This Week in Congress Wrap-up

Here is the roll-call vote on H.R. 9, the resolution voiding President Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accords.

Every Democrat voted for the resolution while every Republican except three voted no. The three Republicans who voted yes are:

Elsie Stefanik (NY-21)

Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01)

Vern Buchanan (FL-16)

Yesterday, the Senate failed to override President Trump’s veto of the resolution forbidding continued US involvement in the Yemen Civil War.

You can see that roll-call vote here.

Every Democrat voted to override Trump’s veto while most Republicans voted no, except the following:

Steve Daines (R-MT)

Mike Lee (R-UT)

Jerry Moran (R-KS)

Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)

Rand Paul (R-KY)

Before leaving for “spring break,” Congress passed H.R. 1857, which made changes to the IRS to make it more consumer friendly.

One part of the bill that has generated controversy concerns language prohibiting the government from offering free services run by the IRS—choosing instead to partner with private online services like TurboTax to offer a free file online program that is only available to low-income individuals.

What critics of the free-file program don’t tell you is they want the IRS to do everybody’s  taxes and simply send us a bill. Under this system, the IRS would likely need to collect more personal information about you to figure out your deductions.

If you discover they made a mistake, good luck getting it changed since under this system, you would have to file an appeal with the IRS! If you lose the first case, you can always appeal to a federal court, but the judge is likely to grant great discretion to the IRS.

Of course, the ultimate answer to this is to repeal the 17TH Amendment and get rid of the income tax.

As Campaign for Liberty Chairman Ron Paul pointed out, taxes cannot be cut as long as government continues to spend trillions on the welfare-warfare State. And excessive spending is not coming to an end any time soon.

Which brings us to something else the House did before leaving for spring break. The House cancelled a vote on H.R. 2023, which increases welfare spending by 5.7% to $630 billion and warfare spending by 2.1% to $664 billion. Progressives wanted more domestic spending while moderate Democrats wanted the spending increases offset. Republicans objected to the increase in welfare spending (good) while demanding more spending on warfare (bad).

Since they could not pass the spending bill as a stand-alone measure, they snuck legislation (H.Res. 293) into the rule for the bill retiring federal “net neutrality” and giving the Chairman of the Budget Committee authority to set spending limits contained in H.R. 2023.

The rule “deemed” the resolution passed by the House—so the House will never take a stand-alone roll-call vote on this spending increase.  And by putting the resolution into the rule at the last minute they ensured many members would not even know they were voting for this spending increase!

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