According to the American Political Network, the Republican Congress that reconvenes Tuesday after a winter break will follow a strategy that is “far less aggressive” than last session’s 100-day “forced march” centered around the “Contract with America.” House Speaker Newt Gingrich and GOP leaders are reportedly moving on a “more patient agenda with fewer issues, instead of trying to change the political landscape in one swoop.” One intention is to introduce a new batch of spending bills stripped of the social riders on abortion and other issues that last year were political “flash points” with the White House and Democratic leaders.
Congres is expected to vote on legislation protecting parents from “government intrusion” in issues such as their children’s sex education and medical treatment, according to the Christian Coalition’s Brian Lopina. Congress plans to send previously-passed legislation banning the late-term D&X abortion procedure to Clinton and hopes to override his expected veto. (See news item: 2-28-96: Change in Abortion Bill Urged by Clinton). Some anti-choice opponents will also “switch… tactics in hopes of broadening support” and will push for adoption legislation, including a $5,000 adoption tax credit and a measure promoting interracial adoption. Both measures were part of the vetoed budget.
According to Gary Bauer of the Family Research Council, “A lot of issues with a values component are going to be front and center all through this year.”