DC Digest – July 18, 2017
OFFICE OF GOVERNMENT RELATIONS
- Budget Resolution Revealed
- GOP Senate Healthcare Bill Stalled
- Countdown Clock
BUDGET RESOLUTION DRAFT RELEASED
The GOP-led House Budget Committee released its budget resolution today, July 18. It had been stalled as House Budget Chairwoman Diane Black fought to win over holdouts from the House Republican caucus, which did not pass a budget resolution on the floor last year. The Budget Committee is expected to approve the proposal at a markup on Wednesday, July 19. It remains unclear whether the plan will garner enough support to pass on the House floor.
The partisan resolution is unlikely to secure Democratic votes, so Republicans can afford 22 Republican defectors on the floor.
About 30 GOP moderates have voiced disagreement with the plan because it calls for $200 billion in mandatory cuts they believe could jeopardize tax reform. The House Freedom Caucus, which has about two dozen members, has also threatened to block the budget as the group presses for steeper cuts and a clearer picture of their party’s tax overhaul strategy.
House Budget Chairwoman Diane Black insists her newly unveiled blueprint will reach the House floor, but she has stopped short of committing to passage.
“I can tell you that this budget will come out of our committee tomorrow [July 19],” Black told reporters this morning. “It will be a budget that will then come to the House floor.”
SENATE GOP HEALTHCARE BILL AT STOPPING POINT, FOR NOW
Two more GOP senators, Mike Lee of Utah and Jerry Moran of Kansas, announced they will not support the procedural vote to advance the Senate GOP Healthcare bill or Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) to the Senate Floor.
They join Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, and other Republican senators who have hesitated or opposed the measure. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s new plan is to pick the House bill back up, bring it to the floor for debate, and then swap the text for a 2015 bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act that the Senate did support back then.
So far, four senators have said they won’t begin debate on the bill, though the count could shift with the new plan.
There are 7 legislative days to go in the House and 18 in the Senate until the August recess.