18 Republicans Threaten To Oppose Government Funding Bill Over Planned Parenthood

According to lifenews.com, a group of 18 House Republicans say they will hold up any bill to fund the federal government that does not contain language in it to de-fund Planned Parenthood.

“We must act to fully defund Planned Parenthood,” they wrote in a letter obtained by the publication The Hill.

“Please know that we cannot and will not support any funding resolution — an appropriations bill, an omnibus package, a continuing resolution, or otherwise — that contains any funding for Planned Parenthood, including mandatory funding streams.”

Yesterday, the Republican-backed effort to end federal funding for Planned Parenthood didn’t pass. The vote was 53-46, meaning the measure failed the get the 60 votes needed to overcome a Democratic filibuster on bringing the bill up for debate.

Senate Republicans were forced to come up with 60 votes to invoke cloture and end debate on the pro-life measure.

What is cloture?

Cloture is the procedure by which the Senate can vote to place a time limit on consideration of a bill or other matter, and thereby overcome a filibuster.

Senate.gov:  “Under the cloture rule (Rule XXII), the Senate may limit consideration of a pending matter to 30 additional hours, but only by vote of three-fifths of the full Senate, normally 60 votes.”

So, 18 House Republicans will hold up a government spending bill if the bill provides funding to Planned Parenthood.

Could the plan lead to a government shutdown?

The Hill states:

“With 18 Republicans already ruling out support for a funding bill in September if it contains Planned Parenthood funding, it could create a problem for leaders as they seek to avoid a government shutdown in October.

“(Though) Democrats have also expressed concern about some of the videos, many have defended the organization and many likely would oppose a spending bill that defunds Planned Parenthood.

“Congress must fund the government by Oct. 1, and GOP leaders are pointing to a continuing resolution (CR) that would extend current funding.”

According to The Hill, the letter was signed by Reps. Mick Mulvaney (R-S.C.), Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), John Fleming (R-La.), Raúl Labrador (R-Idaho), Matt Salmon (R-Ariz.) Tim Huelskamp (R-Kan.), Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.) Thomas Massie (R-Ky.), Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), Walter Jones (R-N.C.), Curt Clawson (R-Fla.), Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.), Keith Rothfus (R-Pa.), Randy Weber (R-Texas), Scott Perry (R-N.J.), Steven Pearce (R-N.M.), Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) and Louie Gohmert (R-Texas).

http://thehill.com/policy/finance/249694-18-house-republicans-pledge-to-oppose-spending-bill-with-planned-parenthood

http://www.lifenews.com/2015/07/31/18-house-republicans-pledge-to-shut-down-government-if-planned-parenthood-not-de-funded/

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Jeb Bush Supports Science Funding For Alzheimer’s

Secular Talk

According to The New York Times, former Governor Jeb Bush talked about his mother-in-law’s affliction with Alzheimer’s disease last week.  He also shed some light on what he thinks should be done to fight the illness.

“In an email exchange with Maria Shriver, the journalist, activist and author, Mr. Bush wrote that he has been getting a lot of feedback since revealing that his family has firsthand experience with the disease,” writes The Times.

Mr. Bush called for more research funding and a faster drug approval process to fight Alzheimer’s, which the CDC says afflicts some 5 million Americans, according to The NYT.  “We need to increase funding to find a cure,” Mr. Bush said.

(Updated article)

http://crooksandliars.com/2015/05/republican-compassion-hey-affects-me

http://www.nytimes.com/politics/first-draft/2015/05/26/jeb-bush-signals-more-funding-and-faster-drug-approval-for-alzheimers/

Stephen Colbert To Give $800,000 To South Carolina Schools

According to The Associated Press, Stephen Colbert surprised teachers in his native South Carolina recently by announcing that he would fund every single classroom project listed by teachers from the state on the crowdfunding website DonorsChoose.org.

It is a gift valued in excess of $800,000.

According to avclub.com, funds for the donation will come from the sale of The Colbert Report’s desk and fireplace, which were raffled off online late last year. Matching funds will come from ScanSource and The Morgridge Family Foundation’s Share Fair Nation.

Colbert, who is a member of the DonorsChoose.org board, made the announcement on a live video feed to the students of Alexander Elementary School in Greenville, South Carolina on May 7th.

http://www.avclub.com/article/stephen-colbert-offers-fund-800000-worth-projects–219105

Bill Passed To Fund Homeland Security For One Week

Until late Friday afternoon, it looked like the House would pass a three-week continuing resolution, the Senate would approve it, and President Obama would sign it, and it would at least be better than a shutdown, according to Politico.

White House aides were paying attention to their vote, but not with a lot of suspense.

Then the House fumbled its funding bill, and suddenly White House and DHS officials were running around trying to figure out the next move.

By late Friday night, the sense of crisis passed as it became clear that the solution would be a one-week continuing resolution to keep the department’s doors open, for a while.

The House passed the one-week bill around 10 p.m., less than two hours after the Senate approved it. Obama signed the seven-day bill before midnight.

The legislation also leaves intact Obama administration executive actions on immigration, though Republicans have vowed to defund it.

The outcome means the White House and DHS will have to be prepared for another crisis in just a week, according to Politico.

http://www.politico.com/story/2015/02/white-house-dhs-house-funding-bill-failure-115607.html#ixzz3T5vn4EnY

Are Republicans Going To Build A Wall Of Obstruction On Immigration?

Sen-Elect Cory Gardner (R., Colo.), center, follows Sen.-elect Shelley Moore Capito (R., W.Va.), through reporters Wednesday on Capitol Hill.According to the Wall Street Journal, a bloc of Republican lawmakers is seeking to use must-pass spending legislation in the final weeks of the year to place limits on President Barack Obama’s ability to loosen immigration rules.

This could threaten to split the party in Congress.

AZCentral reports that President Obama’s plans to reveal a 10-part immigration reform plan via executive order as early as next week may trump a move by Republicans shut down the government in order to stop him.

However, some Republicans are pushing for Congress to make a move before Mr. Obama does. More than 50 House lawmakers have signed a letter saying that language barring the president from acting alone should be attached to legislation needed to keep the government operating after Dec. 11, when its current funding expires.

Other Republicans, including GOP leaders, are wary of forcing a budget showdown with the president over the issue, saying voters are eager for politicians to work together.

So is a new shutdown looming?

Sen. Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.), who is poised to become Senate majority leader in January, has said flatly that there will be no government shutdown like the one in 2013 that was politically harmful to his party.

The result is that barely a week after their broad election victories, party leaders will have to decide whether to override conservatives’ demands in favor of a more pragmatic approach.

At issue is whether some of the 11 million people who are in the U.S. illegally should be allowed to live and work openly, and whether Mr. Obama has the authority to allow that without legislation.

It is unclear why the President wouldn’t have the authority, as executive orders are part of the authority legally provided to every president.

Immigration advocates say there is legal precedent and a humanitarian imperative for Mr. Obama to act.

Republicans say he is in danger of exceeding his authority.

GOP leaders made clear in the days after the election that they wanted to set their own agenda when they control of both chambers next year without any lingering fights about spending for the current fiscal year.

The leaders also want to look for other ways to push back against the president’s moves on immigration, said a senior Senate GOP aide.  Over the past year, there has been open and defiant talk of impeachment by members of the Republican party.

House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R., Ky.) said it would be unrealistic to expect the president would sign a spending bill that included immigration language.

“I don’t want a shutdown,” he said. “You should not take a hostage that you can’t shoot.”

Some Republicans argue that if they cannot move a spending bill for the rest of the fiscal year with the immigration language attached, they should pass a short-term funding measure and revisit the matter early next year.

Mr. Obama’s legal rationale is likely to be that it would be impossible to deport all 11 million illegal immigrants, so those with deep ties to the U.S. should be allowed to live and work openly in the country.

President Requests $6.18 Billion To Fight Ebola

Obama1President Barack Obama on Wednesday asked Congress for $6.18 billion in emergency funds to confront Ebola at its source in West Africa and to secure the United States against any possible spread.

In a letter sent to House Speaker John Boehner on Wednesday, the president called anti-Ebola efforts an issue of national security.

Administration officials say $2 billion of the total would be apportioned to the United States Agency for International Development and $2.4 billion would go to the Department of Health and Human Services. More than $1.5 billion would be for a contingency fund to deal with any unanticipated developments like a flare-up in West Africa or a need to vaccinate U.S. health care workers.

Immediate spending would be used to strengthen the public health system in the U.S., combat the epidemic in West Africa, and speed up the development and testing of vaccines and other therapies. The money also would be used to help vulnerable foreign countries detect and respond to the disease.

The administration would establish more than 50 Ebola treatment centers throughout the country, procure safety suits, and more strictly monitor travelers on their arrival in the U.S.

The White House is asking for prompt action, meaning it wants approval during the current lame duck session, while Democrats are still in control of the Senate.

Republicans already control the House, but conservatives won’t officially takeover control of the Senate until next January. Already the parties have vocally disagreed with each other about instituting a travel ban and on how to handle aid workers who return to the U.S. after providing medical assistance in West Africa.