Lame Duck Congress Has Lots of Work to Do Even Without Fiscal Slope

By: Friday November 9, 2012 7:45 am

Among the many other reasons not to engage in a grand bargain during the lame duck session is that Congress actually needs to get busy with other matters. For a variety of reasons, mainly that they’re not good at their job, Congress left a multitude of items on the table for the lame duck, many [...]

Emergency Management Makes the Case for Government

By: Tuesday October 30, 2012 9:15 am

Whatever the failings of political leadership on both sides of the aisle, there’s still a residual belief in the validity of government on the Democratic side that simply does not exist on the Republican side. In times like this, where the effects of FIRE sector lobbying doesn’t come into play, you see that difference in the proper role of government shine through. In order for this to become definitive, however, all government programs have to show the same diligence and dedication. One program like HAMP can wipe out years of proper actions in organizations like FEMA.

Congressional Constraints Could Harm Sandy Response

By: Tuesday October 30, 2012 6:18 am

By now you’ve probably heard about or seen the consequences of Frankenstorm Sandy, especially along the Jersey Shore and in the five boroughs of the New York City metropolitan area. The evacuation of NYU Hospital. The flooding of the New York City subway system. The shutdown of the New York Stock Exchange on consecutive days [...]

Romney Endorsed in Primary Debate Either Eliminating or Privatizing FEMA

By: Monday October 29, 2012 7:45 am

Emergency management is a critical federal program, if for no other reason than because of budget constraints. If states were expected to assume the full costs of emergency management, because they are bound by balanced budget rules, the money would have to come out of education or health care or some other public service. But [...]

OMB Plans to Stretch FEMA Funding to the Next Showdown

By: Wednesday September 28, 2011 11:01 am

Congress narrowly avoided the potential crisis of a government shutdown, because FEMA found enough funding to last through Fiscal Year 2011, which ends this week. This eliminated the need for emergency 2011 funding, which was attached to a continuing resolution to fund the government. So they dropped that funding along with the offset that was [...]

Democrats Preserve Principles, Republicans Cave on Continuing Resolution and FEMA Funding

By: Tuesday September 27, 2011 6:20 am

As I reported during last night’s live blog, the Senate reached agreement on a Continuing Resolution to fund the federal government, including reduced emergency funds — but without offsets — through November 18.  The agreement averts for now the threat of a government shutdown.  The Senate approved the CR by a vote of 79-12, and [...]

Live Thread: Senate Vote on Continuing Resolution with Disaster Funding

By: Monday September 26, 2011 2:18 pm

Voting in the Senate on a temporary spending bill that includes disaster relief funding is about to get underway. Harry Reid submitted the bill, which is virtually identical to the bill that passed the Senate, except that the disaster relief funding is not offset, for a cloture vote, which requires 60 votes. That means that [...]

Democrats Fighting Funding Resolution To Stop a Dangerous Precedent

By: Monday September 26, 2011 7:35 am

Despite threats to carry on with a one-week recess, Congress stayed in session, with still no agreement on funding the government past this Friday.  That means the threat of a government shutdown is still there. The Senate will vote this afternoon on a continuing resolution to fund the government that includes $3.65 billion in disaster [...]

Boehner Stuck, Without Control of His Caucus on Continuing Resolution to Fund the Government

By: Thursday September 22, 2011 11:12 am

Yesterday’s setback for Speaker John Boehner on a continuing resolution to fund the government shows what little real control Boehner has over his caucus. With 242 members, Boehner has the ability to pass any legislation he wants without Democratic crossover votes – and in this case he got 6 Democratic crossovers. He has a good [...]

Reid Ups Ante, Says He Won’t Back Down on Disaster Relief Funding

By: Tuesday September 20, 2011 3:04 pm

The threat of a government shutdown, hardly part of any policy debates currently, became all the more real today, as Harry Reid vowed that he would not back down and would seek to replace the disaster relief section of the House continuing resolution, if it gets to the Senate, with an offset-free bill passed in [...]

The Government Shutdown Possibility Nobody’s Talking About

By: Tuesday September 20, 2011 10:59 am

Harry Reid made some news in his opening remarks, showing that there’s a ton of brinksmanship yet to be played that could move the country in a very real way toward a government shutdown in two weeks. The bird’s-eye view is this: Congress will not be able to get its Fiscal Year 2012 appropriations done [...]

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