Today on the Hill: House to Move on Cannabis Banking Bill

House lawmakers are expected to take up groundbreaking legislation under suspension of the rules today that would open up banking to cannabis companies. In a move aimed at getting the bill through the GOP-controlled Senate, House Democrats tacked on provisions to the Secure And Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act that would prevent a revival of the Obama-era program known as "Operation Choke Point," and clarify that institutions doing business with hemp companies will not face scrutiny under federal law. Also on the House floor, lawmakers will consider a bill that would restrict family separation policies and Customs and Border Protection transfer rules.

 

Today on the Hill: Senate Appropriators Begin Work on Three More Spending Bills

Senate appropriators will meet to consider another batch of fiscal year (FY) 2020 spending bills today. The measures for Interior-Environment, Commerce-Science-Justice (CJS), and Homeland Security will be marked up in their respective subcommittees today ahead of the full committee markup on Thursday. While the Interior-Environment and CJS measures are expected to pass with bipartisan support, the Homeland Security bill has already highlighted points of contention between both parties over funding for President Donald Trump’s border wall request and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention beds. The schisms over border security priorities are reminiscent of those that spurred a 35-day partial government shutdown earlier this year. 

 

This Week on the Hill: Senate Looks to Clinch Short-Term Funding Deal

Congress is set to close out the September legislative work session this week as Senators look to clinch a deal on a stopgap funding resolution. At some point later this week, the Senate is expected to take action on a continuing resolution (CR) that would punt the government funding deadline beyond Sept. 30. However, it remains to be seen if Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) will call up the House-passed CR or if the Senate offers its own version — leaving the fate of the dozens of policy riders that have been tacked on to the lower chamber’s bill up in the air. Off the floor, the Senate Appropriations Committee will meet to consider the fiscal year (FY) 2020 spending bills for Interior-Environment, Commerce-Science-Justice, and the Legislative Branch.

 

Financial Services Report (9/23)

This weeks marks the final leg of the three week spring that Congress has been in since returning from the August recess. If all goes according to plan the Senate should pass a short-term continuing resolution (CR) by the end of the week to punt the serious spending and budget questions until Thanksgiving.
 
In the House, proponents of the SAFE Act will see their bill come to the Floor. Interestingly, the measure is coming up under the Suspension Calendar, which while normally reserved for non-controversial legislation, can from time to time be used for other bills, though it requires a 2/3rds majority, rather than 218 votes for passage. With that in maind, it could come down to a handful of folks if this measure passes or fails – though often in these situations defeat is not fatal and the bill can come by under a rule requiring a simply 218 vote majority.
 
It is also an incredibly busy week in Committee, with both the House and the Senate holding hearings to examine the issue of Real Time Payments, while the House will have another five hearings on top of that, including a hearing featuring all five SEC Commissioners.

 

Health Policy Report (9/23)

The Week in Review

Lawmakers completed a busy week of legislative business that saw significant action on fiscal year (FY) 2020 appropriations priorities. In the House, lawmakers passed a continuing resolution (CR) (text; summary) that would punt the deadline to fund the federal government for fiscal year (FY 2020) until Nov. 21. The bill includes a host of policy riders designed to address pressing deadlines for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and numerous expiring health programs. Meanwhile, the Senate Appropriations Committee continued its work on FY 2020 spending bills, passing measures for Financial Services and General Government (FSGG), Transportation-Housing and Urban Development (T-HUD), and Agriculture.

 

Today on the Hill: House Strikes Deal on Stopgap Funding Measure

House lawmakers struck a deal yesterday on a continuing resolution (CR) (text; summary) that would punt the deadline to fund the federal government for fiscal year (FY 2020) until Nov. 21. The bill includes a host of policy riders designed to address pressing deadlines for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and numerous expiring health programs. As House lawmakers look to pass the stopgap funding resolution today, a timeline for Senate action — as well as the fate of the dozens of policy riders that have been tacked on — is unclear at this point.

 

Today on the Hill: House Readies Stopgap Funding Bill for Floor Time

House lawmakers will resume legislative business today as members eye action on government funding. The House Rules Committee is slated to meet later today to craft the rule that will govern debate for a continuing resolution (CR) that would fund the government through Nov. 21. Additional details on the House CR remain unclear, as lawmakers are still jostling for certain legislative priorities — including extensions for expiring Medicare and Medicaid programs, as well as increased funding for payments to farmers impacted by tariffs — to be tacked on to the bill.

 

This Week on the Hill: Lawmakers Eye Stopgap Funding Bill to Avert Sept. 30 Deadline

Congress will reconvene this week to continue work on several key funding priorities. As the Sept. 30 government funding deadline approaches, House Democrats are expected to queue up a continuing resolution (CR) for consideration as negotiators jostle to avoid another lapse in funding. The upper chamber is expected to take up the CR shortly thereafter, yet it remains to be seen whether the two sides can avoid disagreements over certain funding extensions, as well as how long the stopgap measure will fund the government. 

 

Health Policy Report (9/16)

The Week in Review

Lawmakers returned from the August recess last week, diving into a high-profile legislative blitz to clear pressing government funding deadlines. The push to fund the federal government through fiscal year (FY) 2020 got off to a rocky start, however, as the Senate Appropriations Committee postponed its scheduled markup of the Labor-HHS-Education bill amid partisan disagreements over policy riders. Democrats wanted to offer an amendment to the Labor-HHS-Education bill to bar the Trump administration from implementing its Title X family planning rule — a move that prompted Chairman Richard Shelby (R-AL) to delay consideration of the bill while both sides iron out their differences on controversial provisions. 

 

Next Week on the Hill: House Tees Up Stopgap Funding Resolution

Congress has wrapped up legislative business for the week and will reconvene next week to continue work on pressing government funding deadlines. As the Sept. 30 deadline approaches, House Democrats are expected to queue up a continuing resolution (CR) for consideration as negotiators jostle to avoid another lapse in funding. The upper chamber is expected to take up the CR shortly thereafter, yet it remains to be seen whether the two sides can avoid disagreements over certain funding extensions, as well as how long the stopgap measure will fund the government. Meanwhile, the Senate Appropriations Committee is slated to resume its work on FY 2020 spending bills next week, including the funding measures for Financial Services and General Government (FSGG), Transportation-Housing and Urban Development, and Military Construction-Veterans Affairs.