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Entries in US Senate (3)

Wednesday
Apr102013

Immigration Bill Delayed, Likely Not Ready Until Next Week

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Wednesday’s expected Senate briefing on the Gang of Eight immigration bill was postponed.

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., was scheduled to explain the nearly finished proposal, but senators coming out of the closed-door meeting on Capitol Hill told reporters that the gun issue took up the entire agenda.

Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., a powerful critic of immigration reform, said the Gang of Eight was not ready.

Sessions said, “I guess he wasn’t ready. They didn’t seem to be interested in doing that,” he told reporters. “I didn’t get the impression there was any interest to get that done today [among the Gang of Eight]. The impression I got was that they hoped to be able to do it next week.”

Sen. Jeff Flake, a Republican of Arizona and one of the Gang of Eight, told reporters the bill could be ready by Friday or slip into next week.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Mar172013

Senate Aims to Pass Six-Month Stopgap Bill to Fund Government

Comstock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- This week, the Senate will attempt to stave off a government shutdown by working to pass a continuing resolution in order to keep the government funded.

The continuing resolution, known in Washington shorthand as the CR, is a stopgap appropriations measure. Congress is up against a March 27 deadline to keep the government funded for the rest of the fiscal year, which ends in September.

The CR was approved by the House of Representatives last week but hit roadblocks this week in the Senate, stalled by amendments, battles over amendments and some senators objecting due to not even having time to read the actual text.

“To not allow us the time to assess what you have produced by being able to read and study the bill goes against the best traditions of the Senate,” Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., said on the floor of the Senate this week. “Are we just to blindly say that we approve this bill because we have a deadline at the end of the month?”

The Senate bill keeps the same spending levels as the House bill, setting the top-line overall rate of spending at $982 billion, down from $1.043 trillion the previous fiscal year, but adds three appropriations measures — for homeland security and commerce; agriculture; and justice and science funds.

Over the weekend, key senators will work to come up with amendments to the bill and the Senate is expected to vote next week towards passage, a message communicated by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., to senators on Thursday evening as they left Washington for their home states.

“We need to move forward cautiously but quickly. We have next week,” Reid said on the Senate floor late Thursday night, asking for a small list of amendments “that we think would improve this bill and not further develop the ire of the speaker [House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio], who’s kind of in charge of a lot of what we do around here.”

The bill, when tweaked by the Senate, must be passed again by the House of Representatives.

Boehner has said that so far it does not look like the Senate’s changes to the CR will cause much of an uproar in the House of Representatives, meaning the bill as produced by the Senate could be easily and swiftly passed to President Obama for his final signature.

“I’ll wait and see what the Senate produces once it comes off the floor,” Boehner said this week of the Senate’s bill. “So far, so good.”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Monday
Dec272010

Miller Will Not Oppose Certification of U.S. Senate Race

Photo Courtesy - Joe Miller for US Senate(FAIRBANKS, Alaska) -- Joe Miller, Republican nominee for U.S. Senate, will not oppose state certification of the U.S. Senate race in Alaska. For the sake of the integrity of the election, Miller will go forward with the federal suit, which was filed last month, but required a final determination by the Alaska state court to proceed further. He will be filing a motion in federal court to stay the post certification election contest timeline until after the federal case has concluded.     

“After careful consideration and seeking the counsel of people whose opinion I respect and trust, I have decided that the federal case must go forward," Miller said. "The integrity of the election is vital and ultimately the rule of law must be our standard. Nevertheless, I have also decided to withdraw our opposition to the certification of the election, ensuring that Alaska will have its full delegation seated when the 112th Congress convenes next month. This decision will allow Alaskans to focus on bringing fairness and transparency to our elections process without distraction of the certification issue.”  

In its court filings, the Miller legal team pointed out several issues that require further review including: whether the U.S. Constitution’s election clause was violated by ignoring the legislature’s mandatory provisions for write-in candidates; whether the U.S. Constitution’s equal protection clause was violated by the different vote counting standards that were applied, dependent on the candidate in question; and other issues such as at least hundreds of felons voting and at least hundreds of ballots being filled out by a handful of people.  

Miller stated, “We want the end result of this legal action to be for the people of Alaska to not only have full faith in the outcome of this race, but a confidence in the manner in which elections will be conducted in our state in the future. Election integrity is vital.”

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio