Legislative / Policy Update
House. The House will come back into session on Saturday, Aug. 22, to vote on the Delivering for America Act, legislation that would prohibit the U.S. Postal Service from implementing any changes to the operations or level of service it had in place on Jan. 1, until the pandemic has ended. As introduced Aug. 11 by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), the bill would prohibit the USPS from revising service standards, closing post offices or reducing hours, barring overtime pay, and making other changes that would delay mail or increase the volume of undelivered mail. The legislation is still being finalized and could end up including $25 billion in emergency funding for the Postal Service, funding that was also provided in the Heroes Act that the House passed May 15.
Rep. Maloney, chair of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, said today that Postmaster General Louis DeJoy and Robert Duncan, chair of the Postal Service Board of Governors, have agreed to testify before her committee next Monday, Aug. 24.
Elections. Alaska, Florida, and Wyoming will hold primaries on Tuesday. Democrats in Alaska will choose who will face Senator Dan Sullivan in November, while GOP voters in Wyoming are picking their nominee to replace retiring Senator Mike Enzi, with former Rep. Cynthia Loomis the front runner in that race. Most of the attention in Florida will be on House races, including crowded GOP primaries to replace retiring Republican Reps. Ted Yoho and Francis Rooney.
Dem Convention. The Democratic National Convention kicks off tonight. The entirely virtual event will be significantly shorter than any previous convention. There will be fewer speeches and the roll-call vote will be only a half hour. Democrats are also doing away with the typical keynote address on Tuesday night, and instead 17 of the party’s “rising stars” will make brief remarks. Programming will be aired every night from 9:00 to 11:00, with the major networks providing coverage that begins at 10 p.m. and other outlets covering the full two hours. The convention will conclude with Joe Biden’s acceptance speech on Thursday night. Both Biden and Kamala Harris, who will speak on Wednesday, will deliver their remarks from a largely empty hall at the Chase Center in Wilmington, Del.
Polls. Two new national polls testing the full presidential ticket for both parties were just released. An ABC News/Washington Post poll shows Biden and Harris with a 10-point lead among likely voters. A CNN/SSRS poll taken at the same time also has Biden and Harris up, but with a much narrower four-point margin, 50-46.
While there are still no details on what a scaled-back reconciliation package will look like, Senator Manchin’s opposition to the Clean Electricity Performance Program may lead to its being dropped from the legislation. There’s no clear path to agreement on FY 2022 appropriations bills, but Senate Democrats released their spending proposals on Monday.Read More