CUNA Legislative Update 
October 7, 2013

Good morning! With the government shutdown entering its second week and the deadline for raising the debt ceiling to avoid default about ten days away, Congress remains is Washington. The House will consider a series of small, targeted appropriations bills to fund various agencies and government programs. The Senate has not indicated how they will act on these bills. It is possible that additional legislative business could be added to the schedule this week, but nothing has been announced at this time.

Committee Meetings

We are following several committee meetings on both sides of the Capitol, including the following:

READ MORE (members only)

 

CUNA Legislative Update 
September 30, 2013

It’s new fiscal year’s eve here in Washington, but don’t expect to find any big parties. The House and the Senate remain in stalemate over the funding resolution for the first few months of fiscal year 2014. Over the weekend, the House sent the Senate another continuing resolution (CR) funding the government until December 15 and postponing the Affordable Care Act for one year. The Senate stayed in recess throughout the weekend and will reconvene at 2pm. When the upper chamber reconvenes this afternoon, it is expected to quickly amend the House-passed CR, replacing it with a “clean” CR, funding the government through November 15, and to send the amended legislation back to the House. This will leave the House leadership with a decision to make about how to move forward. Funding for most of the government expires at midnight.

Except for a handful of suspension bills that the House will consider today, no legislative business related to matters other than the CR has been announced in either chamber for this week. It would be reasonable to assume that both chambers will stay at this until they figure it out. However, as the clock winds down on the fiscal year and shutdown seems more certain, the clock is also ticking down on the debt ceiling. Last week, Treasury Secretary Lew notified Congress that the government will reach the debt ceiling no later than October 17. So, if you’re fan of government operating in crisis mode, this is your time; if you’re like the rest of us, hold on tight. It could get a little bumpy.

Impact of the Shutdown

Since it has been nearly 20 years since the last significant government shutdown, there are understandably a number of questions about what will happen and how it will affect us. For those of you coming to Washington this week for Hike the Hill or other meetings, my advice to you is this: check with the Congressional offices with which you’re meeting today to see what they’re going to do about meetings for the remainder of the week. Congressional staff deemed “essential” will continue to work throughout the shutdown, but others will not. Each office is going to handle this differently, so touch base today before the shutdown when all staff should be there.


READ MORE (members only)
 

CUNA Legislative Update
September 23, 2013
Although the House of Representatives was scheduled to have a recess this week, both chambers will be in session to consider a funding resolution for the first part of the next fiscal year and continue negotiations over the debt ceiling.

Floor Schedule
The Senate reconvened at 2:00 pm on Monday to consider the nomination of Todd M. Hughes to be United States Circuit Judge for the Federal Circuit.  For the remainder of the week, the Senate is considering the House passed continuing resolution.  The Senate is likely to remove the language in the House-passed CR and insert new bill text and send it back to the House, probably at the end of the week.  A continuing resolution must be enacted before October 1 to avoid a shutdown of the federal government. 

READ MORE
 
CUNA Legislative Update 
September 16, 2013


Both the House and the Senate are in session this week as the end of the fiscal year and debt ceiling loom large. In fact, the House leadership warned lawmakers last week that next week’s scheduled recess may be in jeopardy if progress is not made on the appropriations front. We expect an announcement of next week’s House schedule later this week; conventional wisdom is that the House will be in session. But before we can get to next week, we have to get through this week...


Read More (members only)
 
CUNA Legislative Update 
September 9, 2013

Good morning!  August recess is over and Congress is back in Washington for the September work period.  While Congress will only be in session for a handful of days in September, this work period will be highlighted by consideration of a use of force resolutions regarding Syria and continuing appropriations resolutions to fund the government into the new fiscal year which begins on October 1.  Also during this work period, we expect progress to be made behind the scenes to help set up action later this year on housing finance reform and tax reform.

READ MORE
 
The August district work period has officially begun.  The House and the Senate will be out of session until the week of September 9th.  When they return, there will be fewer than ten legislative days until the end of the fiscal year.  The big picture focus for the remainder of the year will be on appropriations, sequestration, the debt ceiling, immigration reform, and tax reform.  We also expect action later this year on housing finance reform on the House floor and perhaps in the Senate Banking Committee. 

A Note about August “Recess”…
Although the August Recess is often viewed as a vacation for lawmakers, the reality is often far removed from this perception.  To this point, we bring to your attention two recent articles from the Washington Post that describe what this period of time is like for elected officials and the importance of the district work period for advocacy groups. 

Last month in his Wonk Blog , Ezra Klein describes the competing demands on members’ schedules and the importance of the work they do when they return home to hear from their constituents.  It’s actually a pretty interesting look into how Members spend their time in Washington and at home.   READ MORE
 
Picture
CUNA Legislative Update 
July 29, 2013The House and the Senate return to Washington for the last week of session before the August district work period.  Unlike the past few years when Congress was facing a debt ceiling or other crisis, the last week of this work period is expected to be rather routine.

Floor Schedule
The Senate returned on Monday to resume consideration of the “Transportation, Housing and Urban Development and Related Agencies Appropriations bill” (S.1243).  Later this week, the Senate is also expected to vote on the nominations of:
  • James B. Comey, Jr. to be Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigations
  • Kent Yoshiho Hirozawa to be a Member of the National Labor Relations Board
  • Nancy Jean Schiffer to be a Member of the National Labor Relations Board
  • Mark Gaston Pearce to be a Member of the National Labor Relations Board
READ MORE

 
As August approaches so does the Congressional recess.  We are in the process of scheduling meetings in district during August.  The Congressional offices have asked we keep groups small, as smaller groups lead to more in depth discussions.  We also find this to be true.  As dates are formed, we will reach out to CEOs to attend.
 
This week, both the House and the Senate are in session this week.

Floor Schedule
The House is expected to consider the Defense Appropriations bill, the Energy Consumers Relief Act of 2013 (H.R. 1582) and the Coal Residuals Reuse and Management Act of 2013 (H.R. 2218).  The Senate is expected to renew the motion to proceed to the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies Appropriations bill (S.1243). READ MORE
 
Picture
CUNA News in Washington DC
Both the House and the Senate are in session this week, and depending on how things work out, this week may end up being one of the more significant weeks in recent Senate history.  

Floor Schedule
Late last week, Senate Majority Leader Reid moved cloture on several nominations, including the nomination of Richard Cordray to be Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.  The Majority Leader also announced his intention to pursue a Senate rule change that would limit the filibuster opportunities for certain presidential nominations – this maneuver has been referred to as the “nuclear option” because the rule change would rely on an interpretation of the Constitutional powers of the Senate to set its own rules by majority vote, as opposed to the 2/3 requirement in the Senate standing rules.  During debate on this matter last week, many Senators expressed concern regarding the potential impact this course may have not only on nominations but also Senate tradition going forward.  Later this afternoon, the Senate will hold a rare bi-partisan caucus meeting in the Old Senate Chamber to discuss how to proceed on the issue of presidential nominations. 

In addition to the nomination of Director Cordray, the Senate is expected to vote this week on the nominations of: 

Log in to READ MORE