June 30, 2015 SIGN IN | REGISTER
See photos from the 54th Annual Roll Call Congressional Baseball Game — slideshow sponsored by Grant Thornton LLP.

Executive Branch Archive

Iran Bill One Vote Away From Veto-Proof Majority

A key Iran bill moved this week to being just one vote away from having the necessary Senate support to overcome a promised presidential veto. However, the Thursday release of a framework for a political agreement with Tehran has added enough new variables to the congressional debate that it could enable the White House to peel away some Democratic supporters of the legislation.

Crystal and Shamrock Ritual Obscures Irish Economic Woes

It's one of Washington's most time-worn rituals: the St. Patrick's Day journey of Ireland's Prime Minster, or Taoiseach, to the White House with a group of Irish dignitaries to present the sitting president with a crystal bowl of Shamrocks. Ireland's Enda Kenny posed for the cameras today with President Barack Obama and the story behind the photo op said more about Ireland's current economic state than the tradition itself, which dates back to John F. Kennedy’s day.

Taxpayer Dollars and Disclosure in Politics | Commentary

In this year’s State of the Union address, President Barack Obama couldn’t have been more transparent. He said, “[A] better politics is one where we spend less time drowning in dark money for ads that pull us into the gutter, and spend more time lifting young people up, with a sense of purpose and possibility, and asking them to join in the great mission of building America.”

Obama's AUMF Is After the Fact, Beside the Point

President Barack Obama sent Congress today a legislative proposal that purports to approve war against the Islamic State while limiting the U.S. role in the conflict. It does neither.

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Hurdles Exist for the Prospects of Any 'Grand Bargain' on Sequester, Defense Spending

President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats would like to get rid of the sequester. Many Republicans want more money for defense. That would seem to offer a potential formula for a budget agreement.

Patent Trolls Come in All Shapes and Sizes | Commentary

Mythological trolls — described as old and ugly creatures living under bridges or in caves — are known for one central feature: generally troublesome and injurious to human enterprise. Much of the same can be said for today’s patent troll — the dubious business entity again drawing the ire of Congress that exists solely to acquire patents and make claims of infringement in court.

Congress -- Yes, Congress -- Can Take The Politics Out of Net Neutrality | Commentary

I have argued that President Barack Obama has won the net neutrality debate, but the most important question facing him and the Congress is how he wins.

Lifting Up American Families With Smarter, Less Burdensome Regulations | Commentary

America’s small businesses are the way millions of families get ahead in life. Small businesses employ about half of all working Americans, and create 2 of every 3 new job opportunities.

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Heritage to Offer Conservative Budget Blueprint

More than 100 cost-savings proposals, due out from the Heritage Foundation on Thursday, could provide ammunition for conservative lawmakers in coming debates over restructuring entitlement programs, addressing the post-sequester discretionary spending caps, reauthorizing the Highway Trust Fund and raising the debt limit.

Democrats Rebuff DHS Bill Over Immigration Provisions

Democrats banded together Tuesday to block the Senate from considering a Homeland Security spending bill, leaving GOP leaders scrambling to find another path forward to challenge the president over immigration.

Is the IRS Ready for Some Football? | Commentary

The IRS has a tough job ahead. The agency is in the process of writing a rule that could clarify the definition of political activity for nonprofits, making it harder to game the system and push millions of undisclosed dollars into our elections while also making it easier for nonprofits to navigate and easier for the IRS to enforce the rules.

Legislative Branch: Eyeing 10 Percent Boost

Lawmakers and congressional agencies are eyeing small jumps in fiscal 2016 legislative branch funding, even though President Barack Obama’s proposed budget includes billions in spending increases and a rollback of sequester cuts.

Border Surveillance Follies | Commentary

For more than a decade, the Department of Homeland Security has employed some of the same kinds of drones used by our military. The ostensible purpose of having unarmed Predator drones was to give U.S. Customs and Border Protection additional aerial surveillance capabilities along the Southern border. Homeland Security officials argued the drones were cost-effective and needed. As a cost-savings measure, the Obama administration proposed major cuts to the DHS drone program in 2010, but House Appropriations Committee leaders, who supported the program and felt the expansion should continue, shot that proposal down. They should’ve thought through that decision far more carefully.

Boehner Plans to Authorize House Suit Against Obama Over Immigration

House Republican leaders are finalizing a plan that would authorize the chamber to take legal actions against President Barack Obama over his executive actions on immigration.

Paris Attacks Show the War on Terror Isn't Working | Commentary

The recent attacks that took place in Paris were tragedies that deserve a thoughtful, reasoned response. Instead, many have used this opportunity to advocate for enhanced militarization and ramped-up reactionary tactics, from House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry, R-Texas, to Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. Certainly it is tempting to react with fear when such horrific events happen. But the real lesson to be learned from the Paris attacks is that endless, global war is not the solution to violent extremism. Here’s why.

White House's New Bonds Seek to Attract Private Investment

The White House’s effort to promote public-private partnerships for infrastructure is the latest effort to tap the private sector for funds in an era of tight fiscal constraints. The outcome, if successful, could raise billions of dollars for investment in transportation projects with relatively little fiscal effect on the government.

Our Fight's With the President, Not DREAMers | Commentary

In November, President Barack Obama unveiled one of the most sweeping Executive Orders in American history. Ignoring for a moment the merits of the immigration policy itself, such actions cannot be condoned by the American body politic. Unilateral action defies the separation of powers on which our country was founded, and on which our federalist democracy is sustained. Imagine a future president refusing to enforce drug laws, environmental laws, criminal penalties for sexual assault or tax collection for important constituencies.

Better Options Exist for Postal Reform in 2015 | Commentary

Once again, Congress adjourned last year without passing much needed reform for the United States Postal Service. Reform is critically needed since the agency continues to flirt with financial insolvency caused by a crippling obligation to prefund decades of retiree health care costs.

Would You Like a Patent Lawsuit With Your Meal? | Commentary

As members of Congress prepare to re-open the debate on patent reform, they would do well to consider they have probably recently eaten food. They might have looked up recipes or pictures of that food online. They may even have counted the calories in that food, or used a website to help figure out how healthy their meal was.

Boehner and Obama Have Something in Common: Both Contributed to the Failure of Transparency Reform | Commentary

The 113th Congress is winding to a close and however few things Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio, and President Barack Obama agree on, both dropped the ball on making the government more accountable and transparent.

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