Dems, GOP still far apart on spending, taxes

On Thursday, Dec. 12, the House passed a bipartisan budget deal worked out by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan and his Senate counterpart, Senator Patty Murray. The deal passed overwhelmingly, with huge support from both sides. 

I voted against it. It wasn’t an easy decision.

Congress scrambles to produce budget document

This week was the second to last week of the legislative year. And since Congress doesn’t do anything until the very last minute, that means it was a very quiet week.

On Tuesday, however, a mad scramble to finish up the nation’s business is likely to begin. The Farm Bill remains outstanding, as does the National Defense Authorization and some other fairly large ticket items.

ObamaCare: This is just the beginning

As you probably know by now, the House has passed a bipartisan bill to try to fix the “if you like your healthcare, you can keep it” problem.

It’s not a perfect solution.

This bill will only buy another year for people who like their current coverage, but it’s better than the current situation. As you’ve probably heard, in the state of California alone, more than a million people have been notified that their health insurance is being cancelled.

A time to honor, remember veterans

First off, I want to wish all of the veterans out there a very happy Veterans Day.

As many of you know, our district is home to more than 100,000 veterans and that makes today a very special day in our area. If you see a veteran today, please let them know we’re thinking about them and we appreciate everything they have done for this country.

Debt ceiling, budget and more in Washington

With everything going on this week, I want to take a moment to give you the background you need on two things:  First, I want to try to explain exactly what the debt ceiling is, what the deadline of Oct. 17 means, and what the practical implications are – for better or worse.

Second, I want to give you the best insight I can as to where things stand in the negotiations.

The scoop on the debt ceiling

First, the debt ceiling.  Here’s what you need to know…


Government shutdown drones on; Head Start funds endangered

Special Edition

Well, as you’ve undoubtedly noticed, this shutdown situation continues.  Here is a quick update on what’s happened over the last few days and where things stand now.

In short, both sides have dug in and aren’t showing any signs of moving.  The President’s line is, “I will not negotiate”.  Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s line is “pass our bill because we won’t consider anything else”.  The House is refusing to do that and is insisting on having negotiations.


Update: Government funding diet lingers as partisanship rolls

Obviously, I usually only send this out once a week, but my office is getting flooded with calls from people wanting to know what’s going on and when all of this is going to end, so I wanted to give you a quick rundown of the latest developments:

On Saturday night, the House sent the Senate a third proposal (the first two defunded or delayed implementation of the Affordable Care Act). The third proposal included funding for the government and attached the repeal of the Medical Device Tax.


Americans fed up with government that has trouble handling money

By now, you all know about the showdown in Congress over temporary funding for the government.

The stubbornness on both sides and the inability to reach a consensus is well known and it’s been covered plenty by the media.  I don’t want to waste your time rehashing all of that.  And truth be told, what frustrates me goes far beyond this specific impasse.


Veterans legislation makes rounds in Congress

First, I wanted to bring you up to speed on some veterans-related legislation that was considered in the House this week.

It's still about the federal budget


Just a quick note this week:  In the last issue, I reported on the House budget proposal.  This week, we’ve got the details from the Senate.  To keep it simple, let’s just say it’s a pretty starkly different vision for where we can go over the next ten years.

Here are the highlights:

While the House proposal would balance the budget within ten years, the Senate version does not propose we reach a balanced budget… ever.


Budget season: When do we all come together?


Well folks, we’re smack dab in the middle of the annual budget season in Washington… or at least we’re supposed to be.

We got word on Friday that the President’s budget request will be arriving in Congress approximately two months late.  The Senate budget proposal, assuming it arrives, will be approximately four years late.  The House budget proposal, whether everyone agrees with it or not, will be published about a full month before it is due.  I’ll leave the interpretation of those facts to you.


Brown-Waite asks AARP to reveal true reasons behind health care bill endorsement

WASHINGTON D.C. - U.S. Congresswoman Ginny Brown-Waite (FL-05) was disappointed to learn of AARP's decision to endorse the Democrats' $1.3 trillion health care bill:

"There was a time when AARP represented the interests of retired people-- this endorsement proves that those days are long gone. The Democrats' health care bill cuts $400 billion dollars from Medicare - the very program that AARP's members paid for and rely on.


Brown-Waite applauds passage of Small Business Finance & Investment Act

Washington D.C. - U.S. Congresswoman Ginny Brown-Waite (FL-05) released the following statement today after the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 3854; Small Business Financing and Investment Act of 2009:

"For more than nine months, I have been calling on this Congress to provide real support to small businesses.

U.S. House honors National Adoption Day, Month

WASHINGTON D.C. - U.S. Congresswoman Ginny Brown-Waite (FL-05) released the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives passed her resolution, H. Res. 831; Supporting the Goals and Ideals of National Adoption Day and National Adoption Month:

"As the mother of an adopted daughter, I know first-hand the immense joy that an adopted child can bring to a family.


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