The Republicans, now led from behind by House Speaker John Boehner, are painting themselves into a tiny corner. Boehner may have secured his job as speaker but he has categorically rejected any hope of a grand bargain, thereby leading his party in a rejection of America’s middle class. Unless he can be persuaded by Republican senators and a few dozen of his House colleagues to accept a balanced deal with the president and the Democrats he will severely harm his party by appealing only to the Tea Party.
Leaving the White House after the meeting with the president, Speaker Boehner dug in his heels against the closing of any tax loopholes or raising any revenue. Hasn’t he learned anything since the election?
Look at what has happened to the Republicans. Democrats have a 22 point advantage (according to the NBC/Wall Street Journal poll) on who would look out for the middle class, the largest margin in 20 years. The same poll found that 36 percent of the public viewed the Republicans favorably in October of 2012, only 29 percent view them favorably today—a remarkable drop in just four months.
At least seven nude protesters stormed House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) office in the Longworth House Office Building on Tuesday, according to reports from Sahil Kapur of Talking Points Memo and others who were there. The group was protesting cuts to HIV/AIDS funding that is possible as part of the fiscal cliff negotiations.
I love civil disobedience that causes enough outrage to get your/the media’s attention, but leaves no lasting damage.
Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr’s brother Jonathan says the congressman will send House Speaker John Boehner a letter of resignation.
Jackson, 47, a South Side Democrat, has been treated for bipolar depression and has been on a medical leave from Congress since June. He has been under investigation by federal authorities for alleged misuse of campaign dollars and also has faced a congressional ethics probe.
It’s not surprising McDonald would take that line. Across the country, Catholic schools are being shuttered as more and more parents realize that the public schools are doing a good job and that the money they’re spending on Catholic school tuition might be better socked away in a college fund.
Church officials are essentially seeking a taxpayer-funded bailout for their flagging school system – a system that even many church members have decided they don’t want to patronize. One wonders if McDonald has ever heard of the law of supply and demand?
The issue of accountability is also interesting. My guess is that, given the religious make-up of Tennessee, many of the schools taking part in a voucher plan will be aligned with fundamentalist Christianity. What type of science will these schools teach? What type of history? How will the students who attend them perform on standardized tests? Will they be able to get into colleges?
But the elephant in the room is Islamic schools. Will the state fund those as well with its vouchers?
Beth Harwell, speaker of the Tennessee House of Representatives, was asked about this recently by the Marshall Tribune. One gets the impression that Harwell was a bit uncomfortable answering the question.
‘I think it would be a constitutional issue,’ Harwell said. She added, ‘It is one that we would have to weigh very carefully as a legislature.’
Still fumbling, Harwell then said, ‘I think that, in itself, causes real alarm in the halls of the legislature. Having said that, I think we will seriously look at vouchers…. All those concerns are valid ones, legitimate ones. There is no easy answer.’
Alarm bells? Do you think? This is the state, after all, where residents actually went to court to try to stop a mosque from opening in Murfreesboro.
And don’t think this is a theoretical matter. Two Islamic schools in Washington, D.C., have received taxpayer funding under House Speaker John Boehner’s federally funded voucher program for the District of Columbia. Courts have been clear on this matter: Benefits that are extended to one religion must be made available to all.
Harwell says they is no ‘easy answer’ to problems like this. Sure there is: Don’t pass a voucher plan. Focus funding on public schools. If some of the public schools are experiencing problems, give them the support and resources they need to improve.
House Republican Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) announced Friday that after next week, the House will stand in recess until November 13. His plan for a nearly two month vacation will undoubtedly allow more time for campaigning, but will leave several vital bills awaiting action.
Among the important legislation the House will likely not address before the November elections:
1. Violence Against Women Act re-authorization. Though a bipartisan Senate majority passed the a strong re-authorization bill in April, the Republican House leadership refused to allow a vote on the Senate version of the bill. The House passed a watered down version on a mostly-party lines vote, leaving victims to wait for House action.
2. The American Jobs Act. Republicans have been blocking President Obama’s jobs legislation for more than a year. Though House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) promised in 2010 that a GOP Congress would focus on job creation, he has blocked this bill’s immediate infrastructure investments, tax credits for working Americans and employers, and aid to state and local governments to prevent further layoffs of teachers, firefighters, police
A bill that Republican leaders were promoting as the centerpiece of their job-creation agenda has instead turned into one of their biggest headaches, thanks largely to tea party conservatives who want to get the federal government out of transportation programs and hand them over to the states.
The House and Senate are heading toward a showdown next week that could result in a cutoff of federal highway and transit aid to states just as the spring construction season starts. The government’s authority to spend money from the trust fund that pays for transportation programs, as well as its power to levy the federal gasoline and diesel taxes that feed the fund expire on March 31. Democrats estimate as many as 1.8 million jobs supported by those programs are at risk.
Neither side wants a shutdown, but House Speaker John Boehner has been unable to recruit enough Republicans to pass the GOP’s overhaul of federal highway programs. The biggest group of holdouts are conservatives who want highway programs to be paid for entirely by federal gas and diesel taxes even though that might mean a nearly 40 percent cut in spending, because revenue from those taxes has declined.
A 39-year-old man charged in connection with threatening letters containing white powder that were sent to members of Congress and some media organizations was arrested Friday.
Investigators said Christopher Lee Carlson was indicted on two criminal counts arising out of an investigation into the mailing of about 100 envelopes containing white powder.
The letters, postmarked in Portland, Ore., so far have all tested negative for toxic substances, the U.S. Attorney’s office in Portland said.
A federal grand jury indictment returned Friday in Portland charged Carlson, described as being from the Portland-Vancouver, Wash., area.
The U.S. Capitol Police said in a statement that Carlson was arrested at a home in the Portland area.
Carlson was charged with one count of mailing a threatening communication to a member of Congress. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, was referenced by name. The second count charged the man with mailing a letter threatening to use a biological weapon to a U.S. senator. Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md. was named in that count.
Carlson is expected to be arraigned Monday.
Investigators have recovered more than 100 letters addressed to U.S. senators and representatives. The Seattle office of Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., said it also received one.
As the deadline neared last month for the congressional “supercommittee” on deficit reduction, House Speaker John Boehner defended a proposal by GOP members against criticism that it broke the party’s pledge on taxes.
The proposal called for higher tax revenues in exchange for lowered tax rates. Boehner called it a “fair offer” that would begin reform of the tax code, to “make America more competitive and produce more economic growth.”
“It’s important for us to reform the tax code,” the Ohio Republican told reporters. “We’ve got a personal tax system that’s so complicated it costs Americans about $500 billion a year to comply with the current tax code.”
That statement rang a bell for PolitiFact Ohio, and we decided to take a look.
The claim is similar to a remark Texas Gov. Rick Perry made Oct. 28, 2011, during the New Hampshire speech that became famous for its animated banter and went viral online.
“You know, we spend half a trillion dollars a year in tax preparation,” he said. “Any accountants or tax lawyers out there — I’m sorry, dude, but that’s too much money, a half a trillion dollars.”
PolitiFact took a look at Perry’s statement, starting with a 2005 paper by the Tax Foundation, a business-backed group that studies tax issues. Boehner’s staff acknowledged that was their source for the information, just as did Perry’s campaign staff.