Weekly Legislative Update
 Week of June 17, 2019  
Congressional Outlook

The House and Senate are both in session this week. The House will consider one bill under suspension of the rules, the Empowering Beneficiaries, Ensuring Access, and Strengthening Accountability Act of 2019 (H.R. 3253), which extends two Medicaid demonstration programs, modifies how Medicaid drug rebates are calculated, and expands state Medicaid Fraud Control Units' authority to investigate patient abuse. For the remainder of the week, the House will complete consideration of its first FY 2020 Appropriations minibus package (H.R. 2740), which includes $982.8 billion for the Labor-Health and Human Services-Education; Legislative Branch; Defense; State-Foreign Operations; and Energy-Water Development spending bills. The House will also begin consideration of its second FY 2020 Appropriations minibus package (H.R. 3055), which includes $383.3 billion for the Commerce-Justice-Science; Agriculture-Rural Development-FDA; Interior-Environment; Military Construction-Veterans Affairs; and Transportation-Housing and Urban Development spending bills.
The Senate will vote on five executive and judicial nominations this week, including: Sean Cairncross to be CEO of the Millennium Challenge Corporation; Matthew Kacsmaryk to be U.S. District Judge for the Northern District of Texas; Allen Winsor to be U.S. District Judge for the Northern District of Florida; James Cain, Jr. to be U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Louisiana; and Greg Guidry to be U.S. District Judge for the Eastern District of Louisiana. The Senate will also begin consideration of the FY 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (S. 1790), which includes $750 billion to provide troops with a 3.1% pay raise, require the Defense Department to implement more policies to address sexual assault, and authorize construction funds to replenish money redirected for activities along the southern border.
On Wednesday, the Senate Appropriations Committee will markup the "Emergency Supplemental Appropriations for Humanitarian Assistance and Security at the Southern Border Act, 2019," which provides $4.5 billion in requested funds from the Trump Administration for emergency humanitarian needs at the southern border. Lawmakers have yet to determine whether they can reach a bipartisan, bicameral agreement that would allow the bill to pass through both chambers, or if House Democrats will release their own measure. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has pledged to force a vote on the measure during the week of June 24. Additionally, the four top Congressional leaders are planning to meet this week with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, and acting White House Office of Management and Budget Director Russ Vought to discuss budget caps to avoid tens of billions of dollars in automatic cuts to government spending this fall as well as increasing the federal government's debt ceiling in order to avoid a catastrophic default.
On Tuesday evening, President Trump will travel to Orlando, Florida to officially kick off his 2020 re-election campaign. On Wednesday, Trump will present the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Arthur Laffer, who is considered the "Father of Supply-Side Economics". On Thursday, Trump will host a bilateral meeting at the White House with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to "discuss the shared economic interests of their countries, including the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement and opportunities to drive more growth and create jobs in both the United States and Canada. The two leaders will also discuss the upcoming G20 Summit, which will take place from June 28 to 29 in Osaka, Japan." Trump and First Lady Melania Trump will also host the annual Congressional picnic on Thursday evening.
Week in Review