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When the House of Representatives voted this evening on legislation to increase the limit on the federal debt by as much as $2.4 trillion, House Republicans broke a promise included in their 2010 Pledge to America to post the text of bills online “for at least three days” before bringing them up for a vote.
“We will ensure that bills are debated and discussed in the public square by publishing the text online for at least three days before coming up for a vote in the House of Representatives,” said the Pledge to America. “No more hiding legislative language from the minority party, opponents, and the public. Legislation should be understood by all interested parties before it is voted on.”
Curiously, a summary of how the Republican Congress has fulfilled the Pledge that is included on the House Republican Conference’s Web site qualifies the language of the promise to post legislation online three days before voting on it. This summary headlines the Pledge’s section on the three-day rule: “A Three Day Waiting Period on all Non-Emergency Legislation.”
The words “non-emergency” or “emergency” do not appear anywhere in the text of the original Pledge for America as published by the House Republicans, and as still available in full-text form on the Republican Conference’s Web site.
However, it might be problematic for House Republicans to call the debt-limit bill a piece of “emergency” legislation. The House has been aiming to pass debt-limit legislation by an Aug. 2 deadline ever since May 16, when Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said the Treasury had bumped up against the statutory debt limit and that the accounting measures legally available to the Treasury in such a situation could keep the debt below that limit only until Aug. 2.
The House Republican Conference did not immediately respond to an inquiry from CNSNews.com about the origin of the language on the conference’s website that says the three-day pledge applies to “non-emergency legislation.”
SEC. 501. FEDERAL PELL GRANTS.
Section 401(b)(7)(A)(iv) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1070a(b)(7)(A)(iv)) is amended--
(1) in subclause (II), by striking `$3,183,000,000' and inserting `$13,183,000,000'; and
(2) in subclause (III), by striking `$0' and inserting `$7,000,000,000'.
SEC. 502. TERMINATION OF AUTHORITY TO MAKE INTEREST SUBSIDIZED LOANS TO GRADUATE AND PROFESSIONAL STUDENTS.
Section 455(a) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1087e(a)) is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:
`(3) TERMINATION OF AUTHORITY TO MAKE INTEREST SUBSIDIZED LOANS TO GRADUATE AND PROFESSIONAL STUDENTS-
`(A) IN GENERAL- Subject to subparagraph (B) and notwithstanding any provision of this part or part B, for any period of instruction beginning on or after July 1, 2012--
`(i) a graduate or professional student shall not be eligible to receive a Federal Direct Stafford loan under this part; and
`(ii) the maximum annual amount of Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford loans such a student may borrow in any academic year (as defined in section 481(a)(2)) or its equivalent shall be the maximum annual amount for such student determined under section 428H, plus an amount equal to the amount of Federal Direct Stafford loans the student would have received in the absence of this subparagraph.
`(B) EXCEPTION- Subparagraph (A) shall not apply to an individual enrolled in course work specified in paragraph (3)(B) or (4)(B) of section 484(b).'.
Obama drops education benefits in 2012 and the Pell Grant is cancelled by 2015. Projected Pell Grants budget zero from 2015 – 2021 Other education expenses are cut starting in 2012. Does the Obama administration mislead its public in regards to future education programs and Pell Grant cuts?
Pell Grants. The bill would directly appropriate $9.0 billion for fiscal year 2012 and
$8.0 billion for fiscal year 2013 for Pell grants. Those funds would be used to supplement
funding for the portion of the Pell Grant program that is funded through annual
discretionary appropriations. CBO estimates that this provision would increase direct
spending by $17.0 billion over the 2012-2015 period (with no impact on outlays after