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Schedule: The House and Senate are back from their one-week recess, and will remain in session for the next three weeks.
Legislative Highlight of the Week: The Senate voted on Monday to pass the Marketplace Fairness Act, S. 743. This is the bill that would allow states to collect taxes on internet sales from businesses outside their borders. FreedomWorks has opposed this bill all the way, and will continue to do so as it passes over to the House, where its future is uncertain.
Senate/Regulation: The Senate will likely vote this week on the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA), S. 601. Sponsored by Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), this bill is an amalgamation of programs involving waterways and ports, and is loaded with local pork spending. It also extends federal funding guarantees to a number of projects that ought to be the responsibilities of the states or localities involved. FreedomWorks opposes this bill.
House & Senate/Agriculture: During the next few weeks, the House and Senate will both be taking up the Farm Bill in committee. The Farm Bill, which has traditionally been renewed in five-year increments, is a massive package of direct payments to farm corporations, price supports for favored industries, and crop insurance programs, and it also contains the food stamp program (officially known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP). For more information on this huge spending bill, and the reforms that need to be made to it, join FreedomWorks on Tap this Wednesday, May 8th, at 7PM at live.freedomworks.org.
House/Debt Ceiling: With the latest debt ceiling extension set to expire on May 18th, the House will vote this week on an important bill called the Full Faith and Credit Act, H.R. 807. Sponsored by Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA), this bill simply directs the Treasury Department to prioritize certain mandatory payments in the event that the U.S. reaches the debt ceiling and can no support its government spending by borrowing. Basically, this means that as the debt ceiling approaches Obama can no longer threaten that America will default on its debt or that seniors will stop receiving Social Security payments if the debt ceiling isn’t raised. FreedomWorks supports this bill.
House/Labor: The House will also be working on the Working Families Flexibility Act, H.R. 1406. Sponsored by Martha Roby (R-AL), this bill modifies federal labor laws to allow employers to give comp. time to employees in lieu of overtime pay. This has been allowed in the public sector for some time.