Congressional Climate June 19th, 2017

Video of the Day
6/16/17: Weekly Address

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Today’s Hill Action
Senate Floor Schedule
The Senate will reconvene at 4 p.m. and will be in a period of morning business. At 5:30 p.m., the Senate will vote on the nomination of Brock Long to be administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Department of Homeland Security.
Committee Hearings
None.
House Floor Schedule
The House is not in session.
Committee Hearings
None.
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GOP considers cancelling August recess to salvage agenda
Alarmed by the stalemate on healthcare reform, lack of progress on tax reform and appropriations bills that are far behind schedule, Republican lawmakers across Congress are increasingly willing to consider cancelling the month-long August recess.

Senate Republican negotiators reported that they are not close to a deal on healthcare reform and that scheduling a vote by July 4, which Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has pushed, is likely unrealistic.

That impasse has held up work on a budget resolution, which is necessary to move tax reform and the annual appropriations bills.

Once Republicans vote on a budget resolution for 2018, it will wipe out the special vehicle they plan to use to pass healthcare reform with a simple majority vote – a vehicle that was set up by the budget resolution for 2017.

Lawmakers calculate there are only 45 legislative days until the end of the fiscal year, Sept. 30.
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Lawmakers set to return scrapping over healthcare, Russia probes
Last week’s shooting at a congressional baseball practice brought a rare reprieve from Washington’s toxic political climate. It’s now an open question whether that reprieve can hold with Congress set to return to highly charged issues like health care, federal spending and investigations into Russia’s election meddling.

In the Senate this week, Republicans are scrambling for health care votes. In the House, they’re seeking to hash out a deal to get their fledgling appropriations process moving. And the congressional Russia probes in both chambers are moving full speed ahead with major hearings, as President Donald Trump continues lashing out at investigators.
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Decoding the Georgia special election
Democrat Jon Ossoff and Republican Karen Handel face off Tuesday in a House special election that’s doubling as the biggest political test of Donald Trump’s presidency so far.

Ossoff and Handel got here by finishing first and second in an all-party primary on April 18 in Georgia’s 6th Congressional District in which Ossoff won 48 percent of the vote and Handel got 20 percent to advance to the runoff. But Republican candidates together had an edge in April, 51 percent to Democrats’ combined 49 percent.

That ultraclose result gives a useful lay of the land for Tuesday’s contest, which could be just as tight. The April results show the battlegrounds within the battleground district and where each party wants to run up the score on June 20.
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Until tomorrow,
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