The House and Senate are in session this week.
Both chambers are still working to finalize the rosters for their committees, although some panels have begun scheduling organizing meetings and initial hearings. While the Senate currently has no votes scheduled for the week as they continue to organize, the House has multiple votes planned on legislation prioritized by the GOP that would roll back various COVID-19 emergency rules and regulations. Additionally, Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA) has stated that he has close to a dozen bills that he has deemed “ready to go” under the new House rules. However, some party centrists have raised concerns about the bills and argued that they should go through the committee process before being voted on.
President Biden has agreed to meet with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) to discuss the issue of raising the debt ceiling in order to avoid a default on U.S. loans. Biden has clarified that he has no plans to negotiate on the debt ceiling, while House Republicans are attempting to use it as a bargaining chip to secure substantial future social spending cuts. However, McCarthy publicly stated on Sunday that the U.S. would not default on his watch and that he wants a reasonable debt ceiling deal.
Separately, Biden will give his State of the Union address to Congress on February 7.
On Monday, the House will meet to consider multiple bills under suspension.
- Bills expected under suspension of the rules
- H.R. 290 – Commercial Remote Sensing Amendment Act of 2023 (Rep. Lucas – Science, Space, and Technology). The bill would require the Commerce Department to make a determination for a license application for private sector entities to operate private remote sensing space systems within 60 days of receiving it.
- H.R. 342 – Cost-Share Accountability Act of 2023 (Rep. Obernolte – Science, Space, and Technology). The bill would require the Department of Energy to report to Congress at least quarterly on the use of its authority to reduce or eliminate cost-sharing requirements to carry out research, development, and demonstration projects.
- H.R. 500 – Financial Exploitation Prevention Act of 2023 (Rep. Wagner – Financial Services). The legislation would permit mutual funds to delay the redemption of shares to protect older Americans and other vulnerable individuals from financial exploitation.
- H.R. 582 – Credit Union Board Modernization Act (Rep. Vargas – Financial Services). The bill would modify the required frequency of meetings by the board of directors of a federal credit union—currently set at once a month in all cases.
- H.R. 298 – Expanding Access to Capital for Rural Job Creators Act (Rep. Mooney – Financial Services). The bill would expand the focus of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Advocate for Small Business Capital Formation to identifying problems related to securing access to capital to include rural and women-owned small businesses.
Tuesday – Thursday, the House is scheduled to meet for legislative business.
- Bills expected under a rule
- H.R. 497 – Freedom for Health Care Workers Act (Rep. Duncan – Energy and Commerce). The measure would block the Health and Human Services Department’s rule requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for Medicare- and Medicaid-certified providers and suppliers.
- H.R. 382 – Pandemic Is Over Act (Rep. Guthrie – Energy and Commerce). The bill would end the COVID-19 public health emergency, which was first declared by the Health and Human Services Department in January 2020.
- H.R. 139 – SHOW UP Act of 2023 (Rep. Comer – Oversight and Accountability). The bill would require federal agencies to reinstate pre-COVID-19 telework policies and submit a plan to Congress when seeking to expand telework policies.
- H.J. Res. 7 – Relating to a national emergency declared by the President on March 13, 2020 (Rep. Gosar – Transportation and Infrastructure). The resolution would declare an end to the COVID-19 national emergency.
- H.Con.Res. 9 – Denouncing the horrors of socialism (Rep. Salazar – Financial Services). The resolution would call on Congress to denounce socialism in all forms and oppose the implementation of socialist policies in the United States.
On Monday, the Senate will convene for a period of morning business. The Whip’s office has stated that Senators can expect votes this week, although no specifics have been released.