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Category Archives: Congress

GOP stalls vote on repeal and replace of Obama health care act

Follow up to previous postings cited in Senate version of House health care repeal and replace bill eliminates coverage for 22 million Americans – tonight via Dan Balz, the Washington Post – ‘Repeal and replace’ was once a unifier for the GOP. Now it’s an albatross. “After seven years, Republicans’ promise to overhaul the Affordable Care Act remains a sprawling objective still in search of a solution. The effort also has now cost the Trump administration precious months of its first year in office, with tax reform and other priorities left unresolved…”

  • Estimates: Average Monthly Premium after Tax Credit Would Be 74% Higher Under Senate Health Bill in 2020 – In 8 States, Average Benchmark Premium after Tax Credit Would Be More than 100% Higher, Analysis Finds – A new analysis from the Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that the average monthly premium for a benchmark silver plan after tax credits in 2020 would be 74 percent higher under the Senate’s Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) compared to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Overall, most marketplace enrollees would pay higher premiums under the Senate bill than current law, the analysis finds. Older and lower-income enrollees would see the biggest increases, with people age 55-64 paying 115 percent more under the Senate bill and people with incomes under 200% of the federal poverty level paying 177 percent more…”

Senate version of House health care repeal and replace bill eliminates coverage for 22 million Americans

Follow up to previous posting – Senate Republicans release draft Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017, today via the CBO – “The Congressional Budget Office and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) have completed an estimate of the direct spending and revenue effects of the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017, a… Continue Reading

Senate Republicans release draft Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017

The 142 page discussion draft (bill), titled the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 was released at 11am on April 22, 2017 to the entire Senate who with the exception of 13 Senators, had not been engaged in its creation nor had prior access to its content. The goal of the bill is to replace… Continue Reading

Senate Intel Cmte will obtain Trump banking records from Treasury

ABC News: Senate investigators will receive a trove of banking records from the Treasury Department that lawmakers believe could help shed light on any business dealings involving campaign aides and other advisers to President Trump, Sen. Ron Wyden told ABC News on Tuesday. “The stack of press reports gets higher every day regarding financial connections… Continue Reading

Books Analyzes How America’s Top 20 Percent Perpetuates Inequality

Boston Review – This essay is excerpted with permission from Dream Hoarders: How the American Upper Middle Class Is Leaving Everyone Else in the Dust, Why That Is a Problem, and What to Do About It by Richard Reeves, Brookings Institution Press, 2017. “In January 2015, Barack Obama suffered an acute political embarrassment. A proposal from the… Continue Reading

Analysis – Emerging Senate Repeal Bill Eviscerates Protections for Millions in Employer Plans Nationwide

Center for American Progress – By Topher Spiro and Emily Gee: “This week Axios reported that the emerging Senate bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will allow states to waive coverage of essential health benefits for small employer and individually purchased plans. In waiver states, this cut in benefits would be catastrophic for… Continue Reading

Questions increase over determining extent of Russia election hacking

NPR – If Voting Machines Were Hacked, Would Anyone Know? – “As new reports emerge about Russian-backed attempts to hack state and local election systems [Link], U.S. officials are increasingly worried about how vulnerable American elections really are. While the officials say they see no evidence that any votes were tampered with, no one knows… Continue Reading

Availability of Legislative Measures in House of Representatives (The “Three-Day Rule”)

CRS – Availability of Legislative Measures in the House of Representatives (The “Three-Day Rule”), Elizabeth Rybicki, Specialist on Congress and the Legislative Process. June 12, 2017 [via FAS] “House rules govern the length of time legislative measures must be available to Members before being considered on the floor. For measures reported from committee, the committee… Continue Reading

CRS – Special Counsels, Independent Counsels, and Special Prosecutors: Options for Independent Executive Investigations

Special Counsels, Independent Counsels, and Special Prosecutors: Options for Independent Executive Investigations, June 1, 2017 [via FAS] “Under the Constitution, Congress has no direct role in federal law enforcement and its ability to initiate appointments of any prosecutors to address alleged wrongdoings by executive officials is limited. While Congress retains broad oversight and investigatory powers… Continue Reading

CRS – President Trump’s Withdrawal from the Paris Agreement Raises Legal Question

President Trump’s Withdrawal from the Paris Agreement Raises Legal Questions, CRS Legal Sidebar, June 9, 2017. [via FAS] “On June 1, President Trump announced his long-anticipated decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris Agreement—an international agreement intended to reduce the effects of climate change by maintaining global temperatures “well below 2°C above pre-industrial… Continue Reading

Agency scorecard on IT reform registers uniform decline

Nextgov: “For the first time since Congress began composing biannual scorecards ranking agency progress adhering to the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act in 2015, agency grades have dropped. Released prior to [the June 13, 2017] 2 p.m. House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing, 15 agencies held steady, four agencies improved and five fared… Continue Reading

Flow of information on hacking of US election escalates

Bloomberg: “Russia’s cyberattack on the U.S. electoral system before Donald Trump’s election was far more widespread than has been publicly revealed, including incursions into voter databases and software systems in almost twice as many states as previously reported. In Illinois, investigators found evidence that cyber intruders tried to delete or alter voter data. The hackers… Continue Reading