Don’t shoot the messenger.
I told you that I was going to be honest with you:
“When the 115th Congress begins this week, with Republicans firmly in charge of the House and Senate, much of that legislation will form the basis of the most ambitious conservative policy agenda since the 1920s. And rather than a Democratic president standing in the way, a soon-to-be-inaugurated Donald Trump seems ready to sign much of it into law.
The dynamic reflects just how ready Congress is to push through a conservative makeover of government, and how little Trump’s unpredictable, attention-grabbing style matters to the Republican game plan.
That plan was long in the making.
Almost the entire agenda has already been vetted, promoted and worked over by Republicans and think tanks that look at the White House less for leadership and more for signing ceremonies.
In 2012, Americans for Tax Reform’s Grover Norquist described the ideal president as “a Republican with enough working digits to handle a pen” and “sign the legislation that has already been prepared.” …”
What’s going on here?
Apparently, the Paul Ryan game plan is to go after Obamacare, Dodd-Frank, cut taxes and pass the REINS Act (Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny) which is a top priority of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. George Will thinks signing REINS into law should be Trump’s top priority on January 21st.
What do you think? You’re probably Googling the REINS Act because you have never heard of it. I closely followed the campaign and don’t remember it ever coming up. Basically, Paul Ryan is claiming a mandate to push the same legislative agenda he would have advanced if someone like ¡Jeb! or Marco Rubio had won the election.
Here comes the Paul Ryan agenda:
“The 115th Congress begins Tuesday with a full slate of business, though nothing will be more politically important or pressing for Republicans than repealing ObamaCare. …
Lawmakers will also look at a tax overhaul, reversing Obama-era environmental regulations and other conservative priorities. …
The Senate plans to begin repealing ObamaCare on Tuesday with consideration of a procedural measure that will shield them from Democratic filibuster legislation annulling much of that statute. …
McConnell, Ky., and House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., also want a massive tax overhaul, with the goal of simplifying a complicated tax code that rewards wealthy people with smart accountants as well as corporations that can easily shift profits and jobs overseas.
It would be the first major tax overhaul in 30 years. Trump has also advocated a tax overhaul, but with fewer details. He promises a tax cut for every income level, with more low-income families paying no income tax at all.”
Ryan and McConnell want to squander Trump’s political capital by using the election as a mandate to stir up huge fights with the Left over heathcare, taxes and deregulating Wall Street. This could quickly consume all of 2017.
Update: The Wall Street Journal has more on the Ryan agenda:
“WASHINGTON—The nation’s new, all-Republican leadership begins to take power Tuesday with an ambitious agenda of tax cuts, regulation rollbacks and repeal of President Barack Obama’s health law, but they face a complicated legislative path pocked with unresolved policy details. …
Taking up another foreign-policy debate, the House this week is expected to vote on a resolution disapproving of the Obama administration’s decision to allow the United Nations Security Council to condemn Israel’s expansion of Jewish settlements in Palestinian areas. The House vote will be an early sign of support for Mr. Trump, who urged the U.S. to veto the U.N. resolution. …
To reduce the regulatory burden on business, the House this week plans a vote on a bill known as the REINS Act, which would empower Congress to approve major new regulations written by federal agencies. The House also plans to vote on a measure to allow Congress to repeal a block of regulations at one time. …
A rewrite of the tax code is likely to be more of a slog than a sprint. Republicans want to make the farthest-reaching tax-code changes since 1986, lowering marginal rates on individuals and businesses and repealing the estate tax. They aim to use a legislative strategy that relies only on GOP votes, but it will require Republicans to unify around a single plan and fight past any interest groups that feel threatened.”
Passing a resolution to condemn the UN for being too critical of Israel will also be another top priority for the Republican Congress in January.
CNN has more on the first 100 days agenda:
“Washington (CNN)”Buckle up” was the advice Vice President-elect Mike Pence gave Hill Republicans about the hectic pace ahead for Capitol Hill’s first 100 days in 2017. …
Obama’s announcement last week of new sanctions against Russia for its cyberattacks during the presidential election are putting Hill Republicans in a tough spot. Virtually all the top GOP leaders in Congress publicly backed the sanctions, although they criticized how long it took to put them in place, along with the administration’s overall foreign policy. …
McCain, along with South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, have vowed to draft legislation imposing additional sanctions to penalize Russia, and Democrats have agreed to craft a bipartisan proposal.
Both McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan have publicly denounced Russia’s moves, but any bipartisan push to move sanctions legislation puts them in the precarious spot of using valuable time in the first 100 days of the new administration on an issue that puts them at odds with Trump.”
John McCain and Lindsay Graham want to craft new legislation to impose further sanctions on Russia which Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell endorsed.