r960-cf9112f097e7c4644c1b5f0e4febd5e3.jpg


The Senate next week plans to move rapidly to confirm another wave of Trump administration appointments, even as it races against a 60-day clock to repeal a slew of Obama administration regulations.

The week is expected to start in earnest with Vice President Mike Pence casting an historic tie-breaking vote Tuesday in favor of Education Secretary nominee Betsy DeVos, a wealthy GOP fundraiser and school choice advocate who could only attract the support of 50 out of 52 GOP lawmakers.

Senate GOP leaders say once DeVos is confirmed, they’ll move to a vote on Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., who is Trump’s pick to head the Department of Justice, followed by Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., the nominee to head Health and Human Services. Republicans say they will then move to confirm Treasury Secretary nominee Steve Mnuchin.

Battling weeks of procedural delays by Senate Democrats, the GOP-majority has threatened to extend legislative business into next weekend in order to confirm Trump’s cabinet appointments.

“Given the intransigence of our friends across the aisle, we are probably only going to be able to do about three confirmations a week,” Majority Whip John Cornyn, R-Texas., told the Washington Examiner. “But we are just going to grind them out.”

In addition to nominees, senators will vote on a string of measures to roll back Obama administration rules. They will do so utilizing the increasingly less-obscure Congressional Review Act, which allows them to wipe regulations off the books with a simple majority vote if they were put in place by the president within 60 legislative days.

With time running out, the Senate plans to take up some or all of several measures passed last week by the House. The list, which has not been finalized, could include the Methane and Waste Prevention Rule, which requires oil and gas producers to cut in half the amount of natural gas that leaks out of wells on public and tribal lands. Critics say the rule is redundant, as the industry is already subject to the Clean Air Act, and it will stifle the industry with additional costs.

The Senate may also consider a vote to repeal an Obama administration rule banning gun purchases for Social Security recipients who are not competent to manage their own affairs.

On the House side of the Capitol, lawmakers will have a shorter week to accommodate a Democratic retreat. But the House is still expected to make progress on other CRA-related measures before time runs out.

GOP tries to find right 'R' word in Obamacare debate

Also from the Washington Examiner

Republicans are pushing back on claims that they are softening their language about Obamacare’s future.

02/05/17 12:00 AM

The House plans to take up a measure to repeal a Department of Education rule that, according to the GOP, “significantly expands the federal government’s involvement in teacher preparation,” and could result in fewer teachers serving in the neediest school districts. House lawmakers will also vote on repealing a rule Republicans say “dictates prescriptive accountability requirements” for schools, in violation of a new federal education law that restored more local control over education.

“This bipartisan law empowered states to hold schools accountable but somehow when the regulation came out, there was an expanded federal role,” said Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif. “This was not what Congress intended, nor was it best for our students.”

Before adjourning next week, the House will take up a third repeal measure, sponsored by freshman Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., that would repeal an Interior Department rule relating to the Bureau of Land Management regulations for land use.

Cheney said the rule, “undermines local land management, dilutes the authority of our county commissioners, and opens up the possibility that foreign non-governmental organizations would have input in Wyoming’s land use management planning process.”

Trump on Putin being a 'killer': 'What do you think — our country's so innocent?'

Also from the Washington Examiner

The president was asked about Russia’s Putin being a “killer.”

02/04/17 8:09 PM

Justice Department to appeal judge's order to block Trump's travel ban

Top Story

Notice sent about 24 hours after judge ordered the restraining order.

02/04/17 7:27 PM



Source link

About the Author:

Leave a Reply