House waiting on Senate to act on 420 bills

Wednesday - 10/6/2010, 10:31am EDT

Ian Swanson, news editor, The Hill

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By Suzanne Kubota
Senior Internet Editor
FederalNewsRadio.com

Agency funding, cybersecurity, TSP, your federal pay raise, transit subsidies, all sorts of federal benefits.... They're all just sitting on the Hill waiting for Congress to get to them.

Since January 2009, the House has passed 420 bills that sit waiting for the Senate to decide on.

The Hill is reporting the productivity in the House has led to tension between the two chambers, including a staring contest last month over the expiring President George W. Bush-era tax cuts.

Hill News Editor Ian Swanson told Federal News Radio this means bad things if you're hoping for a raise in your January paycheck.

"You're going to have a situation after the election where you could be seeing dozens of Democrats who are there for the last time. The people who survive this election are going to be antsy and wanting to kind of get out of town. So I think it's tough to see some of the issues that are a little less under the radar getting through."

By "under the radar," Swanson explained, he means anything other than tax cuts and a continuing resolution. He said another CR will be needed passed during the lame duck session to prevent a shutdown in early December.

"It's very hard to see congress agreeing on an omnibus spending package in the lame duck, given all of their differences, and given the nerve-wracking they're going to go through after the election this year."

As for the other bills pending in the Senate, Swanson doesn't hold out much hope.

"What's happening in Washington is a situation where the House is passing bill after bill after bill and most of them are going to die in the Senate."