It was a busy week on Capitol Hill, as several high-profile issues were debated and considered in both the House and Senate. The Iraq War continued to dominate the headlines, as the Senate considered yet another measure designed to change U.S. military policy in the country. For an in-depth look at the major bills considered in Congress since Monday, we again turn to Robert McElroy’s TheWeekInCongress. His site is a great resource for citizens wishing to keep track of what their members are up to in Washington, and we urge you to check it out. Follow the headlines below to the Congresspedia articles covering the respective issues, which in turn link to and heavily rely on McElroy’s analyses.
- The Senate debated an amendment to the 2008 Defense funding bill for nearly twenty-four consecutive hours. The amendment, which was ultimately filibustered by Senate Republicans, would have required that the U.S. begin removing troops from Iraq within 120 days and have only a minimal presence in the country by Apr. 30, 2008.
- The House appointed conferees to work with the Senate on a bill intended to implement most of the security recommendations made by the 9/11 commission in 2004.
- The Senate passed the College Cost Reduction Act of 2007. The bill, previously approved by the House, seeks to lower the cost of higher education by reducing lender subsidies by $19 billion and then investing those funds in programs that increase grant amounts to students, improve access to student loans, and cut interest rates on loans.
- The House passed a 2008 spending bill for the Depts. of Labor, Education, and Health and Human Services (HHS). The $607 billion bill includes funds for better inspection and enforcement of workplace safety laws and increases in worker training and education programs.
- The House passed a bill authorizing the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to implement an assistance program to support new housing and economic development programs in rural areas.