House of Representatives

Dems playing defense in the House of Representives

Featured image If there is anyone left who believes the Democrats have a decent shot at winning control of the House this year, he or she should check out the ad reservations made by House Majority PAC, the leading super-PAC backing Democrats in House races. The group’s name reflects optimism, but its buys don’t. Three quarters of the districts for which the PAC has reserved air time are presently held by Democrats. »

Dems get that sinking feeling in FLA-13

Featured image There will be no replay this November of that closely-watched special congressional election in Florida last month in which Republican David Jolly defeated Democrat Alex Sink. The Democrat says she will not run. This leaves the Dems searching for a respectable candidate to challenge Jolly. Meanwhile, Jolly can accrue the advantages, financial and otherwise, of incumbency. Rep. Steve ( “Not all Republican law makers are racists”) Israel, the Democratic Campaign »

Sink sank, Obamacare suspected

Featured image Republican Dave Jolly has defeated Democrat Alex Sink in the special congressional election in FLA-13. The margin was 48.5 to 46.5. This was a closely watched election in which the Democrats invested lots of money and effort (Jolly was significantly outspent) and recruited a prominent candidate — their former nominee for Governor. Although the seat has been held for years by a popular Republican, Obama carried the district in 2012, »

Down to the wire in FLA-13

Featured image A special election will take place tomorrow (Tuesday) in Florida’s 13th congressional district (the Tampa Bay peninsula area). Democrat Alex Sink is facing Republican David Jolly, with Libertarian Lucas Overby also in the race. The seat was held for years by Republican Bill Young, who died last October. Republicans hold a registration advantage in the district and, as noted, have long held the seat. But the Democrats have some key »

Report: House GOP leadership to behave rationally

Featured image Robert Costa reports in the Washington Post that the GOP House leadership has decided to close up shop on bipartisan legislation and focus exclusively on proposals that have wide Republican backing. This would mean no big-ticket items such as immigration reform this year. One must always be wary of the leadership’s disavowal of intent to pursue immigration reform. It may be an attempt to calm the waters, cause the base »

House Votes to Raise Debt Ceiling, Restore Veterans’ Cuts

Featured image House Republicans gave up today on their effort to get something in exchange for raising the debt limit. The House passed a “clean” debt limit bill, with only 28 Republicans voting in favor. Separately the House voted to repeal the cuts to veterans’ benefits that were part of the Ryan-Murray deal; that vote was 326-90. Whether the veterans’ COLA cuts will actually be restored remains to be seen. The House »

The immigration credibility gap: it isn’t just Obama’s

Featured image The House GOP leadership’s current line on immigration reform is that passage of legislation is in serious doubt due to lack of trust in President Obama’s willingness to enforce what Congress passes on the subject. Thus, Speaker Boehner says: There’s widespread doubt about whether this administration can be trusted to enforce our laws. And it’s going to be difficult to move any immigration legislation until that changes. The American people, »

McConnell: Immigration reform unlikely this year

Featured image The Hill reports that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell says he doesn’t see any way the Democratic-controlled Senate and GOP-led House will agree on immigration reform legislation in 2014. McConnell explained: I think we have sort of an irresolvable conflict here. The Senate insists on comprehensive [legislation]. The House says it won’t go to conference with the Senate on comprehensive and wants to look at [it] step by step. I »

GOP leadership vs. rising stars?

Featured image On CBS’s Face the Nation gabfest this morning, Major Garrett (substituting for Bob Schieffer) tried manfully to get House Majority Leader Eric Cantor to open up about the House leadership’s announced immigration reform principles (video below). Cantor wouldn’t sing, apart from reciting support for the Democratic line on “DREAMers.” (Insert groan here.) Why so shy? I find that peculiar. I don’t think the explanation is stupidity. I don’t think the »

What are they thinking and how can their thinking be changed?

Featured image This morning, in a post called “What Are They Thinking?,” Scott asked the question about which speculation has become rampant: Why is the House leadership preparing to push for immigration reform that the base doesn’t want at a time when the GOP seems poised to make big gains in the upcoming election? Scott posits “stupidity.” John has posited “cupidity,” stating: “the principal reason the Republican House leadership is willing to »

Make your voice heard on amnesty

Featured image It’s clear where Power Line stands on the House GOP leadership’s plan to push for amnesty for illegal immigrants, among other benefits. Earlier today, John and Scott expressed their dismay, and I have expressed mine. But the GOP’s rush to sell out the party’s base, not to mention American workers, in order to service the interests of business won’t be halted by advocacy. Activism is required. My sources on the »

Meet Alex Mooney

Featured image I wrote here about Alex Mooney’s campaign for Congress. Alex seeks to represent West Virginia’s second congressional district. The seat has for years been held by Shirley Moore Capito, a moderate Republican who is now running for the Senate. As I explained in my earlier post, Alex, whom I’ve known for some time, is the most conservative candidate in the race who is electable. I’m also told that he has »

House Republican leadership to push for formal amnesty

Featured image Politico reports on the House Republican leadership’s approach to immigration reform for this year. As set forth by Paul Ryan, it will consist of four pieces of legislation to be voted on separately. The first bill would provide amnesty but not path to citizenship for illegal immigrants. The second would provide a path to citizenship for illegals who came as teenagers or younger. The third would require the tracking of »

A window into the White House’s view of House Republicans

Featured image John Podesta, who is about to join the Obama administration as a top adviser, should fit right in. In an interview with Politico, Podesta stated that the White House “need[s] to focus on executive action given that they are facing a second term against a cult worthy of Jonestown in charge of one of the houses of Congress.” Jonestown — an avowedly leftist enterprise — was where followers of James »

Live-blogging Kathleen Sebelius’ testimony

Featured image Good morning. Chairman Upton of the House Energy and Commerce Committee has just commenced today’s hearing in which Secretary Sebelius will testify. Here is my account of the proceedings: 9:04: Upton wastes no time in blasting Sebelius. “Malfunctions have become the norm,” he says, as he zeroes in the website glitches. He also mentions the problems of loss of insurance and sticker shock on the policies available on the exchanges. »

Woeful testimony about Obamacare’s woes

Featured image I didn’t watch the testimony today of Marilyn Tavenner, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, before the House Ways and Means Committee. But according to this report from Politico’s David Nather, it did not go well for the Obama administration: [Tavenner] apologized right away for the technological missteps that are preventing millions of Americans from using the federal enrollment website. That drew a vivid contrast with the »

Sebelius to testify; Power Line to live-blog it (Corrected)

Featured image Kathleen Sebelius is scheduled to testimony tomorrow morning [correction: Wednesday morning] before the House Energy and Commerce Committee. The hearing — “PPACA Implementation Failures: Answers from HHS” — will start at 9:00 a.m. I assume that C-SPAN will carry the proceedings. If so, I will live-blog them, at least for a while. It will be interesting to see whether, or to what extent, Democrats on the Committee criticize Sebelius and/or »