BCA's Washington Briefing

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The U.S. House sent President Obama a bill to repeal Obamacare but Obama vetoed it today.

The Wednesday vote of 240-181 was almost entirely along party lines. Alabama's six House Republicans voted to repeal Obamacare while the state's sole Democrat voted against the GOP-backed measure.

Even though Obama long threatened to veto the measure, Republicans touted the vote as an important step toward reversing the Affordable Care Act if the party wins the White House in November, The Hill reported.

"It's no surprise that someone named Obama vetoed a bill repealing Obamacare. But we will hold a vote to override this veto, taking this process all the way to the end under the Constitution," Ryan said in a statement.  Ryan said the vote showed there is a "clear path" for Republicans to repeal the law.

Republicans promised in 2014 to repeal Obamacare. Repealing it would cut federal spending by $1.5 trillion and cut the deficit by $500 billion.

"This law will collapse under its own weight, or it will be repealed," Ryan said. "We have now shown that there is a clear path to repealing Obamacare without 60 votes in the Senate. So, next year, if we're sending this bill to a Republican president, it will get signed into law."

Ryan promised a veto override vote later this month, which would require a two-thirds vote by the House and Senate. The Senate has a Republican majority but Democrats typically block GOP attempts to stop Obama's actions.
The Business Council of Alabama joined 250 other associations and groups in support of a House resolution that will stop the nefarious tactic called "sue and settle." The tactic is used by friendly groups that sue the federal government over environmental, labor, or other issues. In turn, the federal government "settles" with plaintiffs without allowing others to intervene, to the detriment of businesses, private property owners, citizens, and open government.

H.R. 712, the "Sunshine for Regulatory Decrees and Settlements Act," will make a strong statement toward stopping the abusive "sue and settle" practice by allowing Congress and the public to participate in the rulemaking process by federal agencies under the control of the executive branch. The House Rules Committee on Tuesday voted to send H.R. 712 to the full House for consideration.

The BCA supports efforts, spearheaded by the BCA's national partner, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, to make federal agencies more accountable to the American public and improve agency transparency.

H.R. 712 embodies major principles of accountability, transparency, and fairness, principles drawn directly from three regulatory reform bills, the U.S. Chamber said.

The bill would stop agencies that agree with suing organizations to quickly issue rules without notifying the public or states, often resulting in sloppy and illegal regulations. If it becomes law, H.R. 712 would require agencies to give early notice and get public comment on proposed settlement agreements.

Secondly, H.R. 712 would require agencies to disclose rules an agency plans to propose or finalize to the Office of Management and Budget's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs. OIRA would disseminate information about these planned rules to the public, including their estimated costs and benefits, the Chamber said.

Lastly, H.R. 712 would require federal agencies to notify the public of proposed rules each month by posting brief, plain-English summaries of each proposed regulation on www.regulations.gov.


U.S. Chamber Supports the Trans-Pacific Partnership
U.S. Chamber of Commerce (Donohue 1/6) "U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Thomas J. Donohue issued the following statement on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement:

"The U.S. Chamber of Commerce today announces its support for the TPP and pledges to advocate for its approval by Congress. This decision follows careful review of the agreement's text and deliberation by our International Policy Committee and Board of Directors.

"Steep tariffs and other trade barriers too often deny a level playing field for U.S.-made products and services in the Asia-Pacific region. The TPP will remedy this by eliminating all tariffs on U.S. exports of manufactured goods, opening new markets for American agricultural exports, and strengthening trade in services. It will boost economic growth, provide new opportunities for small businesses, and help create American jobs.

"No trade agreement is perfect, and the TPP is no exception. However, the benefits of a trade agreement lie in how it is interpreted, implemented, and enforced. With that in mind, we're rolling up our sleeves to work with the administration, Congress and our TPP partners to ensure the agreement is implemented in a way that maximizes its commercial benefits, including market access, rules, and intellectual property protections. We intend to see this job through to the end-to the agreement's entry-into-force and beyond.

"The TPP will set new standards for trade not only for the Asia-Pacific region but for future trade agreements as well. We strongly encourage the Obama administration to work with Congress to address legitimate concerns expressed by industry and legislators to achieve the highest possible standards for American workers and businesses. Working together we hope to ensure the agreement secures strong bipartisan approval."

US Chamber of Commerce   National Association of Manufacturers
Sixth District
 U. S. Rep. Gary Palmer