After running against inflation for the 2022 midterms, Republicans’ priorities for the first few weeks do not include anything to reduce inflation.
Naturally, this agenda was hyped by House Republican Whip Steve Scalise as being “ready to hit the ground running to do what we promised on the border, crime, energy, inflation, Life, taxpayer protection & more.”
Here are their plans, in their own language, which includes falsehoods like “87,000 new IRS agents”:
These commonsense measures will address challenges facing hard-working families on issues ranging from energy, inflation, border security, life, taxpayer protection, and more. They should garner wide support and provide an indication of our bold agenda to come. I’m excited to announce the following legislation we plan to bring to the House Floor in the first two weeks of 2023:
H.R. __ – Family and Small Business Taxpayer Protection Act
• This bill rescinds tens of billions of dollars allocated to the IRS for 87,000 new IRS agents in the Inflation Reduction Act
H. Res. __ – Establishing the Select Committee on the Strategic Competition Between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party
• This resolution establishes a bipartisan Select Committee on the Strategic Competition Between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party
H.R. __ – Strategic Production Response Act
• This bill prohibits non-emergency drawdowns of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve without a plan to increase energy production on federal lands
H.R. __ – Protecting America’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve from China Act
• This bill prohibits the Secretary of Energy from sending petroleum products from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to China
H.R. __ – Prosecutors Need to Prosecute Act
• This bill creates transparency in our criminal justice system by letting the public know how many cases prosecutors are declining to prosecute, the number of offenses committed by career criminals, and the number of criminals released
H. Con. Res. __ – Expressing support for the Nation’s law enforcement agencies and condemning any efforts to defund or dismantle law enforcement agencies
• This resolution expresses the sincere gratitude and appreciation of Congress to the Nation’s law enforcement officers who protect and serve our communities and rejects the misguided and dangerous efforts to defund and dismantle the Nation’s law enforcement agencies
H.R. __ – Border Safety and Security Act
• This bill addresses our crisis at the southern border by empowering the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to turn away illegal migrants at the border if the Secretary of DHS does not have operational control
H.R. __ – Illegal Alien NICS Alert Act
• This bill requires the National Instant Criminal Background Check system (NICS) to notify U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and relevant local law enforcement when a firearm transferee is illegally present in the United States
H.R. __ – No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act
• This bill makes permanent the long-standing Hyde Amendment as well as similar provisions to prohibit federal funding for abortion and funding for any insurance plan that includes abortion on demand
H. Con. Res. __ – Expressing the sense of Congress condemning the recent attacks on pro-life facilities, groups, and churches
• This resolution expresses the sense of Congress condemning the recent attacks on pro-life facilities, groups, and churches
H.R. __ – Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act
• This bill ensures that infants born alive after an abortion receive the same protection of law and degree of care as any newborn
In addition to this “ready-to-go” legislation I expect us to consider early in the 118th Congress, committees are simultaneously beginning their oversight plans which are focused on bringing much-needed accountability to the Biden Administration.
No one has the time to fact-check every single falsehood in their agenda, but the 87,000 IRS agent lie is so old it’s been fact-checked repeatedly, including before the midterms and of course during, and now here we are post-midterms, and the lie is still being repeated.
The reason the lie is being repeated is Republicans don’t want to admit that what was funded was an IRS that could go after wealthy tax dodgers, so they pretend they are protecting the little people, who in point of fact pay the taxes that Republicans protect the rich from paying (see their tax cuts for the mostly wealthy).
The New York Times had a rather weary sounding fact-check of this oft-repeated lie that Republicans won’t let go of:
That law provides the Internal Revenue Service with nearly $80 billion in funding, including $45.6 billion for enforcement activities. But the suggestion that this would amount to 87,000 additional tax collectors scrutinizing the financial filings of middle-class Americans is wrong.
The 87,000 figure refers to a May 2021 estimate from the Treasury Department of the total number of employees — not just auditors — the I.R.S. proposes to hire over the next 10 years with funding requested by Mr. Biden. And while the I.R.S. plans to conduct more audits, wealthy Americans and businesses will bear the brunt of that scrutiny, not, as Republicans have suggested, working families.
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The rest of the nonsense is culture war stuff (for real culture war, have a look at this piece about Steve Scalise and his white nationalist scandal from 2014) that is meant to throw red meat to their base, whom Republicans know will never ask why Republicans aren’t doing one single thing to cut inflation or gas price gouging now that they have the power to do so. Of course, Republicans voted against such measures when Democrats brought them up.
In fact, we can hardly forget that in June of 2021, Chris Wallace called out House Republicans for voting unanimously to defund the police. Perhaps this is why they now feel it necessary to once again express care and claim to protect law enforcement from defunding, while voting the opposite: “Expressing support for the Nation’s law enforcement agencies and condemning any efforts to defund or dismantle law enforcement agencies.”
As for their care about the unborn, the unborn are the only constituency that can be counted upon to never ask where the check is, so it is a perfect fit for this modern day Republican Party.
Unlike the police and the rural poor, people who don’t exist can’t ask questions or make demands. This is precisely why people who don’t exist are literally the most precious people ever to Republicans, and why it makes sense that Republicans don’t care about women and girls or Black or Brown people or gay people or poor people or poor children or hungry children, but they are brought to tears by non-existent people. Non-existent people are the best constituents when you’re running the equivalent of Trump University for Congress.
Indeed, “The total number of the House Republican priority bills ticketed for floor consideration in the first 2 weeks that will affect inflation in even a small way is zero (0),” Aaron Fritschner Deputy Chief of Staff to Rep. Don Beyer pointed out. To which a poster replied, “Well, arguably, the bills related to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve will slightly increase inflation.”
We live in post-fact times, and there is nothing that will bring the Republican Party back to Earth after their embrace of Trumpism, now solidified in their backing of George “Jew-ish” Santos.
Why did Republicans caterwaul about inflation throughout 2022? Because like all backseat drivers, they take delight in pointing out what’s not working. They have no intention of working to fix those problems. The people’s problems are “big government”; i.e., to fix the People’s problems would cost their donors.
This is their agenda, and it will do nothing to address inflation, except perhaps to make it worse were any of it to ever happen. The only thing that is sure to happen is they will be spending a lot of your money investigating the President’s son’s laptop and the Hunter Biden revenge porn conservatives worked so hard to get published in the lead up to the 2020 election. If you thought Monica’s dress was absurd, I’m afraid we haven’t seen anything yet.
Buckle up, the circus is in town.
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Sarah has been credentialed to cover President Barack Obama, then VP Joe Biden, 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, and exclusively interviewed Speaker Nancy Pelosi multiple times and exclusively covered her first home appearance after the first impeachment of then President Donald Trump.
Sarah is two-time Telly award winning video producer and a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.