House first votes in January: Condemning UN-Israel vote
WASHINGTON — House GOP leaders are planning to move quickly to pass three measures after the new Congress is sworn in next week that would boost President-elect Donald Trump’s agenda before he is sworn in, a senior House Republican leadership aide told CNN Wednesday.
Republicans are looking to bring up a non-binding House resolution condemning a recent vote at United Nations that has caused intense blowback from Israel. That resolution pronounced Israeli settlements in the West Bank “had no legal validity, constituting a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the vision of two States living side-by-side in peace and security.”
Congressional Republicans denounced the vote and the US move to abstain and are threatening additional action targeting the UN, such as suspending funding.
Some top Democrats on Capitol Hill have also criticized the Obama administration’s handling of the matter and the resolution is likely to pass with significant bipartisan support.
The number two House Democrat issued a critical statement Tuesday evening breaking with the President’s strategy on the vote.
“I urged the Administration to veto the recently passed U.N. Security Council resolution regarding Israel and settlements. Unfortunately, they failed to do so, and Israel’s enemies were strengthened,” Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland, said.
In addition, Republican leaders plan votes on two bills addressing federal regulations that have both already passed in the last session.
The REINS Act requires Congress to approve any major new regulation before it can be signed by the president and implemented by federal agencies.
The other, the so-called “Midnight Rules Act,” would roll together any regulations put out in the last days of a departing Administration and allow Congress to nullify them.
With quick votes in the House, GOP leaders are hoping the Senate will follow suit on these two bill can be enacted into law in the early days of President-elect Trump’s term.
The decision to focus on these three items as the first House votes in 2017 was first reported by Politico.