Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., still has not sent the Schumer-Rubio immigration bill over to the House for a vote, which will instead focus on Obamacare’s implementation troubles this week.
Hearings on the delays
Two House Committees, the Ways and Means Committee and the Energy and Commerce Committee, will both hold hearings on President Obama’s decision to delay key parts of his signature health care law this week. On Wednesday, the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health will hear testimony from Senior Advisor to the Secretary and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Retirement and Health Policy Mark Iwry about the delay of Obamacare’s employer mandate penalties and insurance exchange reporting requirements. “The White House also needs to come clean with the American people,” Health Subcommittee Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas, said when announcing the hearing last week, “if Obamacare is not ready, as this decision implies, then why didn’t the Administration delay both the employer mandate and the individual mandate?”
The House Energy and Commerce Committee will hold its own hearing Thursday on the same topic, but no administration witnesses have yet been confirmed.
Votes on the delays
Also on Wednesday, House Republican leaders have scheduled votes on two bills addressing Obamacare’s implementation woes. First, the House will vote on the Authority for Mandate Delay Act, which would formally legalize what many Republicans believe was Obama’s illegal decision to delay the employer mandate for a year. Second, the House will vote on the Fairness for American Families Act, which would extend Obama’s employer mandate to delay to the individual mandate.
“The unpopular individual mandate punishes Americans and infringes on individual freedom. The employer mandate is just as bad since it will kill jobs and harm our economy. Obamacare is full of deficiencies, and this legislation proves yet again: Obamacare is unworkable,” Dr. Charles Boustany, R-La., chairman of the Ways and Means Committee’s Oversight Subcommittee, said of both bills.
Passage in doubt
Even if the House did manage to pass both bills, it is highly unlikely the Senate would consider either of them. But the House may not even get that far. Some conservatives in the House are dead set against any changes to Obamacare, even ones that might make the law harder to enforce. These conservatives believe a full repeal of Obamacare is the only good policy.
A failure on either vote will be yet another sign that Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, has little control over his caucus on any issue.
From The Washington Examiner
Byron York: Senate GOP braces for nuclear option
Joel Gehrke: MSNBC’s Al Sharpton asked DOJ to charge George Zimmerman with hate crime
Charlie Spiering: Eliot Spitzer says George Zimmerman verdict a failure of justice
Sean Higgins: AFL-CIO pondering accepting non-union members
Steve Contorno: NAACP in talks with Justice Department about pursuing Trayvon Martin case
In Other News
The Los Angeles Times, LAPD clashes with Trayvon Martin protesters, 1 arrest made: The Los Angeles Police Department was tracking several protests Sunday related to the Trayvon Martin verdict, including one that turned violent with police firing bean bag rounds.
McClatchy Newspapers, Inside the immigration bill, Details, bureaucracy and pork: Few lawmakers have read the Senate’s 1,198-page blueprint for overhauling the nation’s immigration system, which is full of exacting details, excruciating bureaucracy and a little pork.
Associated Press, Snowden docs contain NSA blueprint: Edward Snowden has very sensitive “blueprints” detailing how the National Security Agency operates that would allow someone who read them to evade or even duplicate NSA surveillance.
Missoulian, Schweitzer won’t run for U.S. Senate seat: Former Gov. Brian Schweitzer shocked the Montana and national political establishments Saturday with his announcement that he wouldn’t run for an open U.S. Senate in 2014 as many had expected.
Paul Krugman attacks Republicans for not including food stamps in the farm bill.
Ta-Nehisi Coates says Zimmerman planned to kill Trayvon.
Think Progress says The George Zimmerman Mindset Has Rigged The Justice System Against Young Black Men.
Eliana Johnson previews Thursday’s Oversight Committee hearing on the IRS’s targeting of tea-party groups.
James Pethokoukis takes another look at Obamacare, the employer mandate, and the rise of part-time America.
Erick Erickson asks Obama to let the country move on from the Zimmerman trial.