by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
I laid out a whole series of 30 or 40 different bills that different members of the Senate have introduced, all of which, I think, can command 50 votes and unify Republicans.
Much of the presentation was on procedural vehicles that the Democrats can’t filibuster, so that we can deliver big, big wins on major priorities, whether it’s making the individual tax cuts permanent, making the small business-tax cuts permanent, all of the expensing permanent…all of those would be tremendously positive, and I think we likely could hold 50 Republicans on all of those. …
… That being said, we don’t have the votes right now to end the filibuster within the Republican conference. We may have about half the Republicans who would support it, but there is a significant number that wouldn’t. So what I’m suggesting is, for the next six months, let’s focus on procedural vehicles that can’t be filibustered.
There are principally four:
You’ve got, number one, Congressional Review Act resolutions, which we’ve used to repeal a whole bunch of Obama-era regulations. We should use that more.
Number two, rescissions — that allows you to pull back spending. The White House is talking about putting forward some rescissions. I think we ought to look at that seriously.
Number three, the biggest one, is using budget reconciliation. That’s the vehicle for many of our biggest victories last year, including the tax cut. We ought to take up another reconciliation in 2018, and score more victories for the American people.
Number four is NAFTA. I’ve proposed to the president using NAFTA as a vehicle for regulatory reform, lifting the burdens that are killing jobs.