Ernst, senators talk skipping August recess

Source: The Daily Nonpareil

U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, is among a group of senators calling for Congress to delay or eliminate its August recess.

The effort is by Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., is similar to an effort made last year. But the call takes on a new resonance this year, after President Donald Trump said in March that he would refuse to sign another massive, catchall government spending bill like the $1.3 trillion measure Congress passed that month.

“As far as I know, being a member of Congress is the only occupation where you can neglect some of the most important duties and then take a month-long vacation right before the deadline,” Ernst said during a press conference on Tuesday attended by a number of senators, including Perdue. “Right now, we have less than 12 weeks to finish 12 appropriations bills before the end of this fiscal year. We have countless nominations, as Senator Perdue noted, and we have a number of other important ‘must-pass’ legislative initiatives.”

“If we take another August off, we will likely find ourselves once again relying on these horrible continuing resolutions, which have a devastating effect on our military and create billions in waste across our federal government.”

Last week, President Donald Trump urged the Senate to get its work done on funding before the August break, “or NOT GO HOME.”

The president tweeted Saturday that “Wall and Border Security should be included.” He also said that he is “waiting for approval of almost 300 nominations, worst in history.”

The president’s push for speedy action on spending measures and nominations followed a letter from the group of Senate Republicans led by Perdue and Ernst pressing Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to cancel the August recess later this year.

On Wednesday, Politico reported that McConnell is considering killing the recess. The outlet reported McConnell is going to speak with Trump and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., about the matter.