Allegations of sexual misconduct have rocked Washington in recent weeks, leading to the resignation of Senator Al Franken and Congressman John Conyers. On Thursday, we spoke to Congressman Bill Flores who says he’s on board with the new climate and thinks it will bring about change.
“We seem to be going through an internal house-cleansing. I’m actually fine with it, I think it’s good to get the bad actions out into the air so that we can get rid of the bad actors, irrespective of which side of the aisle they’re on.”
Congressman Flores went on to say he thinks positive change will come of this and went a step further to call for changes.
“I’d like to see one more change and that is that the employment laws of congress be exactly the same as the employment laws for the rest of the country…I hate to see this kind of stuff happen but I’m happy that we’re going to have positive outcomes coming out of it.”
It's been two months since the Las Vegas Shooting and one month since the shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas. For the first time since those tragedies, gun legislation has made it through the House of Representatives. According to Congressman Flores, the bill does three things. First, the bill improves the National Instant Criminal Background Check System(NICS) which keeps track of people’s criminal history and their legal status in regards to buying guns. Secondly, Congressman Flores said the bill starts the process of dealing with bump stocks which allowed the Vegas shooter to fire semi-automatic weapons like an automatic. Lastly, the bill allows people with a concealed carry license to carry their guns across state lines.
“We made the laws more like driver’s license laws in that particular regard. So if you’re licensed in one state, you can carry in another state.”
On Wednesday, the Senate voted to go to conference with the House on tax reform. The two chambers will now work to iron out their differences in what the president calls a "once in a generation" opportunity to change the way America collects taxes. But what are the main differences between the House's version of the tax code and the Senate's version?
“There are some differences in the way families get to deduct certain expenses,” Flores said.“There are two big differences that cause me concern, that need to be dealt with. The Senate version says the family tax system expires in seven or eight years. To me, they ought to be permanent.”
However, Congressman Flores agrees with the Senate when it comes to wavers and tuition, something he is working to keep in the final tax plan.
“I think what we’re going to wind up doing is taking the best of each of those.”
The government is once again running our of funding. Congress needs to pass a government spending bill by Friday in order to keep the government open. We saw this same issue two months ago when president Trump made a short term deal with Democrats to fund the government for eight weeks. According to Flores, we will likely see another short-term solution.
“Let me say this at the outset. The House has done its job, it’s passed two separate sets of bills. One in the summertime to fund critical parts of government. And then we passed an all-of-government funding solution back on September 3rd. The problem has been the senate hasn’t passed anything like that.” Flores went on to say the house will pass a two week spending bill on Thursday.