It’s the Most Dangerous Time of the Legislative Year

Aaron Flint posted on December 01, 2014 18:54 :: 1807 Views

It’s the most dangerous time of the legislative year- the lame duck session between Thanksgiving and Christmas. You never know what they’re going to try to stuff in at the last minute…maybe a controversial wilderness bill in Montana or two?   

The Hill: Will lame duck limp to Christmas?

The 113th Congress is scheduled to conclude by Dec. 11, but the fight over government spending could keep lawmakers here closer to Christmas.

Still, given the flare-up in conservative circles over President Obama’s executive actions to provide legal status and work permits for up to five million undocumented immigrants, meeting the Dec. 11 timeframe could be a tough hurdle.

The government will shut down on Dec. 12 if lawmakers don’t agree to a new funding bill by then. In the past, short-term measures have been approved to buy more time.

Here’s a great question raised by a couple of Democratic activists on the Montana Politics Twitter discussion:

The Missoulian: Will lame duck Congress pass Montana wilderness, logging bills?

In the lame-duck weeks of December 2010, Sen. Jon Tester tried to get his Forest Jobs and Recreation Act attached to any must-pass legislation likely to make it out of Congress before the end of the year.

The effort failed.

But this December has a much larger slate of Montana-related lands bills looking for a vote, and a Democratic Senate caucus about to lose its majority status in January. That’s got a lot of congressional watchers wondering what last-minute legislation might wind up under President Barack Obama’s Christmas tree.

While Tester said in October he would be “looking for opportunities” in the three weeks of the lame-duck session to move FJRA and other bills, his office would not provide any specific strategy or schedule before the Thanksgiving break.

The article also mentioned the controversial Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act (RMFHA); however, there was no mention of support for passing this legislation during the lame duck by any members of the Montana Congressional Delegation.

From The Wall Street Journal’s Capital Journal on Monday morning:  FUNDING DEADLINE TOPS CONGRESS’S AGENDA

Lawmakers returning to Capitol Hill today will have less than two weeks to figure out how to keep the government funded amid a bitter fight between Republicans and the White House over immigration. With government funding set to expire Dec. 11, top Democrats and Republicans had hoped to pass a so-called omnibus measure that would tie together tailored spending bills to fund the government through September 2015. Democrats, who will give up control of the Senate next month, want to seal in deals that stretch as far into next year as possible, while GOP leaders want to finish lingering 2014 business so they can start the new year by showing they can pass Republican-leaning legislation.

Jim Geraghty with National Review:

Conservative War Chest’s commercial, hitting President Obama for treating the results of the midterm elections as if they don’t count, has more than 130,000 views on YouTube since being posted Friday.

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