A resignation, renewed "national emergencies", help for a (very) few veterans, screwing over of VA employees and Native Americans, favors for drug companies, changes to Amtrak, a veto threat and more are highlighted from a relatively calm March in Congress. In the second half of this episode, Jen discusses her plan to keep producing Congressional Dish full time, extends an invitation to hang out, reads some of your letters, and answers your questions.
Time sensitive episode! Congress is rushing to pass a bill that would grant the President Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), which hands Congress' power to negotiate international treaties to the Executive Branch. In this episode, we look at the details of the Trade Promotion Authority bill. Is giving the Executive Branch this power a good idea?
In this special episode, we prepare for the Senate's upcoming push to fast-track multiple "free trade" agreements, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). We also look into the January 2015 draft text of the leaked TPP Investment Chapter.
A summary of all the bills that passed at least one branch of Congress in February, including six bills destined for a veto and one new law.
In this episode, learn about our global war strategy for the 114th Congress through highlights of two Senate Armed Services Committee hearings. Witnesses include former Secretaries of State Henry Kissinger, Madeline Albright, and George Shultz and retired military leaders General James Mattis, General Jack Keane, and Admiral William Fallon.
On February 27, 2015 the Department of Homeland Security came within hours of shutting down. In this episode, get the full story, from start to finish, of this unnecessary funding crisis.
In this special episode, catch up on all the drama that surrounded the near shutdown of the Department of Homeland Security. First, sit on the couch with Jen and Matt as they watch the first plan to avert a shutdown go down in flames, then sit in on a conversation between Jen and her step-brother Mike, a member of the Coast Guard who may have to work for free if the DHS is shut down next week.
A summary of January, the first month of the 114th Congress. In this episode, a favor for Wall Street is signed into law, the Senate did almost nothing, and the House passed bills that benefit Wall Street, fossil fuel companies, and companies that don't want to give you health insurance. There were a few good bills mixed in there too.
Excellent question by @theIanMcNeny:
— Ian McNeny (@theIanMcNeny) February 4, 2015
Thank you for asking!
Here's five episodes I highly recommend and why:
This episode is a summary of everything that happened during the 113th Congress (the 114th Congress began in January 2015). During the 113th Congress, Congressional Dish focused on the House of Representatives, which was controlled by the Republican Party at the time. Now, the Republican Party controls the entire Congress for the 114th Congress. This episode will give you an idea of how they will govern for the next two years.
This is one piece of legislation that did not die with the 113th Congress. The Trans-Pacific Partnership is huge new package of international laws that is being created right now with eleven other countries. It’s the one thing that President Obama and the Republicans who now control all of Congress agree on. You should know about this.
"Free Market" is a term used often in Congress. It refers to two things: Economic theories that have been tested in countries around the world during the last 60 years and it's a label that is often applied to economic laws that don't follow those theories but rig the laws to benefit multi-national corporations. This episode, one of the first Congressional Dish episodes, explores the results of how the economic theories and label "free market" have been used around the world.
In 2013, the President of the United States went on television and announced to the world that he planned to bomb Syria. A year and half later, the United States is bombing Syria regularly. In this episode, we fact check a list posted on Twitter by a Syrian after the President's announcement which contained twelve things the Syrian wanted us to know about her country. There were some true things on her list that we all should know.
In early 2014, our government began giving Ukraine billions of our tax money in the forms of cash, military equipment, and military "trainers". This continues in the 114th Congress. This episode provides some information about how and why we got involved in Ukraine. This is a likely real time example adding to the pattern you'll learn about in CD003.
Thank you for listening to Congressional Dish! Please let us know what you think.
In this episode, we look at the riders added to the must-sign 2015 budget, including favors for Wall Street, unions, agribusiness, the oil and gas industry, electric utilities, the vending machine industry, telecoms, the trucking industry, the insurance industry, and the politicians themselves.