GAVEL DOWN: Closing out the Week in Congress

Puerto Rico defaulted on largest debt payment so far, as lawmakers work on new legislative solution to the island’s debt crisis. Several much anticipated rules (proposed and final) were released this week. Treasury Department announced efforts to stem tax fraud, largely in response to Panama Papers. House and Senate were on recess, working back home; both […]

GAVEL DOWN: Closing out the week in Congress

The President announced a Supreme Court nominee and found common ground with the House in calling actions by ISIS "genocide." The House Budget Committee approved a proposal. The Senate failed to advance an GMO labeling bill. Top Search on POPVOX this week: "HUMAN TRAFFICKING"   H.R. 3381 CHILDHOOD CANCER STAR ACT President Obama nominated Merrick […]

WEEKLY UPDATE: The Week Ahead in Congress

The House returns and will take up bills to officially call violence by ISIS "genocide", to grant observer status to Taiwan in the International Criminal Police Organization, and to address several technical issues related to regulated utilities and broadband.  Condemning violence by ISIS as "genocide," calling for war crimes tribunal A provision in last year's Omnibus bill […]

Issue Spotlight: President Obama Oval Office Address on Security & Terrorism

On Sunday night, President Obama addressed the nation. In the speech, he discussed the tragedy of San Bernardino, which he called “an act of terrorism designed to kill innocent people.” He discussed the military strategy against ISIS: Air strikes in Iraq and Syria and “hunt[ing] down terrorist plotters in any country where it is necessary.” […]

Should Congress authorize the use of force against ISIS?

  February 2015: President Obama requested authorization from Congress (Read the President’s letter to Congress.) By April, House GOP leaders said that there was “no path to 218 votes” on the President’s plan. In May, then-Speaker John Boehner criticized the President’s approach: “The president’s request for an authorization of the use of military force calls […]

The Week Ahead in Congress: November 23rd-27th

With Congress in recess this week for Thanksgiving, here’s a look at bills related to military action against ISIS, safeguards and funding for admission of Syrian refugees — and whether states have the authority to refuse refugees. Before leaving for recess last week, the House and Senate reached bipartisan agreement on replacing No Child Left […]

Issue Spotlight: Refugee Policies and U.S. Strategy for Combatting ISIS/ISIL/D’aesh

The horrific attacks in Paris have intensified ongoing discussions about the American strategy for combatting ISIS — or “ISIL” or “D’aesh. (See: Why John Kerry and the French president are calling ISIS “Daesh.”) It has also brought some to express concerns about refugee resettlement policies for those fleeing ISIS, ongoing human rights violations in Syria, and […]