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Legislative / Policy Update

Senate. The Senate is in recess until July 20. When Senators return, they will resume consideration of two pieces of unfinished business – the nomination of Russ Vought to head the Office of Management and Budget and final votes on the National Defense Authorization Act.

House. There will be no House floor votes until the week of July 20, but various committees are holding hearings and markups this week and next. Last week, Democrats pushed through two pieces of legislation that the Senate has no intention of approving – a $1.5-trillion infrastructure bill (passed 233-188) and legislation to expand the Affordable Care Act (on a 234-179 vote).

FY 2021 Appropriations. House appropriators will be busy Monday through Wednesday marking up all 12 FY 2021 appropriations bills in subcommittee. Most amendments are expected to be considered at the full committee level rather than by the 12 subcommittees. On Thursday and Friday, full committee markups are scheduled for five of the bills. The remaining seven bills will be marked up the week of July 13.

PPP Extension. Under the rules set by the CARES Act for the Paycheck Protection Program, June 30 was the last day to apply for a PPP loan. However, on June 30, there was still slightly more than $130 billion left to lend and small businesses were still struggling. In a surprise move on June 30, the Senate gave unanimous consent to a request by Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), ranking member of the Small Business Committee, to extend the program until Aug. 8. That date was chosen, Cardin said, because the Senate plans to hold its last votes before the August recess on Aug. 7. The House quickly followed suit, passing the bill the next day by unanimous consent, and President Trump signed the legislation on July 4.

Committee Action of Note:

  • Monday, July 6
    • House Appropriations FY 2021 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
    • House Appropriations FY 2021 State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
    • House Appropriations FY 2021 Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
  • Tuesday, July 7
    • House Appropriations FY 2021 Homeland Security Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
    • House Appropriations FY 2021 Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
    • House Appropriations FY 2021 Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
    • House Appropriations FY 2021 Departments of Labor, HHS, Education, and Related Agencies Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
    • House Appropriations FY 2021 Legislative Branch Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
    • House Education and Labor Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Investment Hearing: “A Major Test: Examining the Impact of COVID-19 on the Future of Higher Education” (virtual).
    • House Financial Services Subcommittee on National Security, International Development, and Monetary Policy Hearing: “Paycheck Security: Economic Perspectives on Alternative Approaches to Protecting Workers’ Pay During COVID-19” (virtual).
    • House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, Energy and the Environment Hearing: Exposing and Demanding Accountability for Kremlin Crimes Abroad (virtual).
  • Wednesday, July 8
    • House Appropriations FY2021 Departments of Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
    • House Appropriations FY2021 Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
    • House Appropriations FY2021 Defense Subcommittee Markup (Closed - 2118 Rayburn).
    • House Appropriations FY2021 Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Subcommittee Markup (2118 Rayburn).
    • House Homeland Security Committee Hearing: Examining the National Response to the Worsening Coronavirus Pandemic (virtual).
    • House Financial Services Committee Task Force on Artificial Intelligence Hearing: “Exposure and Contact Tracing: How AI Helps Localities Reopen Safely and Researchers Find a Cure” (virtual).
    • House Budget Committee Hearing: “Fueling American Innovation and Recovery: The Federal Role in Research and Development” (virtual).
  • Thursday, July 9
    • House Appropriations Full Committee Markup: FY2021 Report on the Suballocation of Budget Allocations, State and Foreign Operations, Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Agriculture Appropriations Bills (1100 Longworth).
    • House Financial Services Subcommittee on Diversity and Inclusion Hearing: “Access Denied: Challenges for Women-and-Minority-Owned Businesses Accessing Capital and Financial Services During the Pandemic” (virtual).
  • Friday, July 10
    • House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Recovery Hearing: “Pandemic Response: Confronting the Unequal Impacts of COVID-19.”

Political Update

Elections. New Jersey and Delaware will hold elections on Tuesday. In two competitive primaries in South Jersey, Republican voters will choose who will face Rep. Andy Kim in the third district and Democrats will select a nominee to challenge Rep. Jeff Van Drew in the second district. Van Drew flipped the seat from red to blue in 2018, and then switched parties to Republican in 2019.

Fundraising. For the second month in a row, Joe Biden and the DNC have outraised President Trump and the RNC. The Trump joint fundraising committee had their best month ever, raising $131 million in June for a total of $266 million this quarter. Biden’s campaign announced that they had raised $141 million in June for a total of $282 million this quarter. Over the past two years, the Trump campaign has raised $947 million and has more than $295 million in cash on hand. The Biden campaign has not released its cash-on-hand numbers.

House Foreign Affairs Committee. The June 23 Democratic primary in New York pitting Rep. Eliot Engel against Jamaal Bowman has not been officially decided, pending the counting of absentee ballots, but there is already speculation as to who might take Engel’s place next year as the Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, assuming Democrats stay in the majority. With Engel trailing after in-person votes were tallied, the talk around the Hill was that the race would be between the two members who have the most seniority on the committee – Reps. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) and Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.).

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