Look Ahead to the week of December 6, 2021

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Both the House and Senate will be in session this week.

Last week, the House and Senate passed a short-term spending bill to fund the government until February 18. However, they still have a laundry list of issues to address before the end of the year.

The Senate was unable to reach an agreement on H.R. 4350, the fiscal 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), last week and will now move instead to a compromise forged by leaders and the Armed Services Committees in both the House and Senate. House Armed Services Chair Adam Smith (D-WA) has stated that he hopes the brokered bill could be finished and ready to print on Monday, with a House vote later in the week.

Congressional leaders may also act this week to avert a debt limit crisis. The deadline to raise or suspend the debt ceiling could be as early as December 15, according to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. The Bipartisan Policy Center projected it could arrive as soon as December 21 or as late as January 28, depending on the flow of federal outlays and revenues. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) have held a series of closed-door discussions over the last two weeks on possible ways to meet that deadline, although no agreement has been reached. 

Further, the Senate will continue internal discussions on consideration of the Build Back Better Act, the Democrats’ $1.75 trillion tax and spending  package. The chamber plans to continue the behind-the-scenes “Byrd Bath” interactions with the parliamentarian about what policies must be excluded from the legislation due to the rules of the Senate. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) has also expressed concerns about certain contents of the bill and the overall economic impact, citing concerns about inflation. It is possible this legislation slips into early 2022. 

Administration

On Tuesday, President Biden will hold a call with Russian President Vladimir Putin to discuss escalating tensions with Ukraine.

Biden will then leave Wednesday for a multistate tour to discuss the benefits of the bipartisan infrastructure law.

House Side

On Tuesday, the House will meet for legislative business to consider multiple bills under suspension.

  • H.R. 5545 – REMOTE Act, as amended (Rep. Trone – Veterans’ Affairs)
  • H.R. 5746 – NASA Enhanced Use Leasing Extension Act of 2021 (Rep. Beyer – Science, Space, and Technology)
  • H.R. 4996 – Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2021, as amended (Rep. Garamendi – Transportation and Infrastructure)
  • H.R. 4616 – Adjustable Interest Rate (LIBOR) Act of 2021, as amended (Rep. Sherman – Financial Services)
  • H.R. 5290 – To extend authorization for livestock mandatory reporting (Rep. David Scott – Agriculture)
  • H.R. 5608 – Chronic Wasting Disease Research and Management Act (Rep. Kind – Agriculture)
  • H.R. 4489 – National Forest Restoration and Remediation Act (Rep. Schrier – Agriculture)
  • H.R. 5609 – Cattle Contract Library Act of 2021 (Rep. Dusty Johnson – Agriculture)
  • H.R. 3537 – Accelerating Access to Critical Therapies for ALS Act, as amended (Rep. Quigley – Energy and Commerce)
  • H.R. 5487 – SHINE for Autumn Act of 2021, as amended (Rep. Herrera Beutler – Energy and Commerce)
  • H.R. 5561 – Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Act of 2021, as amended (Rep. Guthrie – Energy and Commerce)
  • H.R. 5551 – Improving the Health of Children Act, as amended (Rep. Buddy Carter – Energy and Commerce)
  • H.R. 1193 – Cardiovascular Advances in Research and Opportunities Legacy Act, as amended (Rep. Barr – Energy and Commerce)
  • H.R. 1667 – Dr. Lorna Breen Health Care Provider Protection Act, as amended (Rep. Wild – Energy and Commerce)
  • H.R. 3320 – Allied Health Workforce Diversity Act of 2021, as amended (Rep. Rush – Energy and Commerce)
  • H.R. 4555 – Oral Health Literacy and Awareness Act of 2021 (Rep. Cardenas – Energy and Commerce)

Wednesday – Friday, the House will meet for legislative business and to consider additional bills under suspension.

  • Consideration of the FY22 National Defense Authorization Act
  • Possible consideration of legislation related to the debt limit
  • Possible consideration of legislation related to end-of-the-year health care provisions
  • Bills expected under a rule
    • H.R. 5314 – Protecting our Democracy Act (Rep. Schiff – Oversight and Reform). The legislation would establish additional presidential and Executive Branch ethics rules, Congress would reassert several authorities, and foreign election contacts would have to be reported.
  • Possible passage of postponed suspensions
    • H.R. 2355 – Opioid Prescription Verification Act of 2021, as amended (Rep. Rodney Davis – Energy and Commerce)
    • H.R. 2364 – Synthetic Opioid Danger Awareness Act, as amended (Rep. Andy Kim – Energy and Commerce)
    • H.R. 3743 – Supporting the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health and the Reagan-Udall Foundation for the Food and Drug Administration Act (Rep. Hudson – Energy and Commerce)
    • H.R. 3894 – CARING for Social Determinants Act of 2021, as amended (Rep. Blunt Rochester – Energy and Commerce)
    • H.R. 897 – Agua Caliente Land Exchange Fee to Trust Confirmation Act, as amended (Rep. Ruiz – Natural Resources)
    • H.R. 2074 – Indian Buffalo Management Act, as amended (Rep. Young – Natural Resources)
    • H.R. 3531 – Women Who Worked on the Home Front World War II Memorial Act, as amended (Rep. Norton – Natural Resources)
    • H.R. 4706 – Blackwell School National Historic Site Act (Rep. Tony Gonzales – Natural Resources)
    • H.R. 5677 – To make technical amendments to update statutory references to certain provisions classified to title 2, United States Code, title 50, United States Code, and title 52, United States Code (Rep. Dean – Judiciary)
    • H.R. 5679 – To make technical amendments to update statutory references to certain provisions classified to title 7, title 20, and title 43, United States Code (Rep. Jones – Judiciary)
    • H.R. 5695 – To make technical amendments to update statutory references to certain provisions which were formerly classified to chapters 14 and 19 of title 25, United States Code (Rep. Issa – Judiciary)
    • H.R. 5705 – To make technical amendments to update statutory references to provisions reclassified to title 34, United States Code (Rep. Bentz – Judiciary)
    • H.R. 5961 – To make revisions in title 5, United States Code, as necessary to keep the title current, and to make technical amendments to improve the United States Code (Rep. Neguse – Judiciary)
    • H.R. 5982 – To make revisions in title 51, United States Code, as necessary to keep the title current, and to make technical amendments to improve the United States Code (Rep. Fischbach – Judiciary)
Senate Side

On Monday, the Senate will vote on the motion to invoke cloture, or limit debate, on the nomination of Jessica Rosenworcel for another term at the Federal Communications Commission. 

Senate Majority Leader Schumer also took steps to set up procedural votes on the nominations of Deirdre Hamilton to be a member of the National Mediation Board and Chris Magnus to be commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection. 

The Senate may also vote on a resolution (S.J. Res. 29) that would block the vaccine-or-testing mandate for large employers issued by the Biden Administration using the Congressional Review Act. Only a simple majority would be needed for passage, which is expected after Sen. Manchin signaled support for the measure last week. However, it would likely not pass in the House and would face certain veto by the President.

[View source.]

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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