Review Category : Poltics

Senate Bill to Reverse Hobby Lobby Decision Fails to Advance

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — The Senate failed to advance a bill Wednesday that would have reversed the contraceptive decision made in the Hobby Lobby case last month.

Sixty votes were needed to invoke cloture on the measure, titled the Protect Women’s Health from Corporate Interference, but the Senate fell three votes short of advancing it.

Three Republicans — Sens. Susan Collins of Maine, Mark Kirk of Illinois and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska — joined Democrats in voting to move the bill forward.

For technical reasons, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid voted against invoking cloture, a move that allows him to bring the bill up for a vote in the future.

“Republicans are not only out of touch with women across America, they’re out of touch with men across America. Hobby Lobby hurts husbands. It hurts wives,” Reid, D-Nev., said after the vote. “It’s unfair to what it does to families.”

“The Supreme Court got Hobby Lobby wrong, and with their vote today, Senate Republicans got it wrong too and women across the country aren’t going to forget it,” Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said after the vote.

Reid said the Senate will vote on the measure again before the end of the year.

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Bipartisan Duo from Texas Takes Lead to Fix Border Crisis

ABC News(WASHINGTON) — A bipartisan duo of lawmakers from the Lone Star State have joined forces to present a Texas-style solution to the nation’s border crisis.

Sen. John Cornyn, a Republican, and Rep. Henry Cuellar, a Democrat, have introduced legislation aimed at easing what’s been called a humanitarian crisis caused by a wave of unaccompanied Central American children who have flowed into the United States across the Mexican border.

“The cartels, the transnational criminal organizations that smuggle people from Central America into the United States, have figured out this loophole in a 2008 law, which dealt with human trafficking,” Cornyn told ABC News in an interview.

“This is part of their business model, exploiting this,” Cornyn continued. “So, what we would do is we would treat children that come from Central America the same…as we do now from children that come in from Mexico.”

The pair’s new bill, known as the Humane Act, would speed up the process by which the undocumented children currently stuck in legal limbo in the United States would have their cases heard by a judge. Cuellar noted that there are currently 375,000 such children waiting for a judicial hearing.

“It takes three to five years to have a hearing,” Cuellar said. “So just like we are used in America to a speedy trial date, we’re going to give them a speedy trial date so they won’t have to wait three to five years to present their claim for asylum.”

The bill, which was sharply criticized by several Democrats and immigrant-rights groups, calls for shortening the waiting period from years to a matter of only seven days. It also requires the judge to deliver a ruling within 72 hours of the case being heard.

“If you have credible fears of persecution in your home country, you might be eligible for asylum,” Cornyn explained. “But otherwise you’re going to have to go back home and come back in the right way, and so this is something can be done on an expedited basis.”

Cuellar, recently back from a Congressional trip to Central America, said that although there is an undeniable humanitarian element to the crisis — with many of these children fleeing from situations of violence and poverty — the bigger factor at play is that the drug cartels have a business incentive in bringing the children across the U.S. border.

“The drug cartels found an incentive, and this is what we’re trying to cut off — this incentive,” Cuellar said. “Did you know that they’re even using social media? Social media saying, ‘If you get recruited, we’ll give you a rebate if you bring another child with you.’”

Cuellar also pointed out that the flow of children out of their home countries is causing a “brain drain” problem for Central America.

“They’re taking young kids with potentials away from their countries,” Cuellar said. “There’s a superhighway where the drug cartels have routes. They can move people, they can move drugs, and now they’re moving, of course, young kids.”

President Obama recently asked Congress to authorize $3.7 billion in emergency funds to address the border crisis, but Cornyn said he would not vote to support the request for money, because he said the president’s request won’t solve the problem.

“What Henry and I have tried to do is give them a roadmap on how to fix this gap, this problem with the 2008 law, that none of us would’ve dreamed of at the time,” he said. “Essentially we all voted for it, but now it’s been exploited by the cartels. And if we fix that, then I think we can resolve this, at least this narrow part of the immigration puzzle very quickly.”

Cuellar, though a Democrat, has also been critical of Obama’s handling of the current border crisis. He pointed out that while Obama criticized President George W. Bush for only flying over the wreckage caused by Hurricane Katrina a week after the storm first hit the Gulf Coast, Obama has not visited the border to see the unfolding humanitarian crisis.

“All I’m saying is if he’s asking for $3.7 billion and he’s calling this a humanitarian crisis, doesn’t that call for a visit?” Cuellar said. “I invite the president to come down there to see the human faces. When you talk to Emilia from Honduras, 90 years old, or 14-year-old Miguel from El Salvador, you’ve got to see the human, humanitarian crisis that I’ve seen so many times.”

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Bipartisan Duo from Texas Takes Lead to Fix Border Crisis

ABC News(WASHINGTON) — A bipartisan duo of lawmakers from the Lone Star State have joined forces to present a Texas-style solution to the nation’s border crisis.

Sen. John Cornyn, a Republican, and Rep. Henry Cuellar, a Democrat, have introduced legislation aimed at easing what’s been called a humanitarian crisis caused by a wave of unaccompanied Central American children who have flowed into the United States across the Mexican border.

“The cartels, the transnational criminal organizations that smuggle people from Central America into the United States, have figured out this loophole in a 2008 law, which dealt with human trafficking,” Cornyn told ABC News in an interview.

“This is part of their business model, exploiting this,” Cornyn continued. “So, what we would do is we would treat children that come from Central America the same…as we do now from children that come in from Mexico.”

The pair’s new bill, known as the Humane Act, would speed up the process by which the undocumented children currently stuck in legal limbo in the United States would have their cases heard by a judge. Cuellar noted that there are currently 375,000 such children waiting for a judicial hearing.

“It takes three to five years to have a hearing,” Cuellar said. “So just like we are used in America to a speedy trial date, we’re going to give them a speedy trial date so they won’t have to wait three to five years to present their claim for asylum.”

The bill, which was sharply criticized by several Democrats and immigrant-rights groups, calls for shortening the waiting period from years to a matter of only seven days. It also requires the judge to deliver a ruling within 72 hours of the case being heard.

“If you have credible fears of persecution in your home country, you might be eligible for asylum,” Cornyn explained. “But otherwise you’re going to have to go back home and come back in the right way, and so this is something can be done on an expedited basis.”

Cuellar, recently back from a Congressional trip to Central America, said that although there is an undeniable humanitarian element to the crisis — with many of these children fleeing from situations of violence and poverty — the bigger factor at play is that the drug cartels have a business incentive in bringing the children across the U.S. border.

“The drug cartels found an incentive, and this is what we’re trying to cut off — this incentive,” Cuellar said. “Did you know that they’re even using social media? Social media saying, ‘If you get recruited, we’ll give you a rebate if you bring another child with you.’”

Cuellar also pointed out that the flow of children out of their home countries is causing a “brain drain” problem for Central America.

“They’re taking young kids with potentials away from their countries,” Cuellar said. “There’s a superhighway where the drug cartels have routes. They can move people, they can move drugs, and now they’re moving, of course, young kids.”

President Obama recently asked Congress to authorize $3.7 billion in emergency funds to address the border crisis, but Cornyn said he would not vote to support the request for money, because he said the president’s request won’t solve the problem.

“What Henry and I have tried to do is give them a roadmap on how to fix this gap, this problem with the 2008 law, that none of us would’ve dreamed of at the time,” he said. “Essentially we all voted for it, but now it’s been exploited by the cartels. And if we fix that, then I think we can resolve this, at least this narrow part of the immigration puzzle very quickly.”

Cuellar, though a Democrat, has also been critical of Obama’s handling of the current border crisis. He pointed out that while Obama criticized President George W. Bush for only flying over the wreckage caused by Hurricane Katrina a week after the storm first hit the Gulf Coast, Obama has not visited the border to see the unfolding humanitarian crisis.

“All I’m saying is if he’s asking for $3.7 billion and he’s calling this a humanitarian crisis, doesn’t that call for a visit?” Cuellar said. “I invite the president to come down there to see the human faces. When you talk to Emilia from Honduras, 90 years old, or 14-year-old Miguel from El Salvador, you’ve got to see the human, humanitarian crisis that I’ve seen so many times.”

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Congressional Hopeful Mistakes YMCA Campers for Migrants

Hemera/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — An Arizona Congressional candidate told a rally protesting immigration policies about the fear he saw on the faces of Central American migrant children in custody — and tweeted out a photo of kids on a bus headed for a YMCA camp.

Adam Kwasman, a Republican state legislator running to represent Arizona’s 1st Congressional district, tweeted a photo of a yellow school bus while attending a protest outside of Tucson, with the caption, “Bus coming in. This is not compassion. This is the abrogation of the rule of law.”

“I was able to actually see some of the children in the buses, and the fear on their faces…This is not compassion,” Kwasman told the Arizona Republic.

Turns out the children were not migrants, but campers headed to the YMCA’s Triangle Y Ranch Camp, which offers horseback riding, archery and rock climbing, among other activities.

The buses of immigrant children never showed up, according to the Arizona Republic.

When informed of the mix-up by a reporter, Kwasman said the campers “were sad too” before apologizing.

“OK, I apologize, I’m sorry. I didn’t know. I was leaving when I saw the school bus,” Kwasman said.

He later deleted his tweet and apologized on social media.

Last tweet not the bus of illegal immigrant children. Thank God.

— Adam Kwasman (@AdamKwasman) July 15, 2014

I apologize for the confusion. That was my error

— Adam Kwasman (@AdamKwasman) July 15, 2014

Kwasman, a tea party candidate, will face former Arizona House Majority Leader Andy Tobin and businessman Gary Kiehne in the July 28 Republican primary for Arizona’s first congressional district. The winner will challenge Democratic incumbent Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick.

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Marco Rubio: LeBron James Will Be Economic Boon for Cleveland

US Congress(WASHINGTON) — As a Miami resident and die-hard sports fan, Sen. Marco Rubio was among the disappointed south Floridians last week when LeBron James announced he’d be returning to Cleveland after four years with the Miami Heat.

But despite a confident tweet predicting that Cleveland wouldn’t snag James back, Rubio said the decision makes sense from James’ perspective. He predicted that “King James” will have his number retired by the Heat and will be “very warmly welcomed” by Miami fans whenever he’s back in town.

“This was one of the things we were surprised about, but not in hindsight shouldn’t have been,” Rubio, R-Fla., said in the latest edition of the Capital Games podcast.

“I think if LeBron James is going to make that move back, this is probably the right time to do it, given those young guys that he wants to play with over there — it’s going to take them a couple of years to get ramped up so,” Rubio said.

“And we forget these people have lives. I mean, they don’t just play basketball at night. I mean they have children and families and all sorts of things that surround regular daily life, and I imagine he felt like it was time to go back to Cleveland. So I respect that decision,” the senator added.

James’ time in Miami, Rubio said, contributed to strong economic growth in the downtown area. Residents of northeast Ohio might expect something similar, now that they’re likely to have a competitive basketball franchise again.

“I’m not saying that the real estate market took off because of LeBron James. I’m saying it was a factor,” Rubio said. “I imagine it would be positive [for Ohio]. From a point of view of civic pride, that’s been important.”

The Cavaliers have suffered since James left, Rubio said, but are now “relevant again.”

Rubio also discussed tax issues that face professional athletes, who typically have to file multiple state tax returns for income earned both at home and away games.

He said pro franchises are smart to advertise favorable tax situations in the states they’re based in. States including Florida and Texas have no state income taxes, whereas playing in New York or California means higher taxes and therefore smaller paychecks.

“If you start to add up that money it means that a million-dollar contract in Florida is more than a million-dollar contract in New York,” Rubio said.

The podcast also checked in with Robert Raiola, a prominent accountant who specializes in tax issues surrounding sports. He said teams make their relative tax rates part of their pitches to free agents. And he added that athletes are smart to take that into account.

“What you always say: It’s not what you make, it’s what you’re able to keep away. And these NBA players [have] got to be careful because one day the music is going to stop, and it’s not what you make, it’s what you save,” Raiola said.

Former NBA executive Tom Penn recalled comparing tax rates for free agents as part of the regular pitch when he worked for the Memphis Grizzlies.

“Every time we talked to any free agent whatsoever. We didn’t lead with that, but it was right there, top of the list,” said Penn, now an ESPN NBA analyst. “It’s a real differentiator. …We had our spreadsheets that laid it all out and showed the net effect of working in Tennessee versus working in one of those high income tax states.”

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Former Utah Attorney General Tried to Sell Access to Harry Reid

Ethan Miller/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Charging documents released Tuesday after the arrest of two former Utah attorneys general detailed a battery of corruption and bribery accusations that included the allegation that one of them accepted payments to try and help an embattled local businessman make his case to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

The charging documents quote an email exchange in which former state Attorney General John Swallow allegedly tells the businessman — who was facing a federal fraud investigation — that he could help him gain access to Reid through an intermediary, but it “won’t be cheap.”

The anecdote was a pointed reminder that a case which has made headlines for months in Utah could eventually have national implications.

“This has been a complex, nuanced, large investigation,” said Utah County Prosecutor Sim Gill, a Democrat, who led the joint investigation with Republican Troy Rawlings from neighboring Davis County. “There are multiple players in it, and there have been very productive leads that continue to be investigated.”

Both Swallow and former Attorney General Mark Shurtleff denied the charges, with Shurtleff holding a press conference after being booked to accuse prosecutors of having political motives “all coming to fruition in an election year.” “The allegations against me are completely false,” he told reporters.

With the men facing a combined 23 charges of bribery and corruption in Utah state court, the arrests raised the stakes in a complicated case that has been simmering since November, when Swallow was forced to resign his post in the face of a politically-damaging legislative probe.

With conflicts of interest forcing both state and federal prosecutors to step away from the criminal investigation, the two local prosecutors took on the case with help from a team of FBI agents assigned to them.

ABC News interviewed Gill and Rawlings about their investigation in March, and both said that they had already seen troubling evidence suggesting law enforcement officials needed to expand the examination to look at the campaigns of federal figures, including Reid and Utah Sen. Mike Lee (R). Both investigators said they felt that part of the investigation should fall to public corruption investigators at the Department of Justice.

Specifically, Rawlings said in March that the agents began picking up “bread crumbs” relating to Senator Reid’s contacts with representatives of online poker industry.

“As we do our investigation focusing primarily on the state officials, we are sweeping up these bread crumbs and then, [will] combine them to see where they go,” Rawlings said.

Representatives for Reid and Lee dismissed the comments at the time as the product of political grandstanding. Reached Tuesday, a spokesman for Reid reiterated that view.

“I don’t have anything to add to what we’ve said before, that these are clearly desperate men making things up,” said Adam Jentleson, Reid’s spokesman.

Rawlings declined on Tuesday to speculate about where the case might go next but reiterated there is much work left to be done.

“Our joint investigation with the FBI to this point has not focused on any federal elected official,” Rawlings said. “The charges today, while they remain unchallenged and the defendants are innocent until proven guilty, show that in the state of Utah we are willing to take seriously allegations of political or public corruption against anybody. We’re not going to run from it.”

Reid’s name did surface in charging documents for Swallow, which spelled out a lengthy narrative of events that in part led to the arrests. The documents describe a deal-gone-bad in which prosecutors say Swallow tried to play the role of match-maker. Swallow allegedly took a cut of a $250,000 payment he brokered from Internet marketing mogul Jeremy Johnson, who was facing an investigation into his business by the Federal Trade Commission. In exchange, Swallow promised to enlist the help of a prominent businessman to reach out to Reid on Johnson’s behalf.

Although Johnson paid the money, he never got a meeting with Reid. He was later sued by the FTC and faces fraud charges. He has pleaded not guilty.

The entire episode splashed into public view last year after a local newspaper posted an audio recording on its website in which Swallow and Johnson were discussing the deal. Johnson can be heard urging Swallow to get him his money back because the payments had not yielded help from Reid.

Reid has denied any knowledge of the deal, with his spokesman calling Johnson “a desperate individual who’s been indicted on over 80 counts.”

“His allegations are false and [are] the flailings of a desperate man,” the spokesman said.

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007′s Son Interns on Capitol Hill

Architect of the Capitol(WASHINGTON) — The son of 007 has made his way to Capitol Hill.

Actor Pierce Brosnan’s son Dylan is interning this summer in Sen. Ed Markey’s office.

Pierce Brosnan, best known for playing the role of Bond, James Bond, posted several pictures around Washington two weeks ago, including one shot with his son, 17, and Markey, D-Mass., at the World War II Memorial.

“Senator Ed Markey Dylan and I….world war two memorial…reading the words aloud in the night,” Brosnan wrote on Instagram.

The two Brosnans also took a very James Bond-esque photo in front of the Supreme Court.

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Republicans Accuse Democrats of Misleading Voters About Hobby Lobby Decision to ‘Score Election-Year Points’

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Republicans fired back Tuesday at Democrats’ plans to counter the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision — which allows a contraception exclusion for closely-held companies with religious beliefs — with the GOP members saying they will propose a measure of their own.

It was a dose of election-year reality, dashing Democratic efforts at drawing bipartisan support for their plan.

Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., said the dialogue has been driven away from the religious freedom rationale of the ruling and distorted for political leverage.

“I really am disappointed that my colleagues on the other side of the aisle would try to score election-year points by misrepresenting what the Hobby Lobby decision stands for, and allow American women to believe that the decision affects their access to contraception,” Ayotte told reporters Tuesday.

The tagline “not my boss’s business” that Democrats have used to promote their bill is misleading, Ayotte said, because nothing in the Supreme Court ruling allows an employer to interfere with a woman getting a contraception prescription.

Republicans, she said, will introduce an alternative bill that makes it “very clear that women have the same rights today to access contraception as they did before Obamacare was passed and before the Hobby Lobby decision.”

The proposal, which Republicans are calling the Preserving Religious Freedom and a Woman’s Access to Contraception Act, was written by Ayotte, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Sen. Deb Fischer, R-Neb. It aims to clarify the law and expand access for women to have contraception and increase affordability. It also allocates funding for the FDA to study over-the-counter birth control for effectiveness.

“Our bill will reaffirm that no employer can prohibit an employee from purchasing an FDA-approved drug or medical device, including contraception,” Ayotte said.

The Republican bill shares some policy objectives with the Democratic legislation, introduced by Sens. Patty Murray and Mark Udall last Thursday, which seeks to mandate that employers cannot disrupt coverage for contraception or other health services that are guaranteed under federal law. This bill is up for a vote in the Senate on Wednesday, but Republicans are threatening to block it.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who last week called the Hobby Lobby decision “the worst Supreme Court ruling in 25 years,” criticized the Republican response by again claiming the measure blocks women from getting contraception.

“How long do women have to wait before Republicans will join Democrats, stand up for them?” Reid asked at the news conference. “Women should not be denied health care because Republican men are too afraid to debate the issue on the Senate floor. Women across the country are watching.”

The Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby ruling, issued in late June, laid out a decision focused on contraception and rooted in the rationale that for-profit companies, characterized as people under the law, were protected from providing contraceptive coverage they deemed against their beliefs as protected under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA).

Republican lawmakers said Tuesday that the high court’s decision is rooted in RFRA. The Republican bill, they said, protects freedom of religion and a women’s ability to make contraceptive choices.

“The American people know you can support religious freedom and access to contraception,” McConnell said. “The goal shouldn’t be to protect the freedoms of some while denying the freedoms of others. The goal is to preserve everyone’s freedoms.”

Ayotte pointed out that RFRA, signed by President Clinton, received the support of 16 current senators.

But for the past weeks Democrats, including some who voted for RFRA, have argued that the Supreme Court was misguided in its recent interpretation.

Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., who voted for RFRA in 1993, has been particularly vocal in the wake of the decision.

“I can tell you that was never the intent of the law,” Boxer said in a Huffington Post op-ed. “The Religious Freedom Restoration Act was written to protect an individual’s freedom of religion. But the conservatives on the court turned the law on its head.”

Republican leaders have criticized Democrats for using this issue to sway voters in the midterm elections, but Reid has been firm in his decision that not responding to the court’s “horrible decision” would be “political malpractice.”

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Hillary Clinton Tells Stewart Leaders Face ‘Hard Choices’ on Middle East Crisis

U.S. Department of State(NEW YORK) — Hillary Clinton weighed in on the crisis in Israel and Gaza for the first time Tuesday in an appearance on The Daily Show, a serious moment in an interview that had plenty of laughter as she bantered with the host about her potential presidential bid.

Host Jon Stewart asked the former Secretary of State about the current situation, noting her involvement in the previous 2012 crisis, and asked Clinton, “Can we at least agree the humanitarian crisis in Gaza is overwhelming and the world must do more for the people who are trapped by this conflict?”

“Yes,” she said. “They are trapped by their leadership, unfortunately,” Mrs. Clinton commented. “It’s a two-prong trapping. They have leadership that is committed to resistance and violence and therefore their actions are mostly about, ‘How do we get new and better missiles to launch them at Israel?’ Instead of saying, ‘Hey, let’s try to figure out how we are going to help make your lives better,’” Clinton told Stewart, referring to Hamas.

In a lengthy back-and-forth with Stewart she said Israel is “absolutely right” that it has to defend itself from Hamas rocket attacks, but expressed sympathy for the people of Gaza who she said are “trapped.”

“They are trapped first and foremost by leadership that doesn’t really want to make the situation too much better because that gives them a lot of leverage over the poor people in Gaza,” she said, noting the current crisis is a “terrible dilemma.”

“Unless we can give people enough of a sense of security on both sides that they will be better off and their children are going to be better off, then the guys with the guns can always disrupt anything,” Clinton said.

“There are extremists on all sides and people with guns on all sides so leadership has to be very tough minded and very strong to make the hard choices,” Clinton said, plugging the name of her memoir, a reference that Stewart immediately jumped on: “What? You did not do that? Wow.”

The audience, as well as Clinton, burst into laughter.

Stewart opened up the show, before the interview, telling his audience Clinton would “publicly and “definitively” declare her candidacy, which drew huge applause from the crowd.

Almost immediately the 2016 talk started, even as Clinton began to discuss her memoir, the sales of which have reportedly been poor.

“I think I speak for everybody when I say nobody cares, they just want to know if you are running for president,” Stewart deadpanned.

Clinton, wearing a black pant suit with gray polka dots, played along, telling Stewart she “was going to make an announcement,” but his opener “spoiled it for me,” adding “I think I’ll just reconsider where I go do it.”

Stewart said he “sensed confusion” from Clinton and told her he would give her a “career aptitude test,” telling her it will help “hone in” on whether she even wants to be president.

The first question was whether Clinton likes “commuting to work” or if she prefers a “home office.”

“I spent so many years commuting, I kind of prefer a home office,” she quipped.

Stewart then asked if she has a “favorite shape” for that home office, asking if she would prefer it to have “corners or not to have corners?”

She answered since “the world is so complicated” she would prefer “fewer corners,” to loud applause from the audience.

Stewart ended the bit by saying it sounded to him like she “declared for president.”

The appearance was the third for Clinton on the show and Stewart noted the massive amount of press attention she gets, asking if she thinks it will stop if she decides against running. She answered, “I think a lot of people would lose their jobs if it stopped.”

“I’ve been amazed at what a cottage industry it has become,” Clinton answered, referring to not only press attention, but also books that have been written about her, including Ed Klein‘s Blood Feud, which has tantalized readers with insider stories about a reported feud between the Clintons and the Obamas.

The Daily Show interview will air at 11 p.m. ET Tuesday.

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House Passes $11 Billion Highway Bill in Bipartisan Vote

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Behind a slight majority of Democratic votes, the GOP-controlled House of Representatives voted late Tuesday afternoon to approve a $10.8 billion short-term extension of the Highway Trust Fund.

The measure benefitting the nation’s construction workers passed 367-55, with 186 Democrats joining 181 Republicans on the vote.

The legislation, known formally as Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2014, was opposed by many conservatives, with both the Club For Growth and Heritage Action pressing lawmakers to oppose the vote. Forty-five of the House Republican Conference’s most conservative members opposed the vote, while 10 Democrats also voted against it.

Some critics complained that the cost of the measure, which would provide enough funding to last until the end of next May, would be offset through budget gimmicks by smoothing federal pension plans over the next decade.

But House Speaker John Boehner rejected critics, pointing to bipartisan support from the White House and both chambers of Congress.

“It means that corporations will have a longer period of time to meet their pension obligations, which means they’ll have less deductions, which means that we’ll pay higher corporate income taxes. It’s very simple,” Boehner, R-Ohio, told reporters Tuesday. “These are difficult decisions in difficult times, in an election year, but it’s important that we find a solution.”

“With surface transportation funding running out and hundreds of thousands of jobs at risk later this summer, the Administration supports House passage of H.R. 5021,” the statement read. “This legislation would provide for continuity of funding for the Highway Trust Fund during the height of the summer construction season and keep Americans at work repairing the Nation’s crumbling roads, bridges, and transit systems.”

Given that support, its passage in the Senate is likely. A similar measure was approved by a Senate committee last week, but it has not been voted on in the full Senate.

“As soon as I can get to it, I’m going to try to set up a procedure where we have the Senate Finance Committee bill, we’ll have a vote on that,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. said, adding that Democrats could amend the House’s bill to limit funding to $8 billion. “I’m going to try to put all that together and have a few votes and hopefully get that out of here before the August recess.”

Current funding is expected to run out at the end of the month without congressional action.

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