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Executive Branch Archive

Not All Climate Pollutants Are Created Equal | Commentary

Not all climate pollutants are created equal. While carbon dioxide shoulders a lot of the blame, it’s not the only bad actor when it comes to the climate. Short-lived climate pollutants, or the soot, methane and refrigerants that we call “super pollutants,” can warm the climate at a rate thousands of times greater than carbon dioxide. To tackle this important and far-reaching problem, we’ve introduced bipartisan legislation called the Super Pollutants Act of 2014.

Turning Up the Volume on Music Issues | Commentary

When you think of the great music cities of America, what comes to mind? Los Angeles? Nashville? New York City? Brookside, Rhode Island?

Clinton Library Papers Show Kagan Dropping an F-Bomb

Papers from the Clinton White House released Friday detail much of the behind-the-scenes legal work of the White House as President Bill Clinton dealt with multiple scandals and controversies in his second term.

Congress: Stop Militarizing Law Enforcement | Commentary

In the past month, Reps. Hank Johnson, D-Ga., and Raúl R. Labrador, R-Idaho, introduced the Stop Militarizing Law Enforcement Act in the House, accompanied by Sen. Tom Coburn’s, R-Okla., version in the Senate. This swift, bipartisan action is just in time, because the American police officer appears to have transformed into a soldier.

The Replacements: Talent for the End of the Second Term | Commentary

As the Obama administration enters its lame duck phase, a number of high-level executive branch officials inevitably will leave for the private sector, to return to academia, or for well-earned retirement. The resignation of Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. is the most recent example of such departures and a harbinger of the struggles over Senate confirmation to come. Even before a replacement for Holder is officially announced or even trial-ballooned, fights will begin over the steps for considering the nomination, and whether confirmation should wait until after the new Senate convenes.

VA Settles With Three Phoenix Whistle-Blowers

The Department of Veterans Affairs has reached settlements with three individuals who worked at the agency's medical center in Phoenix and complained that they were subjected to retaliation for blowing the whistle on wrongdoing.

Growing Children, Shrinking Wages: How to Make Child Care Affordable for the Middle Class | Commentary

While 14 million American families have a child younger than school age, child care and preschool are quickly becoming a luxury only the rich can afford. Child care costs exceed nearly every other household expense, and for families with two or more children, child care costs exceed the median rent cost in every state. On average, families pay anywhere from $4,000 to $16,000 per year for a child care center, depending on the geographic location and the age of the child.

In Diagnostic Innovation, Something Incredible Is Waiting to Be Known | Commentary

Astronomer, scientist and writer Carl Sagan is thought to have said, “Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known.” I know what that statement means because I live and breathe the reality of discovery every day, as do my colleagues practicing at nonprofit clinical laboratories in academic medical centers across the nation. We are engaged in scientific innovation that has improved the lives of countless patients. Congress has shown admirable leadership in this area by launching the 21st Century Cures Initiative with the objective of ensuring regulation does not stand in the way of scientific achievements that are changing how we practice medicine.

Conservatives Should Support "Local Choice" Reform

Here’s an interesting political trivia question: “What was the only veto of President George H.W. Bush to be overridden by Congress?” The answer is the 1992 Cable Act.

GOP Threatens Immigration Order Payback Via CR

House Republican leaders are aiming to move a “clean” stopgap spending bill next week with as little drama as possible.

Bring Me More Fiscal Transparency | Commentary

Recently, Representative James B. Renacci, R-Ohio, introduced the Federal Financial Statement Transparency Act of 2014. This bill can help increase accountability and transparency in federal government financial reporting. The bill can also help bolster the independence of the Federal Accounting Standards Advisory Board, which determines accounting standards for the federal government.

House Vote to Preserve A-10 Warthogs Leaves Air Force Holding Multimillion-Dollar Tab

A bipartisan group of 300 House members last week defied the wishes of both the Obama administration and Appropriations Committee leaders by voting to keep the Air Force’s venerable fleet of A-10 Warthog close-air support planes.

Pediatric Research Bill Offers Guidance, No Clear Funding Guarantees

A pediatric research bill Congress cleared this week is winning praise for boosting efforts to combat childhood diseases, but the measure will not change any spending levels unless appropriators allocate money for the work to the National Institutes of Health.

Reform National Disaster Policy Before the Next Sandy Strikes | Commentary

As we mark the start of Atlantic hurricane season, it is more critical than ever that Congress start developing a national strategy to mitigate the impact of storms.

New Exchange Rule Biggest Pre-2016 Health Care Move

A sweeping new administration rule outlining how the health law’s insurance marketplaces will operate next year sweetens financial protections for insurers and clarifies the role of counselors known as “navigators” who help people enroll in medical plans.

Bringing Mobile Broadband to Rural Americans | Commentary

In 2012, Congress passed the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012. One of its key goals was to ensure that American consumers get access to the spectrum they need. As the Federal Communications Commission finalizes its design for the Incentive Auction that will buy back 600 megahertz spectrum from broadcasters in order to sell it to providers of mobile broadband, members of Congress continue to express intense interest in the auction. Recent letters from both sides of the aisle encourage the FCC to conduct an auction equally open to all participants.

Regulations Squash Job Growth, Hurt Workers | Commentary

As a small-business owner who has worked in the service industry for more than 40 years, I have seen my share of economic challenges and government policies. The current political and economic environment is, however, by far the most difficult as a result of the policies coming out of Washington.

Address Patent Flaws or Face the Economic Consequences | Commentary

The U.S. became the world’s largest economy, in part, because its policies supported innovation and entrepreneurship. From Thomas Edison to Steve Jobs, U.S. entrepreneurs invented many of the innovations that drove the 20th century global economy, with patents playing an indispensable role in this innovation process — which may explain the prolonged push for congressional patent reform.

Pentagon Must Follow Lengthy Process to Shutter Bases, Cut Excess Military Infrastructure

The process for shedding excess military infrastructure is unlike any other in government.

Chemical Bill Has Potential for Bipartisan Success | Commentary

Politics on Capitol Hill can often be as fickle as a Washington, D.C., weather forecast. However, once every blood-red moon, we see members of Congress work carefully and deliberately to introduce true bipartisan legislation — which is precisely what U.S. Representative John Shimkus, R-Ill., is doing with the draft Chemicals in Commerce Act, proposed legislation to reform the decades-old Toxic Substances Control Act.

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