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- Congressional Hits and Misses: Week of April 13, 2015
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- Democrat Announces Senate Bid in Pennsylvania
- Context for Facebook Chatter About Presidential Candidates
Harmony. Unity. Parity.
Why did General Motors wait a full decade to recall more than 1.6 million vehicles that have been connected to 31 deaths and dozens of injuries?
A United Nations report this week warned that a warming planet will exacerbate existing health problems in the coming decades — and U.S. scientists will caution later this month that those and other public health concerns are imminent.
Terrance W. Gainer spent most of March 4 with the Dalai Lama, guiding the spiritual leader around the Capitol in his capacity as the Senate sergeant-at-arms.
The Antiquities Act was established in 1906 as a way for the president to single-handedly create new national monuments. The law provides the president with the express authority to proclaim “historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest” as national monuments, “the limits of which in all cases shall be confined to the smallest area compatible with the proper care and management of the objects to be protected.”
In the wake of the Washington Navy Yard shooting, the Capitol’s top law enforcement officials went in different directions on security — resulting in an uneven response to a potential campus threat that Capitol Police Chief Kim C. Dine hopes is never repeated.
Critics of the Obama administration’s bailout of the domestic auto industry are questioning whether regulators may have ignored safety defects in General Motors Co. vehicles while the carmaker was under taxpayer ownership.
The recall of about 1.7 million General Motors Co. vehicles for ignition switch defects linked to 13 deaths has renewed congressional scrutiny of the federal agency charged with regulating highway safety.
For the second time in as many Congresses, the House of Representatives passed the Regulatory Accountability Act, the first-ever major overhaul of the Administrative Procedure Act. The Senate, however, has yet to give the bill so much as a hearing.
The long-standing dispute between Congress and the White House over the botched Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives gun-running program called “Fast and Furious” has entered a new stage. Currently the matter is before the D.C. District Court where the House of Representatives and Department of Justice are at loggerheads over President Barack Obama’s executive privilege claim to conceal various documents from Congress.
In 1792, when charged with enforcing an unpopular tax on whiskey in the face of rebellion, President George Washington noted in a letter to Alexander Hamilton, “It is my duty to see the Laws executed: to permit them to be trampled upon with impunity would be repugnant to” that duty.
The instant-reaction kabuki of party leaders to the president’s budget announcement has a certain predictable nature, and this year was no different.
President Barack Obama’s budget for fiscal 2015 is perhaps his most realistic to date. Grand bargains are out. Grand new proposals are out, too.
Three years ago, a dozen leading consumer electronics companies collaborated to create the “Billion Pound Challenge.” The goal: recycle one billion pounds of electronic devices annually, enough to fill an entire NFL stadium. As of last April, the industry was more than halfway to its original goal, with 585 million pounds responsibly recycled — up from 300 million pounds in 2010. But now a patchwork of state rules mandating recycling is inadvertently complicating this effort to reach our billion-pound stretch goal.
While the United States economy continues to falter, some in Congress are standing in the way of a key trade vote that has the potential to benefit our stagnant economy.
In announcing recent actions by the White House to combat patent trolls and strengthen America’s patent system, Gene Sperling, director of the National Economic Council and assistant to the president for economic policy, succinctly observed, “It’s no small deal that the president of the United States chose to make a call for patent reform legislation in his State of the Union address.”
Since the gasoline shortages of the 1970s, Congress has, with only a few exceptions, barred all U.S. crude oil exports. But an energy policy that may have made sense 40 years ago no longer does. Innovative drilling techniques have spawned an oil and natural gas boom in the United States. Since oil surpluses can create as many problems as oil shortages, it’s time to eliminate those export restrictions.
Solar energy represented less than 1 percent of the domestic electricity generation mix in 2012 but has experienced dramatic growth in the interim with help from both the federal government and the private sector.
Apparently some members of Congress think about more than re-election.
Congress should tread extremely carefully before it even thinks about banning lawful activity on the Internet.