House version commissions panel to consider 'volunteer' requirement
Congress appears ready to pass an Obama administration plan that could create mandatory public service requirements for all American youth, fulfilling a campaign promise.
On Tuesday, the Senate voted closure on the motion to proceed by a margin of 74-14 in a move that makes its ultimate passage likely.
The bill, promoted by the Obama administration as a means of encouraging America's youth to participate in voluntary community service, has received little scrutiny from Congress or the public.
Yet, a version of the bill in the House proposes to establish a Congressional Commission on Civil Service tasked with determining whether a mandatory service requirement for all young people in America could be developed and implemented, though it is not clear that provision will survive a conference committee.
Moreover, an amendment to the bill introduced by Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., one of the bill's 37 co-sponsors in the House, appears to severely restrict the First Amendment by prohibiting the youth participating in the program from attempting to influence legislation, organize or engage in protests, petitions, boycotts or strikes.
Funds under the bill are designated to be distributed through AmeriCorps, even though AmeriCorps volunteers have a history of being recruited and employed by community programs with an ideological purpose supported by Democratic Party politicians, including Planned Parenthood.
Under terms of the legislation, volunteers recruited into AmeriCorps through the GIVE Act could end up counseling Planned Parenthood clients to recommend and arrange abortions.