The House and Senate are in session this week. The House will consider ten bills and resolutions under suspension of the rules, including the Moving Our Democracy and Congressional Operations Towards Modernization Resolution (H. Res. 756), which implements the first two sets of recommendations by the House Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress regarding the House's human resources, new member orientation, accessibility, information technology support, and legislative databases. For the remainder of the week, the House will vote on a package which includes the National Origin-Based Antidiscrimination for Nonimmigrants (NO BAN) Act (H.R. 2214), which limits the President's authority in suspending the entry of non-citizens into the United States from specific countries and the Affordable Prescriptions for Patients Act of 2020 (H.R. 5133 and H.R. 3991), which allows the Federal Trade Commission to stop drugmakers from reformulating a drug to prevent generic competition and limit the number of patents that can be litigated for biological products; and the Access to Counsel Act of 2020 (H.R. 5581), which requires the Homeland Security Department to provide access to legal counsel and personal contacts for individuals during screening processes at the U.S. border. The House may also vote on S. J. Res. 68, a Senate-passed War Powers Resolution which bars U.S. Armed Forces from participating in hostilities against Iran unless Congress declares war or specifically authorizes the use of military force; and legislation relating to expiring provisions of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), which lapse on March 15.
The Senate will resume debate on the bipartisan American Energy Innovation Act of 2020 (substitute amendment to S. 2657), a
of parts of more than 50 bills already advanced out of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources (ENR) Committee, which covers a range of energy and environmental issues, including energy efficiency, renewable energy, building codes, battery storage, carbon capture, electric grid security and a new generation of nuclear reactors. The Senate will first vote to invoke cloture on a substitute amendment from ENR Committee Chairwoman Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), which combines 18 amendments from Democrats and Republicans, before final passage later this week.
Numerous high-ranking Trump Administration officials are set to testify on Capitol Hill this week before various authorizing and appropriations committees to discuss the President's FY 2021 budget request for their department/agency. These include the Secretaries of State, Agriculture, Commerce, Interior, Treasury, and Housing and Urban Development, and the heads of the Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Reclamation, White House Office of Management and Budget, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Federal Communications Commission, Federal Aviation Administration, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Food and Drug Administration, among others. Additionally, there are at least six congressional hearings scheduled this week regarding the coronavirus.
Voters in Idaho, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, and Washington head to the polls on Tuesday to participate in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary. On Sunday, March 15 at 8pm ET, the two major Democratic presidential candidates still running, former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), will debate each other in Phoenix, Arizona, co-hosted by CNN, Univision, and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.