What’s Happening in Washington: Week of May 16th, 2023
Headlines to Know:
Title 42 Expires, Sec. Mayorkas Draws Heat
The U.S. is putting new restrictions into place at its southern border to try to stop migrants from crossing illegally and encourage them instead to apply for asylum online through a new process. The changes come with the end of coronavirus restrictions on asylum that have allowed the U.S. to quickly turn back migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border for the past three years. Those restrictions are known as Title 42, because the authority comes from Title 42 of a 1944 public health law allowing curbs on migration in the name of protecting public health. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas has drawn criticism from both Republicans and Democrats on the state of the southern border. Expect hearings and long-drawn criticism on immigration to emerge as a discussion point on Capitol Hill.
Biden Administration, Congress Make Debt Limit Progress
The outlines of a possible deal to raise the debt ceiling and limit spending are starting to emerge, but negotiators are far from an agreement as President Biden and top lawmakers are set to meet at the White House on Tuesday afternoon. White House and congressional staff have been meeting behind closed doors for several days, and people briefed on the discussions said they were making incremental progress. But Tuesday’s meeting between Mr. Biden and the congressional leaders will be a significant test of whether the staff-level work can win broader buy-in, amid mounting signs that progressive Democrats are opposed to some of the proposals under discussion.
Inflation Eases but Markets Continue to Dip
Stocks dipped Tuesday as investors digested a lackluster forecast from Home Depot. Wall Street also turned its attention to a meeting between congressional leaders and President Joe Biden on the U.S. debt ceiling. The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded 127 points lower, or 0.4%. The S&P 500 fell 0.2% along with the Nasdaq Composite. Dow member Home Depot pulled back by 3.3% after the home improvement retailer reported disappointing quarterly revenue and cut its full-year guidance.
Special Counsel Durham Releases Report on 2016 FBI Investigation
John H. Durham, the Trump-era special counsel who for four years has pursued a politically fraught investigation into the Russia inquiry, accused the F.B.I. of having “discounted or willfully ignored material information” that countered the narrative of collusion between Donald J. Trump and Russia in a final report made public on Monday. Mr. Durham’s 306-page report revealed little substantial new information about the inquiry, known as Crossfire Hurricane, and it failed to produce the kinds of blockbuster revelations accusing the bureau of politically motivated misconduct that former President Donald J. Trump and his allies suggested Mr. Durham would uncover. Instead, the report — released without substantive comment or any redactions by Attorney General Merrick B. Garland — largely recounted previously exposed flaws in the inquiry, while concluding that the F.B.I. suffered from confirmation bias and a “lack of analytical rigor” as it pursued leads about Mr. Trump’s ties to Russia.
- House Homeland Security: “Protecting the Homeland: An Examination of Federal Efforts to Support State and Local Law Enforcement”
- House Transportation & Infrastructure: The Next Fifty Years of the Clean Water Act: Examining the Law and Infrastructure Project Completion
- House Armed Services: Member Day
- House Foreign Affairs: Markups
- House Financial Services: Oversight of Prudential Regulators
- House Judiciary: Revisiting the Implications of the FACE Act
- House Oversight and Accountability: “Overdue Oversight of the Capital City: Part II”
- House Ways and Means: “Overdue Oversight of the Capital City: Part II”
- House Energy and Commerce: Subcommittee on Energy, Climate, and Grid Security Markup
- House Intelligence Hearing: Full Committee Hearing on Security Clearance Reform (CLOSED)
- Senate Appropriations: Closed hearings to examine proposed budget estimates and justification for fiscal year 2024 for hypersonic threats, missile defense, and the protection of the U.S homeland.
- Senate Finance: Hearings to examine House Republican supplemental IRS funding cuts, focusing on the impact on Federal law enforcement and the Federal deficit.
- Senate Homeland Security: Hearings to examine artificial intelligence in government.
- Senate Banking: Hearings to examine the failures of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank.
- Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation: Hearings to examine the President’s proposed budget request for fiscal year 2024 for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
- Senate Judiciary Committee: An oversight hearing to examine A.I., focusing on rules for artificial intelligence.
- Senate Foreign Relations: Hearings to examine U.S. policy towards Russia.
- House Agriculture: “To Review the National Forest System: Supporting Forest Health and Confronting the Wildfire Crisis”
- House Education and Workforce: “Examining the Policies and Priorities of the Department of Education”
- House Veterans’ Affairs: Reviewing VA’s Implementation of the PACT Act
- House Natural Resources: Oversight hearing titled “Examining the Challenges Facing Forest Management, Wildfire Suppression, and Wildland Firefighters Ahead of the 2023 Wildfire Year.”
- House Judiciary: Hearing on Compliance with Committee Oversight
- House Energy and Commerce: Protecting Critical Infrastructure from Cyberattacks: Examining Expertise of Sector Specific Agencies
- Senate Appropriations: Hearings to examine the President’s proposed budget request for fiscal year 2024, focusing on investing in U.S. security, competitiveness, and the path ahead for the U.S. China relationship.
- Senate Environment and Public Works: Hearings to examine perspectives on new and existing US Army Corps of Engineers authorities to respond to water management issues including drought and water conservation.
- Senate Finance: Hearings to examine economic cooperation for a stronger and more resilient Western Hemisphere.
- House Homeland Security: R.3286, H.R. 1501, H.R. 3224, H.R. 3208, H.R. 3254
- Senate Armed Services: Hearings to examine the role of Special Operations Forces in supporting the National Defense Strategy, including activities that contribute to long-term strategic competition with China and Russia.
- House Natural Resources: Con.Res. 34 (Rep. Stauber), Expressing disapproval of the withdrawal by the Secretary of the Interior of approximately 225,504 acres of National Forest System
- House Transportation and Infrastructure: The Impacts of FEMA’s Strategic Plan on Disaster Preparedness and Response
- House Agriculture: “A Review of Animal Agriculture Stakeholder Priorities”
- House Judiciary: Artificial Intelligence and Intellectual Property: Part I – Interoperability of AI and Copyright Law
- House Select Committee on the CCP: Committee Business Meeting
- House Energy and Commerce: Subcommittee on Health Markup (R.2679, H.R.2665, H.R.2559, H.R.2550, H.R.3262, H.R.3237, H.R.2544, H.R.1418, H.R.2666, H.R.2547, H.R.1613, H.R.3248)
- Senate HELP: Hearings to examine a crisis in mental health and substance use disorder care, focusing on closing gaps in access by bringing care and prevention to communities.
- Senate Budget: Hearings to examine how tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations drive the national debt.
- Senate Environment and Public Works: Hearings to examine Federal actions to improve project reviews for a cleaner and stronger economy.
- House Veterans’ Affairs: VHA Recruitment and Retention: Is Bureaucracy Holding Back a Quality Workforce?
- House Financial Services: The Current Mortgage Market: Undermining Housing Affordability with Politics
- House Oversight and Accountability: “Driving Bad Policy: Examining EPA’s Tailpipe Emissions Rules and the Realities of a Rapid Electric Vehicle Transition”
- House Ways and Means: Why Health Care is Unaffordable: Anticompetitive and Consolidated Markets
- Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs: Hearings to examine health care denials and delays in medicare advantage.
- Senate Banking: Hearings to examine strengthening accountability at the Federal Reserve, focusing on lessons and opportunities for reform.
- Joint Economic Committee: Hearings to examine how a U.S. default crisis harms American families and businesses.
- Senate Veterans’ Affairs: Hearings to examine the President’s proposed budget request for fiscal year 2024 and 2025 advance appropriations requests for the Department of Veterans Affairs.
- Senate Agriculture: Hearings to examine rural broadband, focusing on connecting our communities to the digital economy.
- House Select Committee on the CCP: “Leveling the Playing Field: How to Counter the CCP’s Economic Aggression”
- House Foreign Affairs: Standing United Against the People’s Republic of China’s Economic Aggression and Predatory Practices
- House Select Committee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government: Hearing on the Weaponization of the Federal Government
- House Financial Services: Putting the ‘Stable’ in ‘Stablecoins:’ How Legislation Will Help Stablecoins Achieve Their Promise
- House Appropriations Committee: Fiscal Year 2024 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Bill
- Senate Aging (Special) Meeting: Hearings to examine the strained nursing home inspection system and the need to improve oversight, transparency, and accountability.
- Senate Banking: An oversight hearing to examine financial regulators, focusing on financial stability, supervision, and consumer protection in the wake of recent bank failures.
- Senate Judiciary Committee: Business meeting to consider S.1080, to amend the Controlled Substances Act to require electronic communication service providers and remote computing services to report to the Attorney General
- Senate Finance Committee: Hearings to examine tax incentives in the Inflation Reduction Act, focusing on jobs and investment in energy communities.
- Senate Foreign Relations: Hearings to examine U.S. policy towards the Western Balkans.