May 8, 2015

Next Week: House Considers Waters of the U.S. and National Security Bills

Resisting the Regulatory Regime by Stopping the EPA Water Rule

Ronald Reagan once said that government approaches the economy by a simple principle: “If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.” It seems Washington is running out of moving things to regulate, so it’s starting to bring bureaucracy to a new frontier.

Last year, the EPA proposed a rule that is so vague and so broad that it can designate almost any water—moving or not—as under federal jurisdiction by designating it a “navigable waterway.” That means the EPA’s regulatory regime will have even greater authority to trample on private property rights and hold back our economy.

The House will not stand for it. Next week, we will pass the Regulatory Integrity Protection Act, which will require the EPA to withdraw their proposed rule. If the EPA wants to revise the rule, it will have to consider input from state and local representatives as well as the private sector in an open and transparent process.

 

Fiscal Year 2015 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA)

The fundamental responsibility of government is to protect citizens. In order to fulfill our constitutional duty to “provide for the common defense,” the House will bring to the floor three critical measures next week.

After a marathon markup last week, the House Armed Services Committee passed the NDAA by an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote of 60 to 2.

As Majority Leader McCarthy said in a memo last week,

This year’s NDAA advances the vital funding and authorities that America’s military requires to act as a global leader and protect our national security interests. It ensures that our armed forces can meet the challenges they face from an aggressive Russia and an expansionist Iran to terrorist threats in the Middle East and beyond.

The NDAA also cuts needless waste by instituting reforms to the Department of Defense’s costly acquisitions process by:

  • Streamlining the processes and reducing the number of legal certifications needed for acquisitions
  • Empowering the workforce to allow our best military talent to serve in acquisition roles and increases training on markets
  • Simplifying the chain of command to cut down on the multiple layers of bureaucracy

 

The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015

While Presidents have a wide latitude to conduct foreign policy, no large-scale agreement like the one being negotiated with Iran should be instituted without Congressional approval. This bill assures that the American people have their rightful say through their representatives in reviewing any agreement on Iran’s nuclear program.

As Leader McCarthy said after the President released a framework for a deal with Iran,

It is hard to see how any agreement that allows Iran to keep operating an industrial-scale centrifuge program with thousands of centrifuges, allows Iran to continue conducting advanced research and development into more efficient centrifuges, or fails to require immediate, snap inspections and access to Iran’s nuclear scientists can be said to‘cut off every pathway that Iran could take to develop a nuclear weapon,’ as the President stated. Whatever the ultimate outcome of the nuclear negotiations, the United States and its international partners must confront Iranian aggression throughout the Middle East from Yemen to Gaza.

 

The USA Freedom Act

In a free country, there is always a delicate balance between privacy and security that must be maintained. This bill ensures that the U.S. Intelligence community has the necessary tools it needs to protect our homeland from an array of terrorist threats, while also increasing transparency and civil liberty protections for Americans.

With these three bills, the House will take active steps to make sure our military has the capabilities it needs to win, that the people have a say over the nuclear negotiations with Iran, and we can continue to protect both our homeland and the liberties we hold most dear.