Window On Washington - This Week in the Nation's Capital - Vol. 1, Issue 33

by Clark Hill PLC



Continuing Resolution for an Additional Month or Two Becoming More Likely:  Key appropriators say lawmakers have discussed a continuing resolution that runs until early February despite previous reports that Congress expected to be able to reach an agreement on a spending deal before the December deadline. Lawmakers would need about a month to finish a full appropriations deal after they agree to top-line spending figures which would give Congress only another week or so to strike a deal on how high to raise spending caps likely increasing the need for a continuing resolution. (The Hill)

Next Disaster Supplemental Bill May Be Delayed: Senate Majority Whip Cornyn from Texas said this week that he was concerned that Congress might not pass a third supplemental spending bill in November as originally expected because there might not be enough time in the Congressional calendar. The White House is expecting to submit its request for the third aid package in mid-November. (Roll Call)

House Republicans Armed Services Committee Members Will Not Vote for a Spending Bill that Shortchanges Defense: In a private meeting, Republican Committee Members told Speaker Ryan that they would not vote for an appropriations bill that did not increase defense spending potentially putting the passage of a defense spending bill in jeopardy. Reports from the meeting said that the group wants $700 billion for defense programs while the recently passed budget resolution only includes $640 billion. (Clark Hill Insight)

Tax Reform

House Republicans Roll Out Tax Reform Proposals:  The Ways and Means Committee has also announced that they have scheduled a markup of the bill on Monday, November 6. (Ways and Means)

Republicans Launch into Sales Push for Tax Plan:  House Republicans have rolled out their long-awaited tax reform bill.  Now they have to sell it.  Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), a policy wonk and former House Ways and Means Committee chairman, joined fellow GOP leaders at a news conference Thursday to make the case that the legislation gives a windfall to the middle class. (The Hill)

Republican Tax Plan Has Big Advantages — But Also Real Problems:   While corporate interests are largely supportive and Republicans enjoy majorities in the House and Senate, the GOP still only holds narrow majorities and faces significant ideological divides within its own caucus. (CNBC)

House GOP Tax Plan Filled with Tough Tradeoffs:  The tax overhaul is Republicans’ top priority ahead of next year’s elections, and lawmakers are desperate for a victory after the Obamacare repeal failed.  House Republicans unveiled plans Thursday for a sweeping overhaul of the tax system calling for fundamental changes in business and individual taxes, including big cuts in rates and new breaks for families.  It also includes provisions sure to stoke controversy and fierce lobbying, including new limits on the popular mortgage interest deduction. (Politico)


NAMB Issues Policy Position on GSE Reform:  The nine-year-old federal conservatorship of the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) needs to come to an end sooner than later, according to a recently released policy position issued by the National Association of Mortgage Bankers (NAMB).  NAMB President Fred Kreger, CMC has authored an eight-point policy agenda to address the future of the GSEs and the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s regulatory control of these entities. (National Mortgage Professional)


House Passes Child Insurance Bill, Sends it to the Senate: The House passed legislation on Friday to reauthorize the Children’s Health Insurance Program and funding for Community Health Centers over objections from most Democrats on how the programs will be funded. The bill now advances to the Senate, which has yet to take up its own version that passed out of committee last month. (Washington Examiner)

House Voted to Repeal Controversial Medicare Cost-Cutting Board: Lawmakers voted 307-111 to abolish what is known as the Independent Payment Advisory Board created under ObamaCare. The board was tasked with coming up with Medicare cuts if spending rises above a certain threshold but has been criticized as outsourcing the work of Congress. The board was never staffed or utilized and was called a “death panel” during the health care debate. (The Hill)


Trump, GOP Senators: No DACA Deal in Spending Bill: President Trump and GOP senators agreed during a closed-door White House meeting that they would not include a fix for a key Obama-era program as part of an end-of-the-year spending bill. (The Hill)


Senate Confirms Multiple Energy Nominees: The Senate confirmed three Department of Energy nominees on Thursday: Mark Menezes to be undersecretary, Paul Dabbar to be undersecretary for science and Steven Winberg to be assistant secretary for fossil energy. The Senate also confirmed two new members, Republican Kevin McIntrye and Democrat Richard Glick, of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission filling the five-member board for the first time under President Trump. (The Hill)


EVs From Tesla and GM in Danger of Losing Their Tax Credits:   Electric vehicles have caught the eye of many American consumers. But it’s not only the cars’ green cred that seals the deal. Another big lure: a federal tax credit of up to $7,500 per vehicle. Now that lucrative incentive may be fading away for two reasons – the House Tax Reform proposal which proposes eliminating it, and the fact that unless amended, the two companies will eventually use up the maximum value of the tax credits allowed under current law. (Bloomberg)

Trump Administration Working to Update Driverless Vehicle Guidance:  The Trump administration is already in the process of updating its federal guidance for driverless vehicles, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said Thursday.  The Department of Transportation (DOT) unveiled a new framework in September designed to pave the way for autonomous vehicles and build upon efforts from the previous administration. (The Hill)

Executive Branch


Trump Repeals Consumer Arbitration Rule, Wins Banker Praise: Trump approved the resolution to repeal the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau rule, meant to prevent banks and credit card companies from blocking customers from joining class-action lawsuits against them, in a private Oval Office signing. (The Hill)


EPA Plans Coal-Country Hearing on Obama Climate Rule Repeal: The Environmental Protection Agency will hold a public hearing this month in West Virginia on its plan to repeal the Obama Administration’s climate change rule for power plants. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said picking West Virginia, a major coal-producing state, as the location for the hearing shows that the agency cares about the impact of the Clean Power Plan on coal-heavy areas. (The Hill)


White House Releases Opioid Commissions Report: The report includes over 50 recommendations related to all facets of the crisis. The recommendation most praised by experts is the expansion of medication-assisted treatment which has been endorsed by FDA Commissioner Gottlieb. Additionally, the report includes a recommendation that the FDA should reconsider how it approves medications with abuse potential. (The Washington Post)

CMS Releases Rule to Reduce Payments to Hospitals from a Discount Drug Program: Hospitals that participate in the 340B drug discount program currently receive 6% on top of the drug's average sales price. Starting next year, they will get the average sales price minus 22.5%. That will result in $1.6 billion in cut payments to hospitals. In response, hospital lobbying groups have announced that they will sue CMS as the changes to program do not follow the intent of Congress. (Axios)

NIH Announced a New Initiative Aimed to Improve Knowledge of Pregnancy: The project, PregSource, will collect data directly from pregnant women and will explore the physical and emotional aspects of pregnancy, labor and delivery and will identify distinct challenges faced by certain subgroups of women. (NIH Press Release)


DOJ Issued California Another Warning Over Its Sanctuary State Status: Department of Justice Officials warned that if California does not resolve the situation it could result in future federal grants being withheld from California or the DOJ could “clawback” funds already awarded to the State. (Fox News)

DOJ Exploring Possibly Blocking the AT&T and Time Warner Merger: The US Department of Justice is looking into how it would build a case against the acquisition in federal court, if it comes to that, however the regulatory agency is just as likely to reach a settlement with the companies that would let the deal go forward without running afoul of antitrust law. (CNET)


U.S. Trade Panel Set to Recommend Solar Trade Tariffs: Federal trade officials on Tuesday will recommend measures to safeguard struggling domestic solar panel manufacturers against cheap imports in a closely watched case that could have a major impact on the price of U.S. solar power. (Reuters)


Labor Department Appeals Overtime Ruling:  The Department of Labor is appealing the Aug. 31 ruling by a federal judge that struck down the Obama Administration’s overtime rule. The DOL also said that once its appeal is docketed with the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans, the Department of Justice will file a motion with the court to hold the appeal in abeyance while Labor “undertakes further rule-making to determine what the salary level should be.”  The DOL in July called for public comments on the rule amid expectation it would issue a new rule with a lower salary threshold.  The overtime rule proposed by the Obama administration would have increased the threshold for overtime-exempt employees to $913 a week, or $47,476 annually for a full-time employee, from the current $455 a week, or $23,660 annually. (Business Insurance)


Contentious Bridenstine Nomination Hearing Splits Along Party Lines:  Democratic Senators questioned his credentials and viewpoints about climate change, sexual harassment and other issues that could affect how he runs the agency and its personnel.  Republicans defended him and chafed at the tenor of the hearing.  The committee could vote as early as next week on whether to send the nomination to the full Senate. (Space Policy Online)

NASA Selects Studies for Gateway Power and Propulsion Element:  NASA has selected five U.S. companies to conduct four-month studies for a power and propulsion element that could be used as part of the deep space gateway concept.  These latest studies will help provide data on commercial capabilities as NASA defines objectives and requirements as well as help reduce risk for a new powerful and efficient solar electric propulsion (SEP) technology in deep space. (Space Ref)


Border-Wall Bidders Plead for Trump's Help to Fend Off Opponents: Construction companies worried about a backlash for working on President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall are pushing for federal protections, including stopping cities and states from penalizing them, as a new battle erupts over his crackdown on illegal immigration. (Bloomberg)

Russian Investigation

Manafort, Gates Plead Not Guilty to Charges in Mueller Probe:  President Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort on Monday afternoon pleaded not guilty to all charges from special counsel Robert Mueller, who is conducting an investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia. (The Hill)

White House

Trump Seeks To End Diversity Visa Lottery Program: President Trump on Wednesday called for an end to the diversity visa lottery program, which was used by the man suspected of carrying out this week’s terrorist attack in New York City, and again pushed for a merit-based immigration system. (Law 360)

Trump picks Jerome Powell to succeed Yellen as Fed Chair:  President Trump nominated Jerome Powell to run the Federal Reserve once current Chair Janet Yellen's term expires, in a move widely expected and one unlikely to disturb the roaring stock market.  The move follows an extended period of speculation over who would be named to head the central bank, whose aggressive policies have been considered central to a climate of low interest rates, surging job creation and booming asset prices. (CNBC)

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.

© Clark Hill PLC | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Clark Hill PLC

Clark Hill PLC on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
Sign up using*

Already signed up? Log in here

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
Privacy Policy (Updated: October 8, 2015):

JD Supra provides users with access to its legal industry publishing services (the "Service") through its website (the "Website") as well as through other sources. Our policies with regard to data collection and use of personal information of users of the Service, regardless of the manner in which users access the Service, and visitors to the Website are set forth in this statement ("Policy"). By using the Service, you signify your acceptance of this Policy.

Information Collection and Use by JD Supra

JD Supra collects users' names, companies, titles, e-mail address and industry. JD Supra also tracks the pages that users visit, logs IP addresses and aggregates non-personally identifiable user data and browser type. This data is gathered using cookies and other technologies.

The information and data collected is used to authenticate users and to send notifications relating to the Service, including email alerts to which users have subscribed; to manage the Service and Website, to improve the Service and to customize the user's experience. This information is also provided to the authors of the content to give them insight into their readership and help them to improve their content, so that it is most useful for our users.

JD Supra does not sell, rent or otherwise provide your details to third parties, other than to the authors of the content on JD Supra.

If you prefer not to enable cookies, you may change your browser settings to disable cookies; however, please note that rejecting cookies while visiting the Website may result in certain parts of the Website not operating correctly or as efficiently as if cookies were allowed.

Email Choice/Opt-out

Users who opt in to receive emails may choose to no longer receive e-mail updates and newsletters by selecting the "opt-out of future email" option in the email they receive from JD Supra or in their JD Supra account management screen.


JD Supra takes reasonable precautions to insure that user information is kept private. We restrict access to user information to those individuals who reasonably need access to perform their job functions, such as our third party email service, customer service personnel and technical staff. However, please note that no method of transmitting or storing data is completely secure and we cannot guarantee the security of user information. Unauthorized entry or use, hardware or software failure, and other factors may compromise the security of user information at any time.

If you have reason to believe that your interaction with us is no longer secure, you must immediately notify us of the problem by contacting us at In the unlikely event that we believe that the security of your user information in our possession or control may have been compromised, we may seek to notify you of that development and, if so, will endeavor to do so as promptly as practicable under the circumstances.

Sharing and Disclosure of Information JD Supra Collects

Except as otherwise described in this privacy statement, JD Supra will not disclose personal information to any third party unless we believe that disclosure is necessary to: (1) comply with applicable laws; (2) respond to governmental inquiries or requests; (3) comply with valid legal process; (4) protect the rights, privacy, safety or property of JD Supra, users of the Service, Website visitors or the public; (5) permit us to pursue available remedies or limit the damages that we may sustain; and (6) enforce our Terms & Conditions of Use.

In the event there is a change in the corporate structure of JD Supra such as, but not limited to, merger, consolidation, sale, liquidation or transfer of substantial assets, JD Supra may, in its sole discretion, transfer, sell or assign information collected on and through the Service to one or more affiliated or unaffiliated third parties.

Links to Other Websites

This Website and the Service may contain links to other websites. The operator of such other websites may collect information about you, including through cookies or other technologies. If you are using the Service through the Website and link to another site, you will leave the Website and this Policy will not apply to your use of and activity on those other sites. We encourage you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privacy policies. We shall have no responsibility or liability for your visitation to, and the data collection and use practices of, such other sites. This Policy applies solely to the information collected in connection with your use of this Website and does not apply to any practices conducted offline or in connection with any other websites.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to change this Policy at any time. Please refer to the date at the top of this page to determine when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to our privacy policy will become effective upon posting of the revised policy on the Website. By continuing to use the Service or Website following such changes, you will be deemed to have agreed to such changes. If you do not agree with the terms of this Policy, as it may be amended from time to time, in whole or part, please do not continue using the Service or the Website.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of this site, your dealings with this Web site, or if you would like to change any of the information you have provided to us, please contact us at:

- hide
*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.