House Republicans

House Budget Being Drafted Despite Nearly Insurmountable Obstacles
Topline spending levels, no path to reconciliation among reasons lawmakers to oppose

Budget Chairman Steve Womack, R-Ark., is writing a fiscal 2019 budget resolution despite major obstacles to passing it. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Obstacles to House Republicans passing a fiscal 2019 budget resolution appear insurmountable and have some members questioning why the Budget Committee is even planning to write one. 

Exactly half of the 22 Republicans on the Budget panel — more than enough to block a partisan budget resolution — voted against last week’s budget deal that set fiscal 2019 topline spending levels of $647 billion for defense and $597 billion for nondefense. Under the agreement, House and Senate leaders committed that if their chambers decide to advance fiscal 2019 budget resolutions, they would write them to those topline numbers.

Freedom Caucus Fires Fresh Warning Shots to Ryan on Immigration ‘Consequences’
‘It is the defining moment for this speaker,’ HFC Chairman Mark Meadows said

Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho, walks down the House steps after the final votes of the week on Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Freedom Caucus leaders fired off fresh warning shots Wednesday to Speaker Paul D. Ryan that there will be repercussions if he moves an immigration measure that runs contrary to what President Donald Trump and conservative Republicans campaigned on in 2016. 

“It is the defining moment for this speaker,” HFC Chairman Mark Meadows said. “If he gets it wrong, it will have consequences for him, but it will also have consequences for the rest of the party.”

House GOP to Whip Goodlatte Immigration Bill Wednesday
If vote count is positive, leadership intends to bring measure to the floor

Virginia Rep. Robert W. Goodlatte’s immigration bill would go to the House floor soon if Wednesday’s whip check is successful. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Do House Republicans have an immigration bill they could pass before the March 5 expiration of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program that would get President Donald Trump’s signature?

The answer to that question will become clear Wednesday as the GOP whip team conducts a formal check on the only House measure that has Trump’s backing. If the whip count is favorable, GOP leaders will bring it to the floor, a House leadership aide confirmed. 

Ryan Offers Immigration Commitment But Not One Pelosi Wants
Speaker says he does not want to risk a veto, even of a bipartisan bill

Speaker Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., says he is committed to consider an immigration issue, but that does not appear to be enough for House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Speaker Paul D. Ryan on Thursday offered a commitment to consider immigration legislation, but it’s not the one House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi requested.

“I can’t speak to what our rule is going to look like,” Ryan said. “I can say that we are going to bring a DACA bill to the floor because we want a solution to this problem.”

House GOP Plan Likely to Set Up Funding Bill Volley with Senate
House Democrats retreat may fall victim to latest funding strategy

Republican Study Committee Chairman Mark Walker said the plan to fully fund the Defense Department through the end of fiscal 2018 while keeping the remaining agencies running on a stopgap schedule was “the right move.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Republican leaders on Monday finally agreed to execute a government funding strategy conservatives and defense hawks have been pushing for months: fully fund the Department of Defense through the end of fiscal 2018 while keep the remaining agencies running through a fifth a stopgap measure.

The play call in advance of the Feb. 8 government funding deadline all but assures a volley with the Senate, which is expected to reject the House GOP measure.

Why the House Is Voting on Defense Funding a Third Time
Messaging and internal politics lead to another vote on increasing military spending

Speaker Paul D. Ryan and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, left, reached an agreement with defense hawks such as House Armed Services Chairman Mac Thornberry to hold another vote on fiscal 2018 defense funding. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House vote this week on a stand-alone defense appropriations measure to boost funding for the military serves two primary purposes for Republicans: messaging and peacekeeping.

While the chamber has already twice passed legislation to fund the Pentagon above the fiscal 2018 sequestration budget cap, Tuesday’s vote allows the GOP to continue emphasizing its support for national security.

Senate Tax Positions Prevail in Conference, House GOP Doesn’t Care
Concerns muted amid political imperative to achieve a legislative victory

Senate Finance Chairman Orrin G. Hatch, R-Utah, left, and House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas, led negotiations on the GOP tax overhaul conference committee. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The tax overhaul conference report looks a lot like the Senate bill. Senate negotiators prevailed on most of the major issues — and House Republicans say they’re fine with that.

House Republicans interviewed for this story said they will support the final product despite it being very different from the one they voted on in November, with reasons ranging from specific provisions they championed to the overall benefits of the sweeping package.

Ready or Not, House Republicans Set Vote on Tax Overhaul
But floor delay remains a possibility as GOP leaders wrangle votes

Speaker Paul D. Ryan said the health care debate taught him not to set an “artificial deadline” for passing legislation. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The scenario is all too familiar: House Republican leaders schedule a floor vote on a major legislative priority and exude confidence the bill will pass despite a chorus of rank-and-file concern. 

GOP leaders insist the tax overhaul they plan to vote on this week is different from the health care bill they had to pull from the floor this spring. But the reality is they are still wrangling the 218 votes needed to pass their tax measure. A possible repeat scenario of the health care debacle looms.

House Republicans Raise Red Flags Over Senate Tax Bill
Differences on estate tax, state and local tax deduction could cause issues

Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa., has concerns about the Senate not repealing the estate tax and worries the House have to vote on the Senate version of the tax overhaul bill. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The tax overhaul bill the Senate released Thursday could create problems in negotiations with the House, given its divergence on key areas like the estate tax and the state and local tax deduction.

House conservatives are already firing warning shots that some aspects of the Senate bill are unacceptable, like a one-year delay in the corporate tax rate cut and preservation of the estate tax.

House GOP Tax Bill Keeps 39.6% Rate for High Earners, Cuts Corporate Rate to 20%
Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady gathering feedback for changes to be made before Monday markup

House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady, seen here during the September rollout of the GOP’s tax overhaul framework. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Republicans’ long-awaited tax overhaul bill will keep the top individual rate at 39.6 percent for high-income earners and will immediately and permanently cut the corporate rate to 20 percent. 

The legislation seeks to revamp the tax code in a major way for the first time since 1986, incorporating long-sought goals of congressional Republicans to keep more money in the pockets of individuals and families and boost incentives for businesses by closing loopholes.