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Capitol Correspondence - 01.16.18

GOP Leaders Considering Skipping 2018 Federal Budget Process

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According to Politico:

“White House and Hill GOP leaders discussed the possibility of forgoing the painful budget process during last weekend’s Camp David legislative summit, according to four sources familiar with the talks. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has argued that he cannot pass controversial deficit-reduction legislation using powerful budget procedures with his new 51-vote majority — and wasn’t even sure he could find the votes for a fiscal blueprint in the first place.

But more importantly, it would mean the GOP’s 2018 agenda would be sharply limited: Only with passage of a joint House-Senate budget can Republicans deploy reconciliation tools, which allow them to circumvent the Senate filibuster and bypass Democrats, as they did on last year’s successful tax bill and failed Obamacare repeal push.

That means no entitlement reform or welfare overhaul in 2018, a key priority for fiscal conservatives eager to shrink the now $20 trillion federal debt. Instead, President Donald Trump wants to focus on enacting a massive infrastructure package with help from Democrats. And conservatives are not happy about it.” Read the full article here