Congressional Climate April 4, 2017

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Video of the Day
President Trump Meets With President Al-Sisi

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Today’s Hill Action
Senate Floor Schedule
The Senate reconvenes at 10 a.m. and will resume consideration of the nomination Elaine C. Duke, of Virginia, to be deputy secretary of Homeland Security. The Senate will vote on the nomination at noon, at which point it will recess until 2:15 p.m. Further votes are expected during the session.
Nominations: Elaine C. Duke, of Virginia, to be deputy secretary of Homeland Security.
Committee Hearings
9:30 a.m.: Southwest Border Fencing
9:30 a.m.: U.S. Strategic Command Programs
10:00 a.m.: Energy Delivery System Cybersecurity
10:00 a.m.: FDA User Fee Agreements (Part II)
10:00 a.m.: Clayton Nomination
10:15 a.m.: U.S.-EU Partnership Against Russian Aggression
2:15 p.m.: Intelligence Matters
2:15 p.m.: Intelligence Matters
2:30 p.m.: Multimodal Freight Transportation Network
2:30 p.m.: National Water Hazards and Vulnerabilities
2:30 p.m.: Cyber Threats to the U.S.
House Floor Schedule
The House reconvenes at noon for legislative business and is expected to consider a measure under suspension of the rules. The chamber is also expected to consider the rule for a bill (HR 1304) that would prevent stop-loss insurance for self-insured health care plans from being considered health care insurance and a bill (HR 1343) that would increase the threshold for enhanced disclosures for securities provided to employees of a privately held company.
HR 353 – Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act
HR 1343 – Encouraging Employee Ownership Act
H Res 241 – A resolution providing for consideration of the bill (HR 1304) to amend the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, the Public Health Service Act, and the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to exclude from the definition of health insurance coverage certain medical stop-loss insurance obtained by certain plan sponsors of group health plans (official title to be confirmed).
Committee Hearings
10:00 a.m.: Veterans Crisis Line Assessment
10:00 a.m.: Pending Legislation
10:00 a.m.: DEA/ATF Oversight
10:00 a.m.: Farm Bill – Commodity Policy (Part II)
10:00 a.m.: Job Training Programs/Federal Support
10:00 a.m.: Enabling National Airspace Innovation
10:00 a.m.: Defense Reform
10:00 a.m.: Brownfields Reauthorization
10:00 a.m.: Federal Reserve’s Mandate/Governance Structure
10:00 a.m.: ATF/DEA Confidential Informant Programs
10:00 a.m.: New Border Security Task Forces
10:00 a.m.: Missing Children Assistance/Juvenile Justice Reform
10:15 a.m.: Public-Private Healthcare Cybersecurity
11:30 a.m.: Campus First Amendment Protections
2:00 p.m.: VA Approved Appraisers Program
2:00 p.m.: Farm Bill – Credit Programs
2:00 p.m.: Coast Guard/Maritime Transportation Authorization
2:00 p.m.: Federal IT Workforce Challenges
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El-Sisi’s Trump Triumph Contrasts With Fight to Spur Economy
Egypt received some unsettling news after President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi’s upbeat visit with Donald Trump: Gains in private sector economic activity reversed course in March, suggesting the economy hasn’t yet turned the corner despite painful austerity measures and currency reform.

Analysts had said a cordial White House visit would help to validate the Egyptian leader’s war on Islamists and measures he promoted to boost an economy that’s struggled since longtime president Hosni Mubarak was overthrown in 2011. El-Sisi, eager to keep about $1.5 billion in annual U.S. aid intact, received a warm welcome on Monday from Trump, who said he’s “done a fantastic job in a very difficult situation.”

While it’s not clear how much aid Egypt will receive from the Trump administration, the tone toward El-Sisi was more positive than during the Obama era. The previous administration had been critical of his deadly crackdown on Islamists and other opponents, and had never hosted him in Washington.
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Trump White House Pushes New Health Plan as GOP Seeks Details
House lawmakers hope Tuesday to release a new Trump administration-backed version of the health-care bill they had to abandon last month in an embarrassing setback to their pledge to repeal Obamacare.

“We’re at that conceptual stage right now,” House Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters Tuesday morning. “We don’t have bill text or an agreement yet. ” GOP leaders barely mentioned health care in the private conference meeting Tuesday morning and offered few details.
Representative Mark Walker, chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee, said Tuesday that the Energy and Commerce Committee is “putting it together and language should be ready this evening.”

Late Monday, Vice President Mike Pence and White House chief of staff Reince Priebus met with House conservatives to lay out the details of the plan. One lawmaker said it could allow states to charge higher rates to sick people. President Donald Trump’s budget director, Mick Mulvaney, was also in the meeting. House GOP leaders said earlier that no health-care vote is planned, but several lawmakers, including a close ally of Trump’s, said they think a vote could still occur this week.
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McConnell: Supreme Court fight will decide ‘future of the Senate’
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) sent a warning shot to Democrats, saying the “future of the Senate” hangs on if they filibuster Neil Gorsuch’s Supreme Court nomination.

“It should be unsettling to everyone that our colleagues across the aisle have brought the Senate to this new low,” the Kentucky Republican said on Tuesday from the Senate floor.

McConnell added Democrats could still “do the right thing,” saying that “history will be watching and the future of the Senate will hang on their choice.”

McConnell will file cloture on Gorsuch’s nomination later Tuesday, setting up a showdown over the Supreme Court on Thursday.
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Until tomorrow,
Lobbyit.com

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