Part of a Republican messaging effort
Still, it’s been one of the House GOP’s stated priorities since this session began. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor featured the proposal extensively in a February speech outlining the party’s 2014 agenda, one “based on a shared vision of creating the conditions of health, happiness and prosperity for more Americans and their families and to restrain Washington from interfering in those pursuits.”
In that way, the bill is part of a Republican rebranding effort of sorts: Rather than dwelling on deficit reduction packages and fighting with Democrats over taxes (to be sure, something Republicans still plan to do), the party is trying to emphasize it’s focus on helping the American family.
“There is no doubt that we have been looking at the debt crisis, the escalating debt crisis, deficits that are running $1 trillion a year, what we can do to get that under control,” Kline said. “That has consumed a lot of our energy and a lot of our effort as we look for ways to try and balance the budget. … Our energy has been directed there, and less so into some of these other issues.”