Becker’s Washington Weekly: Week of September 14, 2020

Becker’s Washington Weekly: Week of September 14, 2020

THE HOUSE

The House formally returns to session on Monday with a series of votes on a number of non-controversial bills in the evening. The pressure on House Democrats and Speaker Nancy Pelosi is increasing as negotiations on another coronavirus relief bill have stalled. Democratic Leadership has thus far been steadfast in their calls for another large, comprehensive relief package like the Heroes Act that the House passed in May. However, there are reportedly several rank-and-file House Democrats pushing for a series of votes on piecemeal legislation. Pelosi and her team must also finalize a deal on a Continuing Resolution to fund the government beyond September 30th. Passing a “clean” CR that funds the government through December, as many Republicans are calling for, would significantly decrease the likelihood of another pandemic relief bill passing before the November election.

While negotiations on relief legislation and a CR continue, there are several notable House Committee hearings this week, including:

  • The Technology Modernization and Economic Opportunity Subcommittees of the Veterans Affairs Committee hearing on “Moving Beyond Patchwork Systems: The Future of Education Services IT” on Wednesday
  • The Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee of the Veterans Affairs Committee hearing entitled “Modernizing VA’s Medical Supply Chain: Lessons Learned From the Pandemic” on Wednesday
  • The Small Business Committee hybrid markup of legislation to amend the Small Business Act and the Small Business Investment Act on Wednesday
  • The Financial Services Committee hearing entitled “Prioritizing Fannie’s and Freddie’s Capital over America’s Homeowners and Renters? A Review of the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic”
  • The Judiciary Committee hearing on “Enforcing the Ban on Imports Produced by Forced Labor in Xinjiang” on Thursday

THE SENATE

The Senate is also back in session this week. It is expected that, as negotiations on the larger issues outlined above continue, the Senate will take up a number of nominations to fill federal judgeships in California’s Central and Southern Districts as well as Illinois’ Northern and Southern Districts. There are also a few relevant Senate Committee hearings expected this week, including:

  • On Tuesday, the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee will hold a hearing on “Compensating College Athletes: Examining the Potential Impact on Athletes and Institutions”
  • On Wednesday, the Budget Committee will hold a roundtable to examine federal housing assistance programs
  • On Thursday, the Foreign Relations Committee will hold a hearing entitled “Advancing US Engagement and Countering China in the Indo-Pacific and Beyond”

THE ADMINISTRATION

On Monday, President Trump participated in a Latinos for Trump Coalition roundtable discussion in Phoenix. On Tuesday, the President is expected to host delegates from Israel and the United Arab Emirates for a deal signing ceremony. The next day, President Trump is scheduled to host a call with Jewish leaders from around the country and deliver remarks at a NRCC dinner in Washington, DC. On Friday, President Trump is expected to speak at campaign rallies in Bemidji, Minnesota and Mosinee, Wisconsin.