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Families First Last Shot Could Be CR

The fate of the Families First Act, in these last few days of Congress rests with a continuing resolution as the last possible vehicle for enactment. Congressional sponsors are asking advocates to weigh-in with House and Senate leadership to move the bill as part of a CR that must be passed before Congress wraps up.  

Congressman Tom Price Selected as Next HHS Secretary

Congressman Tom Price (R-GA) was nominated by President-Elect Donald Trump to become the next Secretary of Health and Human Services.  Congressman Price was a practicing doctor before he entered politics.  He has been a major supporter of a repeal of the Affordable Care Act.  In the past, he has introduced his own proposal that is

CR Up This Week and Congress Leaves

Funding for FY 2017 runs out on December 9.  If Congress wraps up by Thursday this Congress will come to an end.  Congressional Republicans, working with the in-coming Administration, will partially extend current year funding into the spring instead of finishing the fiscal year decisions. All last week Republican leaders from both houses were behind

Likely Two Reconciliations Next Year, ACA Repeal and Delay

It appears more likely that there will be two reconciliation measures next year.  The first will be implemented through an FY 2017 budget resolution so that it can be used early in the year.  The second would be implemented through a budget resolution for 2018. The first reconciliation will likely be used to repeal the

Possible Bipartisan Senate Support to Protect DACA Kids

One critical Executive Order that President Obama issued regarding immigration policy may garner some bipartisan support in the Senate. There were reports this week that Senator Lindsay Graham (R-SC) and Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL) were discussing ways to protect more than 740,000 young undocumented students from any E.O. or action by incoming President Donald Trump

Congress Back, May Move Families First With Cures Bill

Congress returns for what is likely to be the last sprint for the 114th Congress.  As part of that they are likely to move an updated version of the Families First Act (Conference Report 114-628)as part of a larger package of legislation. Congress may agree to a “21st Century Cures” bill that seeks to add

What Is A Reconciliation

There has been a great deal of discussion in the last few weeks of how the new Congress and the Trump Administration will use the budget reconciliation process. What is the budget reconciliation and why is it so important? Budget reconciliation is a tool used by the Congress to enact spending reductions or increases in

Congress Eyes CR Until March

Late last week Vice-President elect Mike Pence was working with House Republicans to adopt a continuing resolution (CR) that would extend FY 2017 funding into the end of March of next year.  Current funding for 11 of the 12 appropriations bills run out on December 9.  The goal of a March extension is that the

Could the Families First Act Passage Protect Title IV-E from Block Grant?

Would enactment of the Families First Act commit key Republicans leaders to protecting Title IV-E funding from being converted into a block grant?  That is a question to consider in the waning days of the 114th Congress.  Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WS) has made no secret of his desire to convert both Medicaid and SNAP/food stamps

ACA: Repeal and Delay—Through Reconciliation

Incoming Republicans are speaking of using the reconciliation process twice next year with the first one used to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Some speculate that could take place as early as late January.  The mantra for opponents of the ACA for over six years has been “repeal and replace’ but the replace part is