Your Inside View to the Strategies and Activities of the Conservative Movement in Washington
Issue 127 * May 6, 1996
The National Center for Public Policy Research
Amy Moritz, President
300 Eye Street N.E. Suite 3 * Washington, D.C. 20002
(202) 543-4110 * Fax (202) 543-5975
E-Mail: [email protected]
Activities at the April 24 and May 1 Wednesday Strategy Lunches chaired by House Majority Whip Tom DeLay, Rep. Ernest Istook (R-OK), and Paul Weyrich of the Free Congress Foundation.
Rep. Jay Dickey (R-AR) reviewed the ongoing Whitewater trial in Arkansas and two pieces of legislation he is promoting: 1) a bill to make the expenditures of independent prosecutors subject to the appropriations process after two years, and 2) legislation, nicknamed the "Rosty Bill," which forbids Members of Congress from collecting a pension if they are convicted of a felony while in office. Contact Rep. Dickey at 202/225-3772.
House Majority Whip Tom DeLay (R-TX), Rep. Jay Dickey (R-AR), Rep. Ernest Istook (R-OK), Paul Weyrich of the Free Congress Foundation, Marshall Whittman of the Heritage Foundation led discussions about the proposed minimum wage increase, discussing events on the Hill and GOP efforts to increase the take-home pay of working poor by, among other things:
Rep. Istook explained how a minimum wage increase disproportionately kills jobs in states where living costs are lower. Rep. Dickey said passage of a minimum wage increase would be a "betrayal." Marshall Whittman announced the release of a new Heritage study detailing the number of jobs lost by the Clinton tax increase. Contact Paul Weyrich at 202/546-3000, Rep. DeLay via April Lassiter at 202/225-0197, Rep. Dickey at 202/225-3772, Rep. Istook at 202/225-2132, Marshall Whittman at 202/546-4400.
Rep. Mark Neumann (R-WI) enthusiastically discussed positive aspects of the recent budget agreement, saying, in part: "We not only hit [the deficit reduction target], folks, we exceeded it, for heaven's sakes... We have won. We are successfully moving toward balancing the federal budget by reducing spending and not by reducing taxes on the American people. It's time we started cheering about some of the great things that are going on in America today." Neumann showed a "We Are Winning" chart, among others, and offered copies to anyone upon request. Contact Rep. Neumann at 202/225-3031.
Ed Corrigan of Senator Bob Smith (R-NH)'s office discussed S. 1589, Senator Slade Gorton's regional primary bill, which Smith opposes. S. 1589 bans caucuses and state nominating conventions, allows the Federal Election Commission to determine who is a "seriously considered candidate" for ballot-access purposes, and divides the country into four regions, to hold successive monthly primaries, among other provisions. Smith considers the bill to be unconstitutional, a federal government power grab, anti-grassroots and anti-small state, among other objections. In a past Congress, 22 Republican senators signed a letter against a very similar bill. Senator Smith is asking Senators to sign a second letter of opposition. Early signers include Senators Judd Gregg (R-NH), Phil Gramm (R-TX), Dan Coats (R-IN) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA). Contact Ed Corrigan at 202/224-2841.
Ken Boehm and John Carlisle of the National Legal and Policy Center discussed the budget cut (from $400 to $278 million) imposed on the Legal Services Corporation (LSC) by the recent budget agreement and discussed upcoming activity related to the LSC. The LSC has been funded by the federal government for sixteen years since its authorization to exist expired in 1980. Boehm complimented legislation by Rep. John Kasich (R-OH) to further cut the LSC budget but was especially enthusiastic about the fact that, he said, House Rules Committee Chairman Gerald Solomon has decided to allow a "point of order" vote on the issue of the LSC's expired authorization. Carlisle distributed information about LSC program abuses. Contact Ken Boehm and John Carlisle at 703/847-3088.
A bill sponsored by Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) and Senator Paul Simon (D-IL) to establish a national gambling study commission, which passed the House unanimously, has unexpectedly been torpedoed by Senator Richard Bryan (D-NV) and an assortment of lobbyists, including former RNC Chairman Frank Fahrenkopf and former Reagan advisor Ken Duberstein. Legalized gambling generates six times the revenue of all U.S. spectator sports combined, bringing in $40 billion per year. Rep. Wolf says Senate amendments to the Wolf-Simon bill, which would keep the study commission from convening investigative hearings or having subpoena power, are "a disgrace." Contact William Moschella of Rep. Wolf's office at 202/225-5136.
In defense of Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-SC), Project 21 Chairman Edmund Peterson has responded angrily to Reps. William Clay (D-MO) and Louis Stokes (D-OH) who refused to be honored with Mr. Thurmond at a luncheon held by the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education. Senator Thurmond was to be honored for his fundraising efforts on behalf of historically-black colleges and universities, but the event was canceled because the other two honorees refused to accept their awards with Sen. Thurmond. "The refusal of these Congressmen to forgive Sen. Thurmond [who ran for president 50 years ago on a segregationist platform] shows that it is their hearts that are poisoned, not his. If this country is ever to racially heal, then these kinds of resentful, bitter attacks must stop. Strom Thurmond has eliminated his racism of a half-century ago... it's time for these Congressmen to consider changing their attitude toward him." Contact Arturo Silva at 202/543-4110 or by e-mail at [email protected]
Saying that "All agree that the current Superfund program is not doing its job," Rep. William Clinger (R-PA) and David McIntosh (R-IN) have announced hearings in the Government Reform and Oversight Committee on National Economic Growth, Natural Resources and Regulatory Affairs on the reforming the Superfund program for the sake of the environment. After 16 years and an expenditure of $15 billion by the EPA, fewer than 100 of 1,600 Superfund sites have been cleaned up. The hearings will be held May 8. Contact Larisa Dobriansky or Karen Barnes at 202/225-4407.
The House Republican Conference has just released a paper analyzing the AFL-CIO's just released vote ratings. The AFL-CIO selected opposition to the balanced budget amendment, opposition to the $500 per child tax credit, opposition to analyzing the cost-effectiveness of regulations, and opposition to allowing management and workers to form voluntary workplace safety and productivity groups, among other issues, as its key ranked votes for 1995. For copies contact the House Republican Conference Committee at 202/225-3121.
Scoop is published by The National Center for Public Policy Research to provide information about the activities of the conservative movement. Coverage of a meeting or statement in Scoop does not imply endorsement by The National Center for Public Policy Research. (C)1996 The National Center for Public Policy Research. ###
©1996 The National Center for Public Policy Research.