Minimum wage bill - tax sweeteners unconstitutional?

The minimum wage bill HR 2 arrived yesterday on the Senate floor - a rather different milieu to whence it had come!

No closed rule, of course; and Uncle Harry needing to reach across the aisle and stroke egos as a prerequisite to getting the bill passed.

There is a substitute (SA 100) - which is the bill as passed by the House, plus the Baucus-Grassley tax sweeteners in the form of the text of S 349, the Small Business and Work Opportunity Act (information on, and previous drafts of, which can be found at this Finance Committee page).

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CBPP - H.R. 4890 Worse Than You May Think

I wrote a couple of weeks ago about a new Republican proposal to give Bush a line-item veto.  At the time, I had a few major concerns.

First, one man's pork is another man's Department of Education.  Giving an executive the power to line-item veto is, as the Supreme Court has said, giving him the power to legislate.  What, after all, should keep Bush from using the line-item veto to further erode spending on programs that benefit Americans to make room for more corporate welfare and Republican pork?  This is no outrageous claim, but a logical follow-up to bills such as S.1932.

Second, even though this new Republican proposal requires Congress to approve the President's cuts, the idea is based on the good faith of Congress.  What if there was a situation in which the executive and legislative branches were controlled by the same party, and the legislature gave up the task of oversight in order to advance the interests of the party?  Or, what if the executive and legislative branches were controlled by different parties functioning in a highly partisan environment and either branch used the new rules for partisan rather than good government ends?

It seems that my concerns were not too far off.  A new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities shows that the new line-item veto proposal does much more than its proponents have been saying.

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