Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidDraft House bill ignites new Yucca Mountain fight Week ahead: House to revive Yucca Mountain fight Warren builds her brand with 2020 down the road MORE (D-Nev.) said the 114th Congress should immediately pass the reauthorize of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA).
Next year’s Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), said a vote on the Keystone XL oil pipeline is his top priority, but that was before Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) blocked the Senate from passing a TRIA reauthorization just before the Senate adjourned for the year.
The federal program creates a backstop for the insurance industry in the case of a terrorist attack. It was created after 9/11 and helps ensure major sporting venues and large cities can reinvest after an attack.
Earlier in the year, the Senate passed a bipartisan reauthorization worked out by Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), but House Republicans didn’t like that bill and insisted on adding riders to the bill.
“House Republicans sat on a bipartisan bill, carefully negotiated between Democrats and Republicans, that passed the Senate 93-4 back in July,” Schumer said Wednesday. “Then, after repeated warnings from the Senate that loading up a bill with extraneous and unrelated riders at the last minute could cause terrorism insurance to lapse, the House GOP went down that perilous path, only to be blocked by a member of their own party. This outcome was as foreseeable as it was avoidable.”
Republicans will control the upper chamber next year and Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) has retired, so the bill could come up again.