Archives for Capitol Hillbillies

Republicans, of course, unimpressed with Obama’s speech

At the dawn of an election year, congressional Republicans responded quickly and forcefully to President Barack Obama’s nationally televised vow to act on his own if lawmakers won’t cooperate on “creating new jobs, not creating new crises” in a nation with a yawning income gap. “The president must understand his power is limited by our Constitution, and the authority he has doesn’t add up to much for those without opportunity in this economy,” House Speaker John Boehner said Tuesday night after Obama’s State of the Union address before a packed House chamber and a prime-time television audience. “The real answer
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House rushing for approval of new farm bill

The House is rushing to complete work on a nearly $100 billion-a-year farm bill that would make small cuts to food stamps and continue generous subsidies for the nation’s farmers. Conservative Republicans in the House helped defeat an earlier version of the bill last summer, and some of those lawmakers hoped to do so again Wednesday, saying the $800 million in annual cuts to food stamps isn’t enough. But the final version of the five-year bill has solid backing from the House GOP leadership, even though it makes smaller cuts to food stamps than they would have liked. Leaders scheduled
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Farm deal cuts food stamps by one percent

Farm-state lawmakers are pushing for final passage of the massive, five-year farm bill as it heads to the House floor Wednesday — member by member, vote by vote. There are goodies scattered through the bill for members from all regions of the country: a boost in money for crop insurance popular in the Midwest; higher cotton and rice subsidies for Southern farmers; renewal of federal land payments for Western states. There are cuts to the food stamp program — $800 million a year, or around 1 percent — for Republicans who say the program is spending too much money, but
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Cocaine-abusing Florida Congressman calling it quits

Facing a House ethics investigation, the Florida congressman who pleaded guilty to cocaine-possession charges last year says he will resign Monday evening, after several GOP leaders requested that he step down. U.S. Rep. Trey Radel announced his impending resignation in a letter to House Speaker John Boehner, saying that while this year has “already been tremendously positive … some of my struggles had serious consequences.” He will step down Monday, effective at 6:30 p.m., the letter says. Politico first reported the upcoming resignation Monday morning. On Nov. 20, the freshman Republican pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of cocaine possession
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Arizona GOP considers John McCain ‘too liberal’

  The Arizona Republican Party formally censured Sen. John McCain on Saturday, citing a voting record they say is insufficiently conservative. The resolution to censure McCain was approved by a voice-vote during a meeting of state committee members in Tempe, state party spokesman Tim Sifert said. It needed signatures from at least 20 percent of state committee members to reach the floor for debate. Sifert said no further action was expected. McCain spokesman Brian Rogers declined to comment on the censure. But former three-term Sen. Jon Kyl told The Arizona Republic (http://bit.ly/1mIyKyy ) that the move was “wacky.” “I’ve gone
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Democrats say ‘no games’ on debt limit increase

With House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan saying Republicans will, once again, put changes in Obamacare in the way of extending the nation’s debt limit, the Democrats Friday had a quick answer:  No way. Senate Budget Committee chairwoman Patty Murray said: We will not negotiate over whether or not the United States of America should pay its bills.  “And once again, before they get any further down this damaging path, we call on our Republican colleagues to not play politics with our economic recovery. House Speaker John Boehner says Republicans will demand concessions before agreeing to any increasing in the
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Rep. Ryan issues familiar threats against Obamacare

In political rhetoric that has a familiar ring, Republican Paul Ryan of Wisconsin says his colleagues in the House of Representatives are planning another attack on Obamacare as a major part of their strategy as the nation approaches another debt limit crisis. “There are issues with Obamacare,” Ryan said in San Antonio Thursday.  A lot of folks don’t realize there could be some massive insurance company bailouts in the near future with Obamacare that a lot of taxpayers probably don’t know about that we don’t want to see happen. That’s one of the issues that’s in the realm of possibility.”
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Critics speaking out on Obama’s NSA ‘reform’

Leaders of the congressional intelligence committees are pushing back against a key part of President Barack Obama’s attempt to overhaul U.S. surveillance, saying it is unworkable for the government to let someone else control how Americans’ phone records are stored. Obama, under pressure over the controversy over government spying, said last week he wants bulk phone data stored outside the government to reduce the risk that the records will be abused. Rep. Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said Sunday that Obama had intensified a sense of uncertainty about the country’s ability to root out terrorist threats. Obama
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Congressman thinks Russia behind Snowden’s leaks

The head of the U.S. House of Representatives Intelligence Committee said on Sunday he is investigating whether former spy agency contractor Edward Snowden had help from Russia in stealing and revealing U.S. government secrets. “I believe there’s a reason he ended up in the hands – the loving arms – of an FSB agent in Moscow. I don’t think that’s a coincidence,” U.S. Representative Mike Rogers told the NBC program “Meet the Press,” referring to the Russian intelligence agency that is a successor of the Soviet-era KGB. Snowden last year fled the United States to Hong Kong and then to
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Lawmakers say Obama’s NSA changes won’t work

A chief element of President Barack Obama’s attempt to overhaul U.S. surveillance will not work, leaders of Congress’ intelligence committees said Sunday, pushing back against the idea that the government should cede control of how Americans’ phone records are stored. Obama, under pressure to calm the controversy over government spying, said Friday he wants bulk phone data stored outside the government to reduce the risk that the records will be abused. The president said he will require a special judge’s advance approval before intelligence agencies can examine someone’s data and will force analysts to keep their searches closer to suspected
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