By; Scott McKay
From a press release Scalise’s office put out on the omnibus this afternoon…
Q: What’s In The Omnibus?
A: Big Wins For National Security, Energy, And Protecting Americans From ObamaCare
The House is set to vote on a federal funding bill tomorrow that advances several bold, conservative priorities. The full text of the bill can be read here. Below are three highlights in the bill that advance meaningful solutions through bipartisan cooperation:
- Bolsters national security. Several provisions within the bill will help keep Americans safe and enhance our national security. At a time when threats are expanding and intensifying around the globe, we need to ensure our military and intelligence communities have the funds necessary to ensure our security at home.
- Fully funds defense, pays our troops, and provides the resources and equipment our military needs to strengthen and protect our national security
- Funds critical programs to support the Iron Dome, Ukraine’s efforts to protect themselves from Russian aggression, and counterterrorism programs for regional allies like Jordan
- Funds efforts to combat ISIL, support operations in Afghanistan, and increase intelligence and surveillance capabilities
- Prohibits closure of our terrorist detention facility at Guantanamo Bay and prevents transfer of detainees into the U.S.
- Increases funds for veterans by 9.8% above FY15 to support health care, job training, and reducing the claims backlog at the VA
- Lifts the 40-year-old ban on crude oil exports. America is the only country in the world with a self-imposed ban on exporting our own crude oil, and it’s time we got rid of this obsolete, job-killing barrier once and for all. In fact, we’ve lost 80,000U.S. jobs because oil producers have been forced to scale back their rigs by nearly 60 percent. When we lift the ban, U.S. producers would generate more than 1 millionbarrels daily, which means more American jobs and greater economic competitiveness in the global marketplace. As House Majority Whip, Scalise has used his seat at the Leadership table to build the legislative coalition that created such strong support from both Republicans and Democrats.
- Creates more than 5,000 jobs in Louisiana and nearly 1 million jobs across the country
- Adds nearly $300 million to our state’s economy and $170 billion annually to our national GDP
- Shifts energy dependence of emerging democracies away from bad actors like Russia and Iran
- According to the Government Accountability Office, consumer gas prices here at home could drop as much as 13 cents per gallon so families can save more at the pump.
- Prevents a taxpayer bailout of ObamaCare’s risk corridors program. This prevents the unnecessary ObamaCare tax burdens being heaped upon hardworking Americans.
Stops the taxpayer bailout of insurance companies through the Obamacare risk corridor program
Delays for two years the poorly designed ObamaCare Cadillac tax—a 40 percent excise tax on “high cost” employer health plans
Puts a one year moratorium on the Health Insurance Tax that drives up health care premiums and acts as a tax on small businesses
Cuts funding by $15 million for the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), which will act as a de facto rationing body by cutting certain providers and effectively stopping access to care
Blocks the Public Health and Prevention Fund from being used as an ObamaCare slush fund
Requires the Inspectors General at the Department of Health and Human Services and the Treasury Department to issue a report on improper payments of ObamaCare’s tax subsidies
All of which is nice, and the oil export provision really is a good piece of policy.
But frankly, the Cadillac Plan tax should have been allowed to go through. Let the Democrats take it in the shorts for their atrocious policy.
And there is so much horrible policy in this bill that we might as well just elect Trump president now – because this 2,000-page monstrosity simply disqualifies the political class in this country.
How can Republicans agree to continue funding Planned Parenthood?
How can they agree to continue funneling corporate welfare to Elon Musk?
And how can they agree to a complete surrender on immigration?
The process which produced the bill contained zero transparency, and it’s presented with no opportunity for a real vetting of the bill before it has to be voted on. It’s essentially “Pass this sh*t because I said so” from Ryan, because Congress is under the gun and nobody wants a government shutdown.
Ryan is losing an enormous amount of legitimacy as the Speaker, though it’s fair to note he inherited this mess from John Boehner.
But Ryan has to fix this process. He has to bring the federal budget back to regular order, next year. The American people have had it with this quality of governance. As Pat Caddell noted, revolution is in the air around the country – there is no faith in Washington, DC anymore and none is deserved.
We shouldn’t have to swallow this bill to get the stupid ban on oil exports lifted. That ought to happen without being attached to must-pass legislation. Scalise isn’t at fault for getting it inserted into the omnibus bill, and it is somewhat fun that just a couple of weeks after coming home from Paris with a ridiculous climate change agreement Barack Obama will have to sign something that makes America an oil exporter, but it’s not enough.
Power – and money – has to be ripped out of Washington. It needs to come back to the states. This can’t continue.