Senate Democrats Trigger ‘Nuclear Option’ – Eliminating Most Filibusters on Nominees

In a move that is sure to increase partisan tension, Senate Democrats made a historic move today and eliminated filibusters for most presidential nominations – severely limiting political leverage for the Republican party. The change applies to all executive and judicial branch nominations with the exception of the Supreme Court and means that confirmation is… Read More


This Week in Congress

Below is an overview of relevant House and Senate committee hearings and markups on the schedule this week. WEDNESDAY, November 13th House Education and the Workforce Federal Student Aid 10am, 2175 Rayburn Full Committee Hearing Joint Economic Fiscal 2014 Budget 10am, 1100 Longworth Conference Committee Meeting THURSDAY, November 14th Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions… Read More


Senate Commerce Committee announces COMPETES Hearing

Senator Rockefeller, Chairman of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, announced a hearing on America COMPETES today. The hearing will be November 6th at 2:30 pm EST. Those interested can watch the hearing live.


Budget Conference Committee Meets Today

Formal budget negotiations begin today with Democrats pushing for a multibillion-dollar job creation package aimed at speeding up economic growth. That will be in contrast with Republicans who want to maintain spending cuts under sequestration that will keep government operations running at reduced levels through the rest of FY2014. One thing that leaders in both… Read More


House Science Chair: Science vs. Entitlements

House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith, R-TX, published an op-ed in Politico today. In it, he asserts that federal budget is so taken up with entitlements that the nation’s investment in science is suffering and will continue to suffer as a result. Further, Chairman Smith argues that entitlement reform means more funding for basic science… Read More


Shutdown: Day 16 and Default Looming

Negotiations broke down (again) yesterday as the House GOP leadership failed to find enough support among their caucus to move forward two separate proposals to end the shutdown and raise the nation’s debt limit. All eyes are on the Senate as they resume negotiations. The tentative deal under discussion in the Senate would reopen the… Read More


Shutdown: Day 12 and Progress!

Congressional leaders continue to work toward reopening government and extend the debt limit before the October 27th deadline. While details are vague, it appears that the proposal would immediately end the shutdown and fund federal agencies for six months at current spending levels. It would maintain the automatic cuts, or sequester, but give agency officials… Read More


Shutdown: Day Eleven Brings a Glimmer of Hope

Negotiations to end the government shutdown and raise the debt limit continued into the night Thursday after House Republicans and President Obama failed to reach an agreement on ending the fiscal standoff during a White House meeting earlier in the day. The GOP favors a temporary increase in the debt ceiling through November 22nd but… Read More


Shutdown: Day Ten

Lawmakers made no visible progress Wednesday on a stopgap spending bill to reopen federal government with the Senate once again rejecting piecemeal funding bills favored by the House. The funding impasse has kept the government shut down since the new federal fiscal year began October 1st. The focus today is on a White House meeting… Read More


Shutdown: One-Week Anniversary and Nothing to Celebrate

There is no new progress on Capitol Hill to end the week old government shutdown. Instead of the usual update, I thought you might enjoy reading what we’re reading. The following articles provide some insights into possible paths forward and the impacts of the shutdown outside the beltway. On Capitol Hill House Republicans Unlikely to… Read More