example. The editorial reads, in part: It's Not An Option It didn't take long to run into an "uh-oh" moment when reading the House's "health care for all Americans" bill. Right there on Page 16 is a provision making individual private medical insurance illegal. When we first saw the par...

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Fed Transparency is On a Roll

July 16, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

Ron Paul's [R, TX-14] bill to audit the Federal Reserve (H.R. 1207) has reached another landmark. Every single House Republican has now co-sponsored it. But it's not just a Republican bill. Ninety-three Democrats have co-sponsored it too. It's been referred to the House Financial Services Committee, and Chairman Rep. Barney Frank [D, MA-4] has said that there will be hearings on it before the August recess. The Senate version of the bill is not doing as well. It only has 8 co-sponsors, all Re...

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Blue Dogs Threaten to Block the Healthcare Bill

July 16, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

The America's Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009 is scheduled for three separate committee mark-ups today. In one of the committees a bloc of conservative Blue Dog Democrats is threatening to vote with Republicans to block the bill unless some major changes are made to the bill's principle provisions.

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1,018 Pages of Health Care Reform - Dig in!

July 15, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

Now that the Democrats have officially introduced into Congress a gigantic health care bill, America's Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009, it's time for the rest of us to dig in and see what's in it. We have the complete legislative text on OpenCongress and the tools that make it easy to examine it together.

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The Angelides Commission?

July 15, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

Financial Crisis, Financial Regulation

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Sotomayor Day 3

July 15, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

I won't keep pushing the embedded live video up to the top on the blog. Instead, here's a link to yesterday's post where the video is still live and you can watch what's happening today in the hearing....

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There are maybe two Republicans in the Senate who might be open to some version of Obama's health care legislation. Besides that, every Republican in Congress seems to have already decided that they will vote against any of the proposals being floated. But that doesn't mean the bill can't be passed. Democrats have a procedural option that would allow them to pass the bill without any Republican support, and the Obama Administration now is coming out sand saying that they are not afraid to use it.

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At a press conference just moments ago, House Democrats unveiled their health care reform bill. View the bill here:

H.R. 3200 – America’s Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009

The bill seeks to expand health care coverage to the approximately 40 million Americans who are currently uninsured by lowering the cost of health care and making the system more efficient.

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Ensign Will Run Again

July 14, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

The Las Vegas Sun reports: Washington — Republican Sen. John Ensign said Monday that not only does he have no intention of resigning in light of his affair and his parents’ payout to the woman’s family, he plans to seek reelection when his term is up in 2012. Ensign told the Las Vegas Sun he has received calls and e-mails of encouragement from supporters both in Nevada and Washington. When asked Monday whether he had any thoughts about stepping down, Ensign said his supporters are sendin...

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A controversial bill to extend federal hate crimes protections to victims of attacks based on gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or disabilities will get a vote in the Senate this week.

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Lockheed Martin vs. Obama's Defense Budget

July 13, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

As the Senate begins consideration of the FY10 Defense Authorization bill, the most contentious issue will be $1.75 bill for new Lockheed Martin-produced F-22s. The Obama Administration says the new jets aren't necessary, but Congress, which has many connections to the company, is so far succeeding at getting the funds approved.

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Watch the Sotomator Hearings

July 13, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

The Senate Judiciary Committee this morning is beginning their week-long series of confirmation hearings on Obama's Supreme Court nominee, Sonia Sotomayor. Most of today's hearing will be taken up by opening statements from each of the 19 members of the Judiciary Committee, and Sotomayor isn't expected to start responding to questions until late this afternoon. Click through to this post to watch the hearings live.

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