Federal Relations

April 15, 2013

This Week in Congress

The Senate resumes its gun control debate this week, beginning today with the most substantive and contentious issue: a bipartisan proposal to require background checks of gun purchasers in commercial and Internet sales. It’s the start of deliberations that could keep that chamber busy until the Memorial Day recess. We also expect to see an

April 11, 2013

Summary of President’s FY14 Budget Request

Yesterday, President Obama released his FY14 budget request — nearly two months later than required by law. Much of the delay was blamed on the sequester and the prolonged FY13 appropriations process that resulted in a year-long continuing resolution (CR). In a typical year, the President’s Budget Request (PBR) kicks off the annual appropriations season,

April 10, 2013

FY14 Budget Release Today

President Obama will release his FY14 budget request today. Early reports indicate that the budget will focus on “education and infrastructure” issues, propose new taxes on the wealthy, and reduce the costs of Social Security and Medicare. We will report more details after the release.

March 23, 2013

Senate Approves Budget, Begins Two-Week Recess

Early this morning, the Senate passed its first budget in four years by a vote of 50 to 49 after a marathon session that began Friday morning and included 562 filed amendments. The Senate approved a budget resolution that relies heavily on $975 billion in new tax revenue to stabilize the growth of the national

February 12, 2013

Sequestration: The Bottom Line

While it may seem that the White House has been more focused gun control and immigration over the past several weeks, President Obama is expected to make the economy his central theme and renew his call to avoid sequestration when he delivers his State of the Union tonight. There are just 17 days until the

February 11, 2013

Another Short Term Sequestration Fix?

Senate Democrats plan to announce a short-term sequester replacement bill this week aimed at combining alternative spending cuts and new tax revenue to avert $85 billion in automatic spending reductions scheduled to begin taking effect March 1st. Republicans, who adamantly oppose any use of tax revenue to replace the sequester, are not part of the

February 5, 2013

Bill Introduced to Protect NIH from Sequestration

Today, Congressman Jim McDermott (D-WA) joined his colleagues to introduce a bill to stop the across-the-board budget cuts scheduled for March 1st with a balance of increased revenue and sensible investments. The Balancing Act will halt impending automatic federal budget cuts, known as “sequester,” which would threaten important national investments like those in medical research—a

Obama Calls for Balanced Approach to Deficit Reduction

Today President Obama called on lawmakers to quickly pass a package of limited spending cuts and tax changes that can head off the automatic, across-the-board reductions — or sequester — that are set to take effect on March 1st. Obama will acknowledge that a broader budget agreement is unlikely to be reached by next month’s

January 11, 2013

Tax Reform in 2013?

Tax reform has been discussed as a probable agenda item for Congress to tackle this year.  But with the recent deal to increase tax rates for higher earners and making certain tax breaks permanent, there now seems to be waning interest in a comprehensive rewrite of our nation’s tax system.  There are several reasons why:

January 4, 2013

White House White Board on Tax Deal

For those of you who love to “white board” ideas, this video is for you!  In this new White House White Board, Brian Deese, the Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, explains what the new agreement to extend tax cuts for the middle class means for the economy and how it meets our Nation’s

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