For the seventh time in two years, the House passed legislation on Wednesday approving the Keystone XL pipeline, a 1,700-mile project to carry heavy oil from Canadian tar sands to refineries on the Gulf Coast. And for the seventh straight time, the bill—approved on a 241-175 vote—is likely to have little substantive effect.
That is how National Journal once described the jurisdiction of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. House rules offer one definition of the committee’s turf, but a practical, bottom-up view of the committee’s territory is visible in the word cloud below. It shows the terms most common to the titles of the almost 350 hearings held by the House Energy and Commerce Committee and its subcommittees in the 111th and 112th Congresses. The larger the word, the more frequently it appeared in those hearing titles.
Shortly after Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., won the chairmanship of the House Energy and Commerce Committee in December 2010, he invited all the former committee chairmen and their wives to dinner at Carmine’s in downtown Washington.
President Obama has chosen many of the candidates for his second-term Cabinet, but he still has eight positions left to fill. Here's a look at which positions are open, the leading contenders to fill them, and the Cabinet choices he has already made.
A bipartisan pair of lawmakers is urging Interior Secretary Ken Salazar to disclose whether as many as 1,700 federally protected wild horses now unaccounted for were sold to a middleman who illegally transported them to Mexico for slaughter.
On a recent trip to Anchorage, Alaska, Tommy Beaudreau stopped by the sledding hill near his elementary school. “I remember thinking it was like Everest,” he said. Today, that hill looks like a beginner’s slope to Beaudreau.
Nobody is really happy with the Obama administration’s new five-year oil-and-gas drilling plan, which took a few steps back from the president’s pre-BP-spill drilling proposal of 2010 but also a few steps forward from what environmentalists wanted by allowing more exploration off the coast of Alaska. But neither is anyone really all that angry about the new proposal, which Interior Secretary Ken Salazar unveiled on Tuesday.