Congressman Rice Joins Colleagues to Pass Stopgap Funding Measure

Bill includes language pertaining to ISIS/Syria, Internet Tax Freedom, & Export-Import Bank

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the House of Representatives passed legislation to extend current spending until December 11, 2014.  H. J. Res. 124, Continuing Appropriations Resolution for Fiscal Year 2015 (CR), also extends the Internet Tax Freedom Act through December 11 and extends the Export-Import Bank until June 30, 2015.  To address the volatile situation in Syria, the House adopted an amendment to the CR which authorizes the Department of Defense to train and equip vetted Syrian opposition groups.  Such authorization lasts through the length of the CR, December 11, or through the passage of the FY 2015 National Defense Authorization Act, whichever occurs first. Congressman Tom Rice (SC-07) released the following statements regarding the passage of this legislation:

ISIS/ Syria

“ISIS and the infiltration of radical jihadist groups in the Middle East is unnerving.  The President’s reluctance to intervene, and admission of having no strategy, has led to much of the ongoing chaos and turmoil.  While it is good to see President Obama come to Congress with his strategy recommendations, we must be very careful about who we are aligning ourselves with in the Middle East.  The amendment we passed today responds to the President’s request with a narrow and tailored plan to train and equip vetted ISIS opposition in Syria.  It also increases Congressional oversight and transparency.  This was not an easy vote, and it is not perfect by any means, but it is a first step in the right direction in addressing this crisis.”

Export-Import bank

“Exporting goods and services abroad boosts our economy and promotes growth at home.  Many of the companies, both large and small, that call South Carolina home rely on Ex-Im to compete globally. In South Carolina, the bank has financed $2 billion in exports for 71 businesses, including 36 small businesses.  Additionally, in the past two years, Ex-Im bank has earned a profit of $1 billion annually for American taxpayers.  In result, we all benefit from extending the Ex-Im Bank’s authorization until June 30, so we can continue to have a meaningful debate about reforms to the bank.”

Internet Tax Freedom Act

“More Americans are using the internet than ever before.  Whether you go online to stay in touch with friends, share pictures with family, conduct business, purchase music, or share recipes, the internet has become a resourceful part of our lives.  Recognizing the importance of the internet, my colleagues and I extended the ban on the taxation of internet access until December.  It is critical we have a robust debate on why internet access should remain tax free.  Rest assured, I will continue to advocate for permanent tax free internet access.”  

Additional Background on H.J. Res. 124:

  • Holds at the current 2014 rate of 1.012 trillion as agreed upon in the Ryan/Murray budget.
  • Continues all polices contained in existing appropriations law, including pro-life riders.
  • Finally, it provides flexibility, as provided in previous years, for Customs and Border Protection and Immigration and Customs Enforcement to meet border security needs.