Extra Data: Michael DiMaria | Associate and SW Regional Director | 602-717-3891 | email@example.com
Thanks in your curiosity in Washington, and thanks for studying This Week in Washington.
That is the fourth anniversary of This Week, so “Heard on The Hill” is dedicated to a few of the new options you will notice this yr and thanking all those that have made this milestone attainable. Patrick Robertson covers early motion within the Senate in “Washington Whispers,”andAl Jackson supplies an replace on protection.
We might be again in two weeks for one more concern of This Week. Keep nicely.
Steve Gordon, Managing Associate
Complete Spectrum Highlight
Episode 5 – Rural Broadband
Heard on the Hill
By Steve Gordon, Complete Spectrum Managing Associate
A milestone – and an enormous thanks.
We began This Week in Washington precisely 4 years in the past with the aim of offering correct and insightful protection of the insurance policies and the politics of Washington, D.C. tailor-made to the needs and wishes of Arizona. Our aim after 4 years stays the identical, however I do know we all the time must adapt and develop.
This Week began adapting final yr. Our most vital structural change was creating Complete Spectrum Highlight, through which we spotlight newsmakers and information shapers and talk about vital matters briefly however significant interviews. We additionally expanded our group with Congressman Erik Paulsen, a former member of the Home Methods and Means Committee and a former Chairman of the Joint Financial Committee; and Patrick Robertson, who was the Assistant Chief of Workers to former Senator Jay Rockefeller and has excellent relationships with Senate and Home Democrats.
Erik co-wrote “Heard on the Hill” with me final yr. He’ll proceed contributing to my column, and he may also debut his personal column subsequent month. Patrick began writing “Washington Whispers” final yr, and the response was excellent. Look ahead to far more from Patrick in 2021.
We’ve got an amazing group of specialists who give attention to particular legislative areas. John McKechnie is a wealth of expertise within the banking-financial providers sector. Andy Ehrlich, a former Chief of Workers to Reps. Rick Lazio and Randy Tate, brings his experience in telecommunications, vitality/surroundings, and agriculture. Steve Ruhlen is our appropriations knowledgeable, having served as Deputy Assistant for Legislative Affairs for Vice President Cheney; and as Chief of Workers to each Congresswoman Kay Granger, then rating member of the Appropriations Committee, and to former Congressman Henry Bonilla, then a member of the Home Appropriations Committee and a subcommittee chairman. Todd Smith was Chief of Workers for Congressman and later Governor Nathan Deal, and has huge expertise in healthcare, meals and drug security, and environmental coverage. Michael DiMaria, our Southwest Regional Director and Jim Campbell, our Colorado Director, have been working in telecommunications and web points for years on the state and federal ranges. Al Jackson makes a speciality of nationwide safety, international affairs, homeland safety, and aviation.
I will proceed writing “Heard on the Hill” whereas additionally creating a number of ideas that may broaden our protection. Dana Marston will proceed to function the editor of This Week, and Ramona Lessen supplies content material whereas additionally studying and proofing each phrase we publish.
Because of our nice companions on the Arizona Chamber, significantly Glenn Hamer and Erica Wrublik. Most significantly, because of you in your curiosity in Washington and for studying This Week in Washington.
By Patrick Robertson, Complete Spectrum Strategic Marketing consultant
The previous few weeks in Washington have seen rebellion, particular elections, an inauguration, an influence sharing settlement, and an impeachment. And now each political events must resolve transfer ahead and get again to governing.
This week Senate Republican Chief Mitch McConnell and Senate Democratic Chief Chuck Schumer hammered out a power-sharing settlement paving the best way for Senator Schumer’s ascension to the job of Majority Chief, setting the agenda within the Senate. Chief Schumer’s first orders of enterprise are (1) confirming President Biden’s nominees, (2) managing the impeachment trial of former President Trump, (3) spending some type of COVID reduction, after which (4) transferring on to a Democratic progress agenda.
The nominee confirmations have begun transferring and may proceed, though there’ll nearly actually be one or two who get hung up in a partisan battle – seemingly both California Legal professional Basic Xavier Becerra, nominated to be Secretary of Well being and Human Providers, or Workplace of Administration and Funds nominee Neera Tanden. Since quite a few cupboard nominees have been confirmed, consideration will quickly flip to impeachment, however first let’s look at the Senate make-up.
After Democrats swept the 2 particular elections in Georgia earlier this month, the Senate is break up evenly with 50 Republicans and 50 Democrats, two of whom establish as independents who caucus and most frequently vote with Democrats. The Vice President, on this case Democrat Kamala Harris, breaks ties within the Senate, giving Democrats the tiebreaking vote. Senators McConnell and Schumer have appeared to the 2001 precedent in organizing the Senate. Below the power-sharing settlement, committees had equal variety of members, though the Democrats will chair and set the agenda. Nominees and laws will be capable to be reported out of the committees on a tie vote as nicely, a rule that isn’t often in drive.
This power-sharing settlement, whereas giving Democrats management, doesn’t assure that Democratic priorities will go. Whereas they’ve the narrowest of majorities, the Democratic Caucus has a variety of political opinions from Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren to Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema. With the Senate filibuster guidelines nonetheless intact, at the least for now, Democrats might attempt to use an arcane process known as finances reconciliation, requiring solely 50 votes within the Senate, to try to go a few of their priorities, though there are important limitations to that process.
Funds reconciliation is a posh course of that permits the Senate to bypass the 60-vote threshold of the filibuster to go laws that has a direct impression on federal spending. It has historically been used as soon as per fiscal yr and has important limitations based mostly on the principles mandating that insurance policies spend or get monetary savings. It has solely been used when a celebration has slender management of the Senate, management of the Home, and management of the White Home.
Briefly, grand partisan insurance policies might very nicely give method to massive, bipartisan payments, however Democrats will seemingly attempt to transfer some priorities on a partisan foundation. Funds reconciliation has been used in recent times to go the Inexpensive Care Act, to aim to repeal it, and to go the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which formally misplaced its title to one thing known as The Byrd Rule. We’ll cowl the method in additional depth in a future installment, however Democrats might introduce their finances to arrange this course of within the subsequent few days.
Earlier than the Senate begins legislating it has two weeks to arrange and work on nominations earlier than the impeachment trial begins. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) compelled a vote on the constitutionality of impeaching a former president and the Senate agreed to maneuver ahead with 5 Republicans becoming a member of the 50 Democrats. After some authorized briefs, the impeachment trial will start in two weeks with most observers concluding that the Senate doesn’t have anyplace close to the 67 votes wanted to convict former President Trump.
As soon as that’s resolved the Senate will flip again to legislating with President Biden having already despatched a $1.9 trillion coronavirus reduction plan to Congress. Standard knowledge is that there is usually a smaller bipartisan compromise invoice that may get 60 votes or Democrats can use finances reconciliation to get the entire thing by way of, burning one in every of their restricted alternatives to make use of that particular course of. President Biden’s unity message might quickly run into political actuality when he should resolve which path to take.
As soon as the brand new Congress and Administration navigate these very rocky shoals, they are going to be dealing with many much more sophisticated questions. They should resolve go the bipartisan precedence of infrastructure spending, shut out the pandemic, fund the federal government, take care of the debt restrict expiration on July 31, reform the immigration system, work on well being care, and lots of extra points.
The work of those first few weeks will bleed into the primary 100 days and earlier than we all know it, we might be staring on the midterm elections in 2022… after one other spherical of Congressional redistricting. We might be right here right through – watching, reporting, and deciphering.
By Al Jackson, Strategic Marketing consultant to Complete Spectrum
By a vote of 93-2, former U.S. Central Command chief Lloyd Austin was confirmed Friday as the following head of the Division of Protection, an historic vote that makes him the nation’s first Black individual to carry that put up. Lloyd Austin, a four-star Military common, served greater than 40 years. Earlier than the vote, each the Home and Senate authorized waiver language permitting Austin, who retired in 2016, to serve within the put up regardless of a regulation mandating a seven-year hole between navy service and the highest civilian put up on the Pentagon. Comparable lodging have been additionally made for former Marine Corps Basic James Mattis within the Trump administration. After leaving the Military, Basic Austin served on the Board of Administrators for Raytheon Applied sciences. Austin confirmed throughout his affirmation listening to that he would recuse himself from choices involving Raytheon for at the least 4 years.
Two points excessive on the agenda of Basic Austin embody the navy’s continued drawback with sexual misconduct and the notion that the armed providers should be regularly aware of variety. Basic Austin indicated throughout his affirmation listening to, “…the navy can’t accomplish its missions if we additionally must battle enemies throughout the ranks.” Austin issued a memorandum directing Pentagon senior leaders, combatant commanders, and protection company and DoD area exercise administrators to boost efforts to take care of the problem of sexual misconduct.
President Joe Biden has ordered a 90-day fee to “pursue options to sexual assault within the navy.” Austin, in response to the introduction of the fee, mentioned “that whereas the division will aggressively assist that effort… I don’t wish to wait 90 days to take motion.” Basic Austin ordered senior leaders to report back to him by Feb. 5, 2021 “a abstract of the sexual assault harassment and accountability measures taken previously yr that present promise, in addition to a frank, data-driven evaluation of these which don’t.” The Undersecretary of Protection for Personnel and Readiness will consolidate the findings and make the report back to the Secretary of Protection.
Joe Biden, previous to being elected president, didn’t foresee main reductions within the U.S. protection finances because the navy refocuses its consideration to potential threats from world powers corresponding to China and Russia. The problem of assembly this goal will come from the progressive wing of the Democratic Get together, which is looking for drastic reductions in protection spending, thereby weakening the strides made by the earlier administration to strengthen the navy. The progressive wing of the Democratic Get together is concentrated totally on combating local weather change by way of the Inexperienced New Deal and extra spending on home giveaway packages. Mix this notion with pandemic-related financial pressures and it could finally add as much as finances cuts on the Pentagon.
As highlighted in his affirmation listening to and amongst different Members of Congress, Basic Austin just isn’t solely seen as a succesful chief but in addition an vital advocate for variety among the many armed forces. One concern of concern is the idea within the Biden administration that political extremists together with white nationalists and supremacists exist throughout the navy. Basic Austin addressed this concern throughout his affirmation listening to. Throughout his listening to, twelve of the greater than 25,000 Nationwide Guard troops stationed in Washington, D.C. for the inauguration have been despatched dwelling as a result of they have been suspected of attainable hyperlinks to right-wing/pro-second modification militias.
In his written remarks submitted as a part of his nomination listening to, Basic Austin mentioned, “We additionally owe our folks a working surroundings freed from discrimination, hate and harassment. If confirmed, I’ll combat onerous to stamp out sexual assault, to rid our ranks of racists and extremists, and to create a local weather the place everybody match and keen has the chance to serve this nation with dignity. The job of the Division of Protection is to maintain America protected from our enemies. However we will’t try this if a few of these enemies lie inside our personal ranks.”
President Joe Biden issued an government order reversing the coverage of the Trump administration banning transgender people from becoming a member of the navy. Basic Austin, throughout his affirmation listening to, spoke in favor of reversing the coverage as nicely.
President Biden additionally signed an government order reversing President Trump’s order to limit variety coaching, formally often known as “essential race concept,” within the federal authorities. The preliminary order from President Trump mandated that each one federal businesses stop from conducting any coaching that included “divisive” matters and submit all variety coaching packages to the Workplace of Personnel Administration for overview and approval. Federal contractors would even have been prohibited from utilizing such coaching packages for his or her staff. The coaching focuses on white privilege and race concept that has the potential of defining people based mostly on their race versus the content material of their character. It accepts the narrative that America is inherently racist, which continues to be a divisive subject.
There stays greater than 20,000 members of the Nationwide Guard in Washington, D.C. on the time of this report, however that quantity is anticipated to cut back to five,000 troops, then seemingly stay regular by way of mid-March. The Senate trial of the impeachment of President Trump, set to start February 8, is the explanation for the continued presence. This would be the first impeachment trial of a former U.S. president.
Actions Biden took throughout his first day in workplace
Biden’s government actions to sort out Covid-19
Marijuana developments throughout Trump’s presidency
Listening to Report
By Ramona Lessen, Government Director, Complete Spectrum
Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee Listening to on the presidential nomination of Gina Raimondo to be Secretary of the Division of Commerce
Tuesday, January 26, 2021; 10:00 a.m.
To view a livestream of the listening to please click here.
The Honorable Gina Raimondo
Governor of Rhode Island
Transcripts of opening remarks by Chairman Roger Wicker (R-MS) and Rating Member Maria Cantwell (D-WA).
Monday, January 25
- 6:00 p.m. The Senate Overseas Relations Committee holds a vote on the nomination of Antony Blinken to be Secretary of State.
Tuesday, January 26
- 10 a.m. The Senate Overseas Relations Committee holds a markup of pending enterprise.
- 10 a.m. The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee holds a hearing on the nomination of Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo to be Commerce Secretary.
- 11 a.m. The Senate Homeland Safety and Governmental Affairs Committee holds a markup to vote on the nomination of Alejandro Mayorkas to be Homeland Safety Secretary.
Wednesday, January 27
- 9:30 a.m. The Senate Vitality and Pure Sources Committee holds a hearing on the nomination of former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm to be the Vitality Secretary.
- 10 a.m. The Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee will maintain an executive session.
- 10 a.m The Senate Overseas Relations Committee holds a hearing on the nomination Linda Thomas-Greenfield to be the Consultant to the United Nations.
- 3 p.m. The Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee holds a hearing on the nomination of Denis McDonough to be Veterans Affairs Secretary.
- 3 p.m. The Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee holds a business meeting re: Committee guidelines for the 117th Congress and a decision authorizing expenditures by the Committee for the 117th Congress.
Thursday, January 28
- 10 a.m. The Senate Banking, Housing and City Affairs Committee holds a remote hearing on the nominations of Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio) to be Housing and City Growth Secretary and Cecilia Rouse to be Chair of the Council of Financial Advisers.
This e-newsletter is produced by Complete Spectrum/Steve Gordon and Associates and the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Trade. The views expressed herein might embody subjective commentary and evaluation which can be the views of the editors and authors alone. Data on this e-newsletter is obtained from sources believed to be dependable, however that can not be assured as independently investigated or verified. Data on this e-newsletter just isn’t an endorsement, commercial, suggestion, or any kind of recommendation; political, authorized, monetary or in any other case. For questions in regards to the content material of this e-newsletter, please contact the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Trade.