Majority leader previews House Sept. agenda

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has told his members to expect votes on bills to highlight Senate gridlock when they return from the August recess.

McCarthy's memo to House Republicans on Friday was meant to put the issues on members' radar as they spend time in their districts over the five-week recess. A detailed memo of the full September agenda will be released later this month, McCarthy said.

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McCarthy said the House plans to repackage many of the so-called "jobs bills" it has already passed in this session of Congress and consolidate them into a larger package. Those measures include limiting various regulations and renewing expired tax breaks on a permanent basis, such as the research and development tax credit.

"To increase pressure on Harry Reid to finally put American workers and economic growth first, we will send the Senate a single package of our jobs bills," McCarthy said. "I want to thank the members who have suggested this approach to attempt to break the logjam in the Senate and draw more attention with Americans across the country to our solutions."

McCarthy said the House will also vote on a consolidated package of bills it has already passed to boost domestic energy. Those measures include expediting approval of the Keystone XL pipeline and opening federal lands for energy production.

Lastly, McCarthy encouraged Republicans to talk to their constituents about the effects of the healthcare law while in their districts. He noted the House Energy and Commerce Committee has approved a bill that would allow individuals who bought their health insurance plans on the group market to keep their current coverage. But he did not explicitly say if the House will vote on the bill.

"I would encourage you to speak to small businesses in your district during the month of August to collect first-hand stories to share with the conference on what devastating consequences Obamacare has had for small businesses and their employees," McCarthy said.

Even the mere mention of the healthcare law in the House majority leader's memo is significant considering that the GOP has gone largely quiet on the issue in recent months as individuals have begun using the health insurance offered under the law.

The House has not voted on a single bill to modify or repeal the healthcare law since April. That vote was on a bill - even sponsored by a Democrat - to exempt expatriates from the healthcare law's requirements.

Although not mentioned in McCarthy's memo, the House has at least one other item slated for September. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) has said the House will move a stopgap funding bill when it returns to avoid a government shutdown on Oct. 1.