April 21, 2014 |
Thousands of bills are introduced in a congressional session, but only a fraction become law. Even without that success, they call attention to their causes - or their sponsors. Here are a few of the eclectic measures awaiting action in Congress. Apollo Lunar Landing Legacy Act: Would establish the Apollo Lunar Landing Sites National Historical Park on the moon. Argument for: "In 1969, led by the late Apollo astronaut Neil Armstrong, American ingenuity changed history as humanity took a giant leap forward on the surface of the moon," said Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 15, 2014 |
On the same day a new poll showed Americans still don't think much of Congress, several California candidates tried to show their solidarity with people on taxes. Some, including Republican congressional candidates Doug Ose, Tony Strickland and Paul Chabot, took Tuesday's state and federal income tax filing deadline to criticize government spending. "Tax Day is a stark reminder of just how much the government is over-taxing our country," Strickland said in a statement released by his campaign, while Ose and Chabot signed the "Tax Protection Pledge" to oppose all tax increases.
April 12, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - The U.S. made clear this week that it wants the International Monetary Fund to be the emergency lender for countries like Ukraine, but American lawmakers have persistently refused to give the IMF the additional financial firepower that it has sought. That tension was evident in meetings concluding this weekend of the IMF, the World Bank and representatives of the Group of 20 major economies: Washington's long delay in ratifying changes to the IMF's so-called quota system came under fire from finance ministers and other officials of many countries.
April 11, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - The White House will block Iran's choice of United Nations ambassador from entering the United States, officials said Friday, stoking new tension between Tehran and Washington as they approach a critical moment in negotiations over Iran's disputed nuclear program. Facing overwhelming bipartisan pressure from Congress, White House officials said Hamid Aboutalebi would not be granted a U.S. visa. The choice of the veteran diplomat set off an outcry in Washington because of his membership in the radical student group that stormed the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and held U.S. diplomats hostage during Iran's 1979 revolution.
April 10, 2014 |
How's this for irony: Having allowed federal unemployment benefits to run out in December, some lawmakers are balking at a bill to renew them retroactively because it might be hard to figure out who should receive them. Congress made this task far harder than it should have been, but the technical challenges aren't insurmountable. Lawmakers should restore the benefits now and leave them in place until the unemployment rate reaches a more reasonable level. Federal jobless benefits, which are provided only in times of high unemployment, kick in after people have exhausted their state benefits, which typically last for six months.
April 9, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - After meeting with Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, leaders of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus voiced confidence Wednesday that if the Republican-led House fails to undertake immigration reform this year, the administration will act by executive action. Last month, President Obama promised Latino leaders that his administration would review its deportation policy and enforce laws "more humanely. " Under Obama, deportations hit the 2-million mark, often separating families.