Federal Government

Virginia Festival of the Book.
9:40 am
Wed March 18, 2015

Congressional Gridlock-Busting Plan Outlined by Author

Jason Grumet heads the non-profit Bipartisan Policy Center.
Credit BPC

Washington's partisan political gridlock can be unlocked, according to one of the speakers at the upcoming Virginia Festival of the Book.

"The good news is that it doesn't involve a Constitutional convention or a Mars invasion."

That's Jason Grumet, whose new book, City of Rivals, proposes some intuitive solutions, such as more time for Congress to hang out together. And some not-so-intuitive solutions, such as bringing back earmarks, which Congress banned five years ago.

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Scrambling for Plan B
12:29 pm
Sun February 22, 2015

Obamacare on the Ropes

One of the biggest Supreme Court cases of this term could wipe away the insurance subsidies that tens of thousands of Virginians now rely on under the Affordable Care Act.

Remember the last time the Supreme Court took up so called Obamacare? It surprised Court watchers by ruling the individual health insurance mandate is constitutional under Congress’ power to tax.

“Perhaps the celebration of a five to four ruling that the Affordable Care Act was constitutional might have been premature.”

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Government & Politics
8:24 am
Thu February 12, 2015

Federal Budget Climate Component: Impact on Virginia

Flickr user Micolo J
Credit Creative Commons, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

President Obama’s budget revived a debate at the Capitol over energy policy and climate change. 

As lawmakers like to say, “budgets embody values,” and on the Hill there’s no question over whether the president’s budget shows his values in regards to the nation’s energy sector. He wants to hike clean energy spending by seven percent and offer a myriad of states some four billion dollars if they clean up their air at a quicker pace. Virginia Republican Congressman Morgan Griffith says the budget would be another blow to his southwestern district.      

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Offshore Drilling
8:46 am
Tue February 3, 2015

Drilling Off of Virginia's Coast: Roadblocks

Virginia's Coast. Photo by Flickr user Mackenzie Brunson.
Credit Creative Commons

A bipartisan group of Virginia lawmakers support drilling off the commonwealth’s coast for oil and gas. But not many in the state’s congressional delegation are happy with the White House announcement it’s opening up the state’s coast to offshore drilling.

The White House was prepared to allow drilling off Virginia’s coast in 2010 but then the Deepwater

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Budget Cuts
7:47 am
Mon February 2, 2015

Senator Tim Kaine Glad Sequester Path Could Soon End

Flickr user Nicolas Raymond
Credit Creative Commons, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

President Obama is sending a $4 trillion budget to Congress this morning, and Democrats in the region are glad it calls for lifting budget caps on most federal agencies.

Remember sequestration? It’s those indiscriminate budget cuts that rip through most every federal agency. Many first term lawmakers like Virginia Democratic Senator Tim Kaine say it’s dumb for that deal to tie lawmaker’s hands now.

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