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Federal Relations


February 9, 2017

Attorney General Nominee Confirmed

After a very contentious debate on the Senate floor, the chamber voted to confirm Wednesday evening Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) as the next Attorney General of the United States by a vote of 52-47. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) was the only Democrat to vote in favor of Sessions. Senator Sessions abstained from voting for himself….

January 25, 2017

Senate Appropriations Subcommittee Leadership for 115th

This week the Senate Appropriations Committee finalized its subcommittee rosters and leadership. Senator Patty Murray will serve as Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education in addition to serving on the Subcommittees for Defense; Energy and Water Development; Homeland Security; Military Construction and Veterans’ Affairs; and Transportation, Housing and…

January 19, 2017

Collins to Stay on at NIH

As previously reported, the Trump Administration has asked approximately 50 members of the current Obama Administration NIH indicated today that the resignation letter that NIH Director Francis Collins, M.D., Ph.D., submitted to the incoming Administration has been returned, and he is being held over into the next administration. At this point, President-elect Trump’s transition team…

January 12, 2017

Flake Issues Annual “Waste Book”

Earlier this week, Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) released his annual “waste book,” a list of 50 examples of federal spending which he believes are wasteful. As in the past, this year’s list includes plenty of activities supported by research agencies. The document is available here.

January 11, 2017

Confirmation Hearing Underway

Confirmation hearings for Cabinet nominees are now underway, with nominees for many of the high-profile posts appearing before the relevant Senate committees this week. Sen. Jeff Session (R-AL), the Attorney General nominee, started his two-day confirmation hearing on Tuesday, January. 10. Recordings of the hearing are available here and here.  Rex Tillerson, the Secretary of State nominee,…

January 5, 2017

More Details About Confirmation Hearings Now Available

More details about the upcoming confirmation hearings for Cabinet nominees are becoming available, including the dates and times of many of the hearings. On January 10, the Senate Judiciary Committee will start its two-day confirmation hearing for Attorney General nominee Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) at 9:30 AM ET. The hearing will be webcast on the…

January 4, 2017

Cabinet Confirmation Hearings Kick Off Week of Jan. 9

Although the new Trump Administration will not formally come into office until January 20, confirmation hearings for many of the Cabinet nominees will kick off the week of January 9. For example, Education Secretary nominee Betsy DeVos will go before the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee on at 10 AM EST on…

November 23, 2016

Trump Taps SC Gov. Nikki Haley for UN

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley has accepted Donald Trump’s offer to be his ambassador to the United Nations. She is the first woman Trump has tapped to his cabinet, and would add diversity as a woman and the daughter of immigrants from India. A rising star in the GOP, she is the first woman to…

November 17, 2016

NDAA Update: One Step Closer to Finalized

Yesterday, armed services leaders from the House and the Senate took a significant step forward in wrapping up the 2017 National Defense Authorization. While negotiations are still underway, committee leadership reportedly agreed upon adding around $9 billion to the Pentagon budget to fund wars and fill readiness shortfalls. Since the negotiations are highly sensitive, they…

November 10, 2016

115th Congress House Committee Outlook

In the 115th Congress, there will be twenty openings for committee and subcommittee chair positions in the House of Representatives due to the GOP’s self-imposed six year term limits on chairmanship. Here are a few of the committees we’re paying attention to. APPROPRIATIONS: The current chair of Appropriations, Hal Rogers, has reached his six year…

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