| Dec. 15, 2014, 3:58 p.m.
Wisconsin is a particularly significant test case for considering alternatives to the excise tax on fuel, especially considering the proposal that emerged in the days after Gov. Scott Walker won re-election.
| Dec. 12, 2014, 5:14 p.m.
As this lame-duck Congress limps to the end of its tenure, pundits are shouting about its ineffectiveness. The 113th Congress passed fewer laws than any Congress in 60 years. With control of the government still divided along party lines, many see little hope the next Congress will be any better.
| Dec. 10, 2014, 7:33 p.m.
There is no doubt about it: Statistically speaking, a college degree will offer the average worker a significant wage premium over workers with only a high school diploma. But does that mean that workers with no education beyond high school do not have a chance at well-paying, fulfilling careers? Far from it.
| Dec. 10, 2014, 6:09 p.m.
As the 113th session of Congress winds to a close, activity on Capitol Hill is bustling, with members of Congress working to address the most critical issues facing the country. To that end, members of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health held a critical hearing this week on a subject important to all Americans: food safety and labeling.
| Dec. 10, 2014, 4:42 p.m.
Two accidents in the commercial space industry this year — an unmanned rocket that exploded shortly after launch in the fall and an experimental suborbital craft that broke apart during flight shortly after — are almost sure to come up the next time a congressional committee discusses the private spacecraft market. But, experts say the incidents won’t have much of an effect on the sector’s increasing expansion.
| Dec. 9, 2014, 7:30 p.m.
The Ebola virus, which has now touched our shores and taken the lives of two victims in the U.S., is a threat lethal enough to demand full mobilization of our health care resources, which is what federal officials have urged. Consequently, hospitals in recent weeks have been arming themselves with the necessary knowledge, supplies and resources to confront the danger and ensure it is contained and managed skillfully.
| Dec. 9, 2014, 7:11 p.m.
If certain members of Congress and President Barack Obama have their way, 2014 may very well be remembered as the year we started taxing the Internet. The good news is that the passage of Internet sales tax legislation appears unlikely — at least for the moment. The bad news is there are still two far reaching and potentially expensive measures under consideration that pose a serious threat to the Internet as Americans now know it.
| Dec. 9, 2014, 3:42 p.m.
For 30 years, the Congressional Management Foundation has published a handbook on how to run a congressional office. “Setting Course: A Congressional Management Guide” was first published in 1984, and provided advice to the 99th Congress on everything from budgeting, to staffing the office, to buying computers. The guidance is not the same as the formal instructions provided by the committees and institutional offices which assist in the management of Congress. Instead, “Setting Course” addresses the mechanics of being a member of Congress or senior staffer and leader of what amounts to a small business.
| Dec. 9, 2014, 3:31 p.m.
A staple of the illusionist’s trade is “misdirection” — distracting the audience with the movements of one hand while using the other hand to make an object “magically” disappear.
| Dec. 8, 2014, 8:05 p.m.
Texas Democrat Gene Green appears poised to take the top Democratic slot on the House Energy and Commerce panel that handles health legislation next year after current ranking member Frank Pallone Jr. takes the top Democrat spot on the full committee.
| Dec. 8, 2014, 7:55 p.m.
The Chinese government recently announced it will establish its first independent court in Beijing for adjudicating intellectual property (IP) rights disputes. Officials plan to create two more in other key commercial hotspots within the next couple years.
| Dec. 5, 2014, 6:11 p.m.
It has been one year since the House of Representatives passed legislation to protect businesses from the scourge of the digital age: patent trolls. Yet in that year, as the Senate allowed patent reform legislation to languish in committee, trolls have continued to extort legitimate businesses, collectively draining $80 billion from the U.S. economy.
| Dec. 4, 2014, 3:05 p.m.
Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said the House will vote next week on a plan to extend the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act ahead of a year-end deadline, as congressional sources reported significant progress Thursday toward a compromise agreement.
| Dec. 3, 2014, 7:11 p.m.
The holiday season has arrived and Americans are decorating trees, taking toys for their children out of layaway and planning holiday parties. Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will be celebrating the holidays for the first time with her brand new grandbaby. ’Tis the season for family, reflection and worship. Republican operatives, though, are busy attacking Hillary Clinton. They are stuffing their stockings with hopes that Clinton will decide not to run for president.
| Dec. 3, 2014, 3:03 p.m.
In the aftermath of the upheaval on Capitol Hill caused by the recent elections, the president and congressional Republicans laid out their various priorities for the coming two years: immigration reform, alterations to Obamacare, lifting environmental regulations, a Pacific trade deal and revisions to the tax code. No doubt this list is likely to expand in the coming weeks, as more D.C. insiders try putting their favorite issues on the political radar.
| Dec. 3, 2014, 2:43 p.m.
The new Republican-controlled Congress is expected to take a pro-business approach to labor issues, including trying to rein in what GOP leaders consider an activist National Labor Relations Board and perhaps blocking some of its decisions.
| Dec. 3, 2014, 1:42 p.m.
For the past eight years, I have been working to pass the Achieving a Better Life Experience Act (HR 647, S 133), legislation that will lead to a brighter future for millions of Americans living with disabilities. Commonly referred to as the ABLE Act, the bill opens this door by amending the tax code to create tax-free savings accounts for individuals with disabilities. And, in so doing, it provides them with the same type of financial planning tool available to other Americans.
| Dec. 2, 2014, 7:13 p.m.
A year ago today, the House Energy & Commerce Committee leaders Fred Upton, R-Mich., and Greg Walden, R-Ore., launched the #CommActUpdate, an ambitious effort to overhaul the federal laws that govern America’s communications. Three hundred and sixty-five days later, on the heels of a Republican takeover of Congress and a public endorsement of the effort by soon-to-been Chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, John Thune, R-S.D., this necessary effort seems destined for significant progress in 2015. Given the outdated 1934 laws are in today’s digital economy, this should be welcome news for all stakeholders in the communications landscape, including Internet companies, consumers and legislators looking to promote modern, constructive public policy. And with a long history of bipartisan success in this area, unlike other contentious policy areas in Congress, the #CommActUpdate is not only feasible, but realistic.
| Dec. 2, 2014, 1:59 p.m.
Congress has much to do and not much time to do it before year’s end. Fortunately, leaders on both sides of the aisle have made it clear that renewal of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act, or TRIA, is a “must-do” before Congress adjourns. The program, first enacted in 2002 in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, has been extended twice because lawmakers understand it is a vital component of our national defense and economic security, and is fundamental to thwarting the economic goals of terrorism.
| Dec. 1, 2014, 5:43 p.m.
Privatization backers of a corporation model such as the one used in Canada would help advance the technological upgrades required under the beleaguered NextGen air traffic control modernization program.