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House budget leaves out Senate spending cuts


After significant debate Wednesday, the Senate voted 18-13 to raise the state sales tax from 6 percent to 7.25 percent, then cut all income-tax rates next year with a goal of eventually ending them. Mitch McConnell in front of the West Wing of the White House on February 27 in Washington. (It's true, Thursday does come after Wednesday.) Louisiana Sen.

While the analysis of the House-passed plan simply gives senators a numerical starting point for their own work, it also made the Republican health care drive a fatter target for Democratic attacks. The Senate sent House Bill 2429 to the governor Thursday afternoon. They must pass a health care bill before the end of the fiscal year on September 30. Larry Taylor, R-Friendswood, the bill's sponsor, made some compromises to appease educators but did not include several of the provisions they want the most - including a delay to the start date of the rating system from 2018 to 2019 and a limit on how much of their grades depend on standardized tests. "It is another positive step toward keeping our promise to repeal and replace Obamacare", said House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis. It showed that the MacArthur amendment-which clinched the Freedom Caucus' approval of the bill-would erode insurance protections in waiver states for patients with pre-existing conditions and that the Upton amendment-which clinched enough moderate support to get the bill over the finish line-would provide not almost enough money as a backup for those priced out of insurance markets. Those changes, he says, would make premiums affordable enough that younger people would stay in the pool while providing older people enough money to keep plans economical. The Upton amendment's $8 billion in funds for five years-slotted in for waiver states to protect their sicker populations-"would not be sufficient to substantially reduce the large increases in premiums for high-cost enrollees", the CBO found.

Senator Charles Trump, R-Morgan, agreed with that assessment and said the Senate's Republican leadership should take the opportunity to make its best argument in favor of the bill. Taylor changed the bill to include a fourth category, measuring how well schools are doing in closing achievement gaps between students of different racial and socioeconomic groups.

They've said it will differ markedly from the House measure, including easing some Medicaid reductions and focusing tax credits for buying coverage more at poorer people.

But Huberty, who has a son with special needs, says it's about standing up for all of Texas' 5.3 million public school kids and coming up with a funding solution to a school finance system that's been deemed "broken". So might those with pre-existing conditions. "I think it helps the Medicaid states", McCain said.

Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch was one of the few senators who would admit that the CBO score caused "a lot of concern" among Republicans.

NDP back in the lead in Courtenay-Comox riding, counting continues
If the Liberals won the riding, they would have the 44 seats needed for a majority government, barring any other riding changes. Elections BC is due to have the entire final count complete by May 24, however that doesn't mean the results are certain yet.

No plan, except House Bill 2178, has found the right mix of support. The bill is disappointing, perhaps devastating, to many with medical and financial issues.

"That's gonna be the argument", he said. The "pot and kettle" analogy comes to mind here. Why was such deference given to the insurance industry rather than the American public?

Friday is the House's last day to pass bills that originated in the House but were modified by amendments placed on them while being voted out of the Senate - likely meaning a long day. So the House approved pumping $1.6 billion additional dollars into it but that plan came out of the Senate reduced to $530 million.

Senate Republicans have been holding closed-door meetings to try writing their own health care overhaul. Ron Johnson told reporters Thursday.

"People want to go farther and some don't want to go that far". The two sponsored House Bill 81, which would lower penalties for possession of one ounce of marijuana from arrests to mere tickets.

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