Blame the Doc Fix! Congress Fails to Send Obama Ukraine Bill This Week

Heartburn over a quick, sneaky vote Thursday on the Medicare payments has made members wary of voice votes, aides say.

A pro-Russian protester takes down a Ukrainian flag as activists storm a Ukrainian air base in western Crimea on Saturday. The House Foreign Affairs Committee on Tuesday approved a Ukraine sanctions bill with language that may lead to tightened penalties against Iran's supporters.
National Journal
Stacy Kaper
March 28, 2014, 9:03 a.m.

After much back and forth this week about how the House and Sen­ate would fi­nally send sub­stan­tially sim­il­ar le­gis­la­tion to aid Ukraine to the White House, the le­gis­la­tion is rolling over to next week, con­gres­sion­al aides said Fri­day.

The House and Sen­ate have each passed es­sen­tially the same set of meas­ures de­signed to provide loan guar­an­tees to Ukraine while im­pos­ing sanc­tions against Rus­sia meant to pun­ish Pres­id­ent Vladi­mir Putin. But they are not in the same pack­age, which is ne­ces­sary to send a bill to the pres­id­ent’s desk.

Late Thursday the Sen­ate ap­proved by un­an­im­ous con­sent fund­ing for Voice of Amer­ica and sim­il­ar European broad­casts in­to east­ern Ukraine and Crimea geared to­ward eth­nic Rus­si­an com­munit­ies, which was in­cluded in the House le­gis­la­tion.

House law­makers had been ex­pec­ted to ap­prove the Sen­ate Ukraine pack­age Fri­day on voice vote, while the cham­ber is ad­journed in a pro forma ses­sion. But after heart­burn over a quick voice vote on the so-called doc-fix le­gis­la­tion Thursday, the cham­ber de­cided to in­stead put the re­main­ing Ukraine le­gis­la­tion on its sus­pen­sion cal­en­dar, for quick de­bate and ap­prov­al on Tues­day.

The latest delay is only for a few days, but comes at the end of a long month of un­cer­tainty as law­makers’ over­whelm­ing dis­ap­prov­al of Rus­sia’s in­va­sion and an­nex­a­tion of Crimea struggled to trans­late in­to a straight­for­ward le­gis­lat­ive path — des­pite wide­spread bi­par­tis­an agree­ment on the fun­da­ment­al ne­ces­sity of a U.S. re­sponse.

A House aide said the ur­gency lessened after Ukraine re­ceived aid from the In­ter­na­tion­al Mon­et­ary Fund this week, al­low­ing Con­gress more breath­ing room to come up with a le­gis­lat­ive deal.

What We're Following See More »
WILL APPEAR TOGETHER TOMORROW
As Expected, Clinton Goes with Kaine
8 hours ago
THE LATEST
SO MUCH FOR THE RATINGS BUMP
Convention Ratings Same as 2012
15 hours ago
THE LATEST
8,000 DOCUMENTS
Wikileaks Releases Trove of DNC Docs
16 hours ago
THE DETAILS

"Wikileaks published more than 8,000 documents purportedly taken from the Democratic National Committee Friday, just days before the start of the party's convention in Philadelphia. The documents included briefings on off-the-record fundraisers and candid photographs."

Source:
YES, WE KAINE?
Clinton Announcing VP Pick Today
19 hours ago
THE LATEST

Hillary Clinton "is widely expected to announce her choice" of vice president "in an email to supporters while on a campaign swing in Florida on Friday afternoon." The consensus: it'll be Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, although Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack are also said to be in the running.

Source:
EARLY BUMP FOR TRUMP?
New Round of Polls Show a Tight Race
23 hours ago
THE LATEST
  • A Rasmussen Reports poll shows Donald Trump ahead of Hillary Clinton, 43%-42%, the fourth week in a row he's led the poll (one of the few poll in which he's led consistently of late).
  • A Reuters/Ipsos survey shows Clinton leading 40%-36%. In a four-way race, she maintains her four-point lead, 39%-35%, with Gary Johnson and Jill Stein pulling 7% and 3%, respectively.
  • And the LA Times/USC daily tracking poll shows a dead heat, with Trump ahead by about half a percentage point.
×