Government Bytes


Monday Votes in the U.S. Senate

by Jordan Forbes / /

Before we all temporarily check out for Thanksgiving, let me put two legislative items on your radar. The Senate will be voting Monday on a motion to repeal the 1099 reporting requirement (sponsored by Senator Johanns) as well as a motion to ban earmarks for the 112th Congress (sponsored by Senator Coburn). You’ve heard about Senator Johanns’ efforts on the 1099 issue before, but I will recap:

Obamacare includes a provision that requires companies to submit 1099 forms for goods or services purchased from a vendor for $600 or more. This would entail additional, extremely burdensome regulations on businesses at a time when many are struggling amidst the dismal economic climate. Back in August, Senator Johanns introduced an amendment to the small business bill that would have eliminated the 1099 reporting requirement, without raising taxes. The amendment failed, so Senator Johanns is pushing for another floor vote next week. While his motion is unlikely to pass due to its 2/3 majority obligation, I commend him for leading the charge on this very important issue. If the vote does fail, I’m hoping that he will find another legislative vehicle to attach it to during the lame duck.

I wrote last week about a potential McCaskill-Coburn earmark moratorium amendment, but at the time we weren’t sure if it would get a vote. It appears that Senator Coburn has decided to file a motion to suspend the rules (same strategy as Johanns) in order to secure a vote on earmarks. The motion requires 2/3 majority as well, therefore it’s hard to be super optimistic about passage. That being said, it will essentially put all Senators on the record as pro- or anti-earmark, so we’re very anxious to see how the vote turns out.

We’ll be distributing Vote Alerts on both motions, but in the meantime please call your Senators  at 202-224-3121 and urge them to support these laudable initiatives.