In This Issue:
Leading the Past Week; Legislative Branch; Executive Branch; International; Miscellaneous; and Upcoming Hearings.
Excerpt from Leading the Past Week -
Before leaving for the Christmas recess the House of Representatives passed the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013 by an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 332 to 94. With the Senate expected to follow suit early next week, it will mean that for the first time since 1997, Congress will have voted to approve a budget bill. This achievement, which required some pain from both sides, is offered up by some as akin to the baby steps necessary to help repair a broken relationship, and potentially helping to bridge a path towards tax reform. However, these perspectives may be too optimistic, especially with a calendar next year that quickly tees up votes on an omnibus appropriations bill to keep the government open, and to increase the debt ceiling, both of which have the distinct ability to suck the life out of whatever reconciliation was achieved through the budget process.
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