Congressional Climate August 3rd, 2017

Video of the Day
President Trump Makes an Announcement with Senator Tom Cotton and Senator David Perdue

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Today’s Hill Action
Senate Floor Schedule
The Senate reconvenes at 10 a.m. and will resume consideration of the motion to proceed to a bill (HR 2430) that would reauthorize the Food and Drug Administration’s ability to collect user feeds from the prescription drug and medical devices industries through Oct. 1 2023. A cloture vote on the motion to proceed is scheduled for 11 a.m. At noon, the Senate will vote on confirmation of the nomination of Dan. R. Brouillette to be deputy secretary of Energy.
Committee Hearings
9:45am: Insurance Fraud Review
10:00am: Kaplan/Bassett/Charrow Nominations
10:00am: Reducing Wildland Fire Risk
10:00am: Pending Business
10:00am: Pending Business
TBA: Pending Nominations
House Floor Schedule
The House is not in session.
Committee Hearings
None.
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Trump’s Counting on a General to Contain White House Chaos
Donald Trump has a habit of projecting his anxieties while trying to mask them. You can sometimes tell what’s going on inside the White House by checking the president’s Twitter-feed and assuming the opposite of whatever he claims.

Take the recent White House shakeup that abruptly remade his senior staff. On the morning of July 31, Trump fired off a tweet extolling the booming stock market and low unemployment rate and then added, a bit defensively, “No WH chaos!”

This was a sure sign that the chaos inside the White House had reached a fever pitch. Within an hour of Trump’s tweet, the president’s new communications director, Anthony Scaramucci, who’d been on the job for only 10 days, was sent marching. This followed the sudden firing of Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, which came only days after the resignation of Press Secretary Sean Spicer. Had Attorney General Jeff Sessions not been so determined to cling to his job-Trump called him “beleaguered” and publicly humiliated him for a week-he, too, might have joined the exodus. When Trump tweeted “No WH chaos!” what he was really signaling was “Total WH chaos!”

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The Health 202: Health insurers can combat opioid abuse, too
Health providers and policymakers are writing their hands over the country’s growing and tragic opioid abuse crisis, but they’re not the only ones. Insurers – who often pay for prescription painkillers that can lead to dependence – are also looking for ways to discourage Americans from over using opioids.

Cigna has taken a leading role in this effort.
As the country’s fifth largest insurer, covering nearly 15 million people, it set a goal in May 2016 of reducing the use of opioids among its own customers by 25 percent over the following three years. Fourteen months later, the company says it’s nearly halfway there.

“We determined that despite no profit rationale – in fact it’s contrary to that – that societally we needed to step into the void and we stepped in pretty aggressively,” Cigna CEO David Cordani told me in an interview last month.

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Trump Unveils Legislation Limiting Legal Immigration
President Trump unveiled controversial legislation on Wednesday that would sharply curtail legal immigration to the United States.

The president met at the White House with two Republican senators pushing the legislation, Tom Cotton of Arkansas and David Perdue of Georgia.

One of Trump’s campaign promises was to reduce immigration, illegal and legal. The Cotton-Perdue legislation, also known as the RAISE Act (for Reforming American Immigration for a Strong Economy), would cut by half the number of legal immigrants accepted into the U.S. each year.

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