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Legislative Update

Senate. The Senate will, as always, consider nominations. Also on this week’s agenda is a vote to override President Biden’s veto of a resolution that would rescind the waiver that the Administration granted last year on “Buy America” requirements for electric vehicle chargers. The veto is expected to be upheld, with the vote falling short of the two-thirds majority needed for an override. A proposal that would address immigration and border policy could be unveiled in the coming days. The proposal is designed to be included in the supplemental spending bill for Israel, Ukraine, and Taiwan, but it is unclear whether the Senate will vote this week on that legislation.

House. Also unclear is how and when the full House will consider the tax package approved by the House Ways and Means Committee on Jan. 19. Even though the measure is on this week’s schedule, no further details have been provided. The measure is expected to be considered under suspension of the rules, which requires a two-thirds vote for approval, but Speaker Mike Johnson has not said yet how the House will proceed. Ways and Means Chairman Jason Smith (R-Mo.) will reportedly brief his fellow House Republicans tonight and tomorrow in an effort to drum up GOP support.

In addition to providing tax breaks to businesses, the tax bill would also expand the child tax credit (CTC). While the proposed changes won’t be in effect before the IRS tax filing season begins today, the legislation provides that the IRS can act on its own to provide CTC refunds to taxpayers if the law is changed after they file their returns. On Friday, IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel noted that “if there is a change to the law that means, for example, they would get an additional or an increased credit, we will handle that at the IRS.”

Spending Bills. Senate Appropriations Chair Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and House Appropriations Chair Kay Granger (R-Tex.) reached an agreement Friday on the spending amounts that the Appropriations subcommittees will use to draft the 12 spending bills for FY 2024. The allotments, known as the 302(b)s, were not released and aren’t expected to be publicly known until the bills are finalized.

Committee Action of Note

Tuesday, January 30

  • House Select Committee on the Strategic Competition Between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party Hearing: “Authoritarian Alignment: The CCP’s Support for America’s Adversaries”
  • House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Hearing: “Menace on the Red Sea: Securing Shipping Against Threats in the Red Sea”
  • House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Limited Government Hearing: “The Southern Border Crisis: The Constitution and the States”
  • House Veterans’ Affairs Committee Hearing: “The One Percent: Supporting America’s Surviving Military Family Community”
  • House Administration Committee Meeting: “Artificial Intelligence (AI): Innovations Within the Legislative Branch”
  • House Financial Services Committee Hearing: “Better Investment Barriers: Strengthening CCP Sanctions and Exploring Alternatives to Bureaucratic Regimes”

Wednesday, January 31

  • Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Subcommittee on Housing, Transportation, and Community Development Hearing: “Artificial Intelligence and Housing: Exploring Promise and Peril”
  • Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Hearing: “Avoiding, Detecting, and Capturing Methane Emissions from Landfills”
  • Senate Budget Committee Hearing: “A Blueprint for Prosperity: Expanding Housing Affordability”
  • Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Markup on various legislation, including:
    • S. 3558, to prohibit contracting with certain biotechnology providers
    • S. 2367, to improve border security through regular assessments and evaluations of the Checkpoint Program Management Office and effective training of U.S. Border Patrol agents regarding drug seizures
    • The “Government Spending Oversight Act”
  • Senate Finance Committee Hearing to consider pending nominations, including Corey Tellez to be Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Legislative Affairs
  • House Financial Services Committee Hearing: “Rules Without Analysis: Federal Banking Proposals Under the Biden Administration”
  • House Energy and Commerce Committee Hearing: “Healthcare Spending in the United States: Unsustainable for Patients, Employers and Taxpayers”

Thursday, February 1

  • Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee Hearing: “Examining Scams and Fraud in the Banking System and Their Impact on Consumers”

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