Don’t Count Out HR 7 Yet: House GOP Could Revive Their Bill This Week

Last week, when House Speaker John Boehner indicated his willingness to bring up the Senate transportation bill, it seemed like an admission of defeat for the brazenly partisan approach and insanely destructive policies the Republicans have been promoting. But it’s not over yet.

Check out the nuances of Boehner’s statement, quoted in The Hill last Thursday:

Will Boehner bring the House bill back from the dead? Photo: ##http://topics.cincinnati.com/John_Boehner/##Cincinnati.com##

“As I told the members yesterday, the current plan is to see what the Senate can produce and to bring their bill up,” Boehner told reporters at his weekly news conference Thursday.

“In the meantime, we’re going to continue to have conversations with our members about a longer term approach, which frankly most of our members want. But at this point in time, the plan is to bring up the Senate bill – or something like it.”

House members are away from the Capitol this week on recess, but this is when the GOP leadership is having those “conversations.” And when Boehner said he’ll be discussing a “longer term approach,” what he means is a bill that gives short shrift to transit, biking, and walking so the House can squeeze out more money for highways — and hence more years of spending for their bill.

The GOP bill has too much oil drilling to win votes from the Democratic side of the aisle. But if leadership can buy time to convince enough hesitant Republicans that they’re better off supporting Boehner’s bill than the bipartisan Senate bill, they could yet gather together enough votes to set up a showdown with the Senate.

So if you want to protect policies that invest in transit and safe streets, this is no time to rest on your laurels. Even with the House in recess, advocates are gearing up for a last push this week to make sure the bill is really, truly dead.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Pelosi Challenges Boehner to Cancel Recess, Pound Out a Transpo Bill

|
All play and no work makes Jack an unemployed construction worker. That, more or less, was Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s message to Speaker John Boehner today. She called on him to cancel next week’s recess and work on passing a transportation bill, now struggling through a divisive conference process. “Almost three months after Senate passage [of the […]

House Speaker John Boehner Will Delay Vote on House Transpo Bill

|
First, John Boehner split his transportation bill into three smaller bills that deal with transportation, oil and gas drilling, and government employee pensions separately. Now, it looks like the transportation component won’t be voted on until after the President’s Day recess, according to Politico: Boehner’s office attributed the decision to two factors: One of the […]

Boehner Masks GOP Attack on Safe Streets By Opposing Flowers

|
House Speaker John Boehner spoke to reporters yesterday morning. His message: “Republicans Relentlessly Focused on Jobs.” “House Republicans want to get a highway bill done,” he said. “We want a bill, and our colleagues are working toward producing a bill. We just want to make sure it’s a bill that includes real reforms, to ensure […]

No Details Yet on House Transportation and Oil Drilling Bill

|
House leaders did not unveil a bill at their press conference this morning. House Transportation Committee Chair John Mica said the bill, when it is released, will: consolidate duplicative parts of the federal transportation system shift responsibility to states and local governments to move transportation projects forward increase the ability to leverage financial resources significantly […]