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  • Backgrounder posted September 6, 2016 by James Wallner, Paul Winfree The Implications of Regular Lame-Duck Sessions in Congress for Representative Government

    Barring exceptional circumstances or strict exigency, Congress should not consider any major legislation or presidential nominations during a so-called lame-duck session—that is, between each November election and January 3, when a new Congress forms. Doing so undermines representative government by weakening the accountability link between the American people and their…

  • Lecture posted September 1, 2016 by Mike Lee Recovering the Senate’s Rightful Role in Foreign Affairs

    I’m honored to be here today to talk about the new climate-change deal President Obama is pursuing, the dangers it poses to the American energy sector and to U.S. sovereignty, and what Congress can and should do about it. Conference of Parties In a few weeks Paris will host the latest round of climate-change negotiations—what’s called the “Conference of Parties”—under…

  • Issue Brief posted June 8, 2016 by Justin Bogie Congress Should Look Toward Legislative Branch Appropriations Bill as a Starting Point for Spending Cuts

    This week, the House of Representatives will consider the annual legislative branch appropriations bill, the third of 12 appropriations bills providing discretionary funding for the federal government. This bill provides funding for: Congress; the U.S. Capitol Police (USCP); the Government Publishing Office (GPO); the Government Accountability Office…

  • Market Research posted November 23, 2015 by Mark Schreiber, Elizabeth Fender Two-Thirds Say Lawmakers Should Follow Through on Promises

    Source: Online survey using a national representative sample of 879 U.S. voters conducted November 13, 2015 with a margin of error of ±3.3%. American Perceptions Initiative is a project of The Heritage Foundation’s communications team.…

  • Market Research posted November 23, 2015 by Mark Schreiber, Elizabeth Fender Majority Expect and Want Congress to Not Increase Spending

    Source: Online survey using a national representative sample of 879 U.S. voters conducted November 13, 2015 with a margin of error of ±3.3%. American Perceptions Initiative is a project of The Heritage Foundation’s communications team.…

  • Issue Brief posted May 27, 2015 by John Gray House Legislative Branch Appropriations Bill Freezes Pay for Members of Congress but Avoids Further Spending Cuts

    Next week, the House of Representatives is expected to consider the legislative branch appropriations bill, the third of 12 appropriations bills providing discretionary funding for the federal government. The legislative branch appropriations bill provides general funding for the overall operation of Congress, including the U.S. Capitol Police (USCP); the Government…

  • Legal Memorandum posted July 24, 2014 by John Malcolm, Elizabeth Slattery Boehner v. Obama: Can the House of Representatives Force the President to Comply with the Law?

    A‌rticle I of the Constitution vests “All legislative powers herein ‌granted” in Congress, while Article II, section 3 requires that the President “shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.” But what happens when the President fails to execute the law? Time and again, President Barack Obama has pushed the limits of this duty, acting unilaterally to change or…

  • Commentary posted July 1, 2014 by Stephen Moore The Underappreciated Eric Cantor

    Eric Cantor must have woken up this morning feeling like the Rodney Dangerfield of American politics: I get no respect. In the aftermath of his stunning loss, Mr. Cantor has been attacked from all sides by political Monday-morning quarterbacks — for supposed arrogance, for ignoring his constituents, for being too moderate, too pro-business, not free-market enough, weak…

  • Commentary posted April 17, 2014 by Stephen Moore Who Shrank the Deficit?

    A budget deficit of nearly half a trillion dollars is hardly something to cheer about, but the big decline in federal red ink as a share of our national output has been a stunning achievement. The new April budget update from the Congressional Budget Office tells us that, in 2009, Barack Obama and the Democrats rang up an elephantine $1.3 trillion deficit, which amounted…

  • Commentary posted January 5, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. On immigration, start with what's doable to avoid lasting bitterness

    "Solutions to problems cannot be found in a pool of bitterness.” So proclaimed John Dennis "Denny" Hastert upon his swearing in as the 59th Speaker of the House of Representatives in 1999. Hastert was pledging to look for bipartisan solutions, but it had special meaning for rank-and-file Republicans in the House. As a means of avoiding ruinous bitterness, Hastert vowed…

  • Issue Brief posted April 16, 2013 by David S. Addington House Cybersecurity Legislation: A Small Step, but Flaws Need Correction

    Congress has begun to consider cybersecurity legislation in earnest for the 113th Congress. The House of Representatives is scheduled to consider shortly H.R. 624, the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA). The bill addresses the growing problem of foreign powers infiltrating U.S. public and private computer systems to steal valuable information. The bill…

  • Issue Brief posted December 18, 2012 by Michaela Dodge National Security and Defense: Comparing Congress and The Heritage Foundation's Policy Positions

    To provide for the common defense is one of the primary constitutional responsibilities of the federal government. The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is a federal law that annually specifies the budget and expenditures of the Department of Defense (DOD). In addition to funding, this law can also be a vehicle for good and bad policies. Therefore, lawmakers abuse…

  • Issue Brief posted September 13, 2012 by Paul Rosenzweig Congress Should Not Enable Executive Orders on Cybersecurity

    The discussion over improving U.S. cybersecurity has moved from a debate over different pieces of legislation to speculation and expectation that President Obama will issue an executive order. Congress repeatedly declined to adopt a regulatory approach to cybersecurity, yet the Administration has drafted an executive order that begins the development of a regulatory…

  • Issue Brief posted July 25, 2012 by James L. Gattuso Reforming Regulation: Some Sensible Steps

    Like the weather, regulation is something that everyone likes to complain about, but nobody does anything about it. However, the House of Representatives this week plans to take up over half a dozen measures to reduce red tape. This comes in addition to last year’s passage of measures to require congressional approval of new major regulations (the REINS Act[1]) and to…

  • WebMemo posted December 8, 2011 by Patrick Louis Knudsen Chairman Ryan’s Proposals for Fixing the Budget Process

    To say “the budget process is broken,” as many Members of Congress like to complain, is a little misleading. The regular order of the budget process has not been employed for the past several years[1]—and mostly because of Congress’s inability or unwillingness to use it. But if not broken, the process has indeed broken down, as demonstrated by the Senate’s failure to pass…