(CNN) - After a relatively slow startup in January (yes, we know Republicans passed new House rules and imposed spending cuts on themselves, but we said “relatively slow”), things are heating up at the Capitol.
Here’s the American Sauce cheat sheet on three things to watch in the next day: 1. The Spending Battle, 2. Patriot Act Extension and 3. The State of The U.S. Economy.
1. SPENDING BATTLE
Where To Watch: House floor, House Budget Committee website, House Appropriations website.
Who To Watch: House Budget Chair Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, and House Appropriations Chair Harold Rodgers, R-Kentucky.
When To Watch: Ryan action expected in the next day. Appropriations meets at 4 p.m. EST today to organize and start work on the issue. Debate set for the House floor next week.
What To Watch: Ryan plans to set spending limits for the rest of the year by putting his proposal into the Congressional Record. This is a hyper-speed version of the budget process, following a year where House Democrats produced no budget at all. Ryan’s proposal would cut $35 billion off current spending for the rest of the fiscal year.
Rodgers and his committee will turn Ryan’s plan into a legislative bill, teeing up for debate and a vote next week.
2. PATRIOT ACT EXTENSION
Where To Watch: House floor.
When To Watch: This afternoon and evening.
Who To Watch: House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Virginia, who announced the bill’s timing, and Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Wisconsin, who sponsored it.
What To Watch: House Republicans hope to pass a short-term extension of three central provisions of the Patriot Act. Here’s the summary and text of the bill. Specifically, the bill would extend the roving wiretaps, library searches and “lone wolf” provisions which otherwise will expire Feb. 28.
3. THE STATE OF THE U.S. ECONOMY
Where To Watch: House Budget Committee. See their website to watch the hearings live.
When To Watch: Wednesday 10a Eastern and Thursday 10a Eastern.
Who To Watch: Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke (Weds.) and Congressional Budget Office Director Doug Elmendorf (Thurs.)
What To Watch: How the two critical voices on the economy and government spending handle sharp and extensive questions from members of Congress. What course of action their statements will endorse or discourage. Be prepared, especially from Elmendorf, to hear sobering statistics.
Be Ahead of The Game: Read the CBO’s recent predictions for the federal deficit and budget here.
You know what? I have a bone to pick with Speaker Boehner. They campaigned on budgets and deficits and jobs. Now it looks like, as far as jobs go, screw us and they are doing theirs by working two weeks and taking a week's recess. Not kidding here. And what is this obsession with women's private parts and what they do with them in private? Anyone else getting creeped out by this Republican fascination, or is it just me?
We are now into the 2nd month of 2011. Would it be too much to ask that Congress complete and sign off on the 2010 budget before they begin debating the 2011 budget? Perhaps if Boehner hadn't agreed to a 2 week on 1 week off agenda, more could get done. Then again, probably doesn't really matter, this group of GOPers aren't all that inclined to complete much of anything . . . too busy rehashing old legislation and too timid to introduce new legislation . . . beyond controlling female reproductive organs that is. Quite the economic booster, that.
Trying to clean up the massive financial mess created by the Democrats with their out of control spending and borrowing will be a monumental task. If they can't figure out what to cut then they need to cut EVERYTHING by 5-7% PER YEAR until this financial train wreck is under control.
If they want to raise taxes, then I suggest they start with the 50% of the people in the USA that pay no federal income taxes. The Democrats and their class warfare tactics need to stop. They are destroying and dividing the country.
What's to watch? We know where those will end up.
I didn't see anything about JOBS I thought Republicans were going to make us some JOBS.