House Republicans to vote on bills for ‘Stop Government Abuse’ week

Alex Pappas Political Reporter
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House Republicans are preparing to vote this week on a series of bills that they say would tackle problems of government abuse.

Majority Leader Eric Cantor said Monday that the package of bills will address “government abuse that is threatening people’s liberty and their hard-earned paychecks.”

“The Obama Administration continues to abuse its power through selective enforcement of the laws and the use of executive actions to bypass Congress,”  Cantor said in a statement provided to The Daily Caller. “Each day, hard-working, middle class Americans are worried about their jobs, worried about their health care, and worried about whether they will ever be able to get ahead.”

“The House will act to hold the Obama Administration accountable for its continual overreach,” he said. “The American people expect and deserve better from their government.”

In a memo to lawmakers on Friday, Cantor outlined the legislation the House will consider:

  • Representative Virginia Foxx’s Unfunded Mandates Information and Transparency Act, which will enhance transparency, accountability, and awareness of federal mandates.
  • Chairman Darrel Issa’s FOIA Act which directs federal agencies to process FOIA with a presumption of openness, placing the burden on them to justify withholding information. The bill also creates a pilot FOIA online program, which allows users to submit requests at one location, and for agencies to automatically post responsive records online.
  • The Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act, authored by Chairman Darrel Issa, reforms the procurement management process the Government uses to purchase approximately $80 billion annually in IT products and services.
  • Representative James Lankford’s Taxpayers Right-To-Know Act requires every federal agency to provide taxpayers an annual report card on all of its programs, providing administrative costs and staffing information, expenditures for services, and number of program recipients.
  • Representative Billy Long’s Taxpayer Transparency Act of 2013 requires executive branch agencies to include a disclaimer to alert the public to any communication (mailers, brochures, TV/radio ads, billboards, emails, etc.) paid for at taxpayer expense.
  • The Private Property Rights Protection Act authored by Representative Jim Sensenbrenner denies some federal economic development funds to states and localities that abuse eminent domain powers by taking private property from one private entity and giving it to another private entity, and provides for causes of action to enforce the law in court.
  • Chairman Bob Goodlatte’s Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act allows wireless phones to be “unlocked,” thus giving consumers the ability to connect to different wireless communications networks
  • Representative Sean Duffy’s Consumer Financial Protection Safety and Soundness Improvement Act of 2013 would bring much needed accountability and oversight to the CFPB, which is one of the most powerful agencies in the U.S.
  • Finally two bills by Representative Peter Roskam would protect Americans from further abuses by the IRS. The Taxpayer Transparency and Efficient Audit Act would require the IRS to disclose to the taxpayer when the IRS has shared their tax information with another government agency and place a time limit on how long an individual can be subjected to an IRS audit. The Protecting Taxpayers from Intrusive IRS Requests Act would prevent the IRS from inquiring on an individual’s religious, political, or social beliefs.

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