In This Issue:
Leading the Past Week; Legislative Branch; House of Representatives; Executive Branch; Miscellaneous; International; and Upcoming Hearings.
Excerpt from Last week Congress returned from its six week August recess, and the House promptly passed a a continuing resolution (“CR”) to fund the Government through March of 2013, by an overwhelming vote of 329-91. With Senate action expected on the CR this week and no clear path to passage on any other legislation, the House announced that it would adjourn by the end of this week until after the elections. The Senate is expected to announce a similar decision and so what was already anticipated to be a short 8 day legislative period in September will be truncated even further. In other news, as was widely anticipated following the dismal August jobs report, the Fed pinned its hopes on a “third times the charm” belief for our nation?s monetary policy with the announcement of a third round of quantitative easing. As was also anticipated, the news was praised by Democrats—who are hoping an economic boost will give them a needed bump for November elections—and outrage from Republicans, many of who were calling for Ben Bernanke?s head, while reiterating concerns about destabilization of the recovery and the threat of inflation. While the Fed is supposed to be above politics, it is clear that the economy and its continued weakness is a political issue that both parties are trying to use. However, with less than 55 days to go to the election, and with the Presidential race still certainly up for grabs, many in Washington are beginning to view the race through the analysis of famed political prognosticator Charlie Cook who said earlier this week, “if President Obama is reelected, it will be despite the economy and because of his campaign; if Mitt Romney wins, it will be because of the economy and despite his campaign.”
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