Rapid Fire August 2, 2012: Continuing Resolution Stuns Approps
- US House and Senate leaders agreed to consider a 6-month resolution in September to keep the federal government funded through the election period. It means the work of appropriations committees won’t see the light for a while since a Continuing Resolution (CR), well, continues existing lines of funding. This affects the House most where seven FY2013 appropriations bills have already been passed, including defense earlier this month. The Senate Appropriations committee is working on its defense markup today, but with CR in sight, don’t hold your breath for a vote in the full Senate where no FY13 appropriations bills have been passed yet. Politico has more inside baseball.
- As expected, yesterday’s House Armed Services Committee hearing with OMB’s Jeff Zients didn’t produce much. Somehow averting defense budget cuts that the Administration itself deems catastrophic has become irremediably tied to increasing taxes on wealthier Americans.
- In a joint press conference with his counterpart from Israel Ehud Barak, US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said that “preventing a nuclear-armed Iran is a top national security priority by the United States and that all options – all options – are on the table.” Panetta insisted that every other option had to be exhausted before resorting to military action. Israeli officials think the current course based on sanctions and international pressure is not having the desired impact on Iran.