Weekly Legislative Update
 Week of May 7, 2018 
  
Congressional Outlook

The House and Senate are in session this week. The House will consider 16 bills under suspension of the rules. For the remainder of the week, the House will vote on a Senate-passed Congressional Review Act (CRA) disapproval resolution (S.J. Res. 57) to repeal the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's 2013 guidance that was meant to stop discriminatory markups on indirect loans made by car dealers; the Standard Merger and Acquisition Reviews Through Equal Rules Act of 2018 (H.R. 5645), which would curb the Federal Trade Commission's authority to challenge mergers and acquisitions through administrative proceedings; the Citizens' Right to Know Act of 2017 (H.R. 2152), which would make states and municipalities that provide federally funded pretrial services for criminal defendants as an alternative to money bail lose funding if they don't report the names and past convictions of participants to the Justice Department; and the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act of 2018 (H.R. 3053), which would require the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to issue a final decision to authorize construction of the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository in Nevada within 30 months.
 
The Senate will vote on six federal circuit court judicial nominations: Kurt Engelhardt to be Judge for the 5th Circuit (Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas); Joel Carson III to be Judge for the 10th Circuit (Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah, Wyoming); John Nalbandian to be Judge for the 6th Circuit (Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Tennessee); and Michael Brennan, Michael Scudder, and Amy St. Eve to be Judges for the 7th Circuit (Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin). Senate Democrats are also preparing to force a floor vote to restore net neutrality rules repealed by the Federal Communications Commission this past December. Democrats are planning to take the procedural step on Wednesday to compel the vote on the CRA disapproval resolution (S.J. Res. 52), which could set up the final vote as soon as the week of May 14.
 
Six weeks after enacting the final FY 2018 appropriations legislation, lawmakers are continuing work on a new set of spending bills for FY 2019. The House Appropriations Committee this week is marking up its FY19 Military Construction-VA and Legislative Branch bills, while the Energy-Water Development, Agriculture, and Commerce-Justice-Science Subcommittees are marking up their FY19 bills. Several Senate Appropriations Subcommittees will be hearing testimony on FY 2019 budget proposals from Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, Defense Secretary James Mattis, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.
 
On Tuesday, voters in Indiana, North Carolina, Ohio, and West Virginia head to the polls to vote in Democratic and Republican primaries for local, state, and federal offices.
 
On Tuesday, the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will send its official list to Congress requesting roughly $15 billion in unspent federal money be rescinded from previous spending bills (prior to the enacted FY 2018 omnibus). Under the Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 1974, once the President submits his requests, funding proposed for rescission can be withheld for up to 45 calendar days while Congress is in session. During that time, Congress can take up the President's requests in one or more rescissions bills, amend them with lawmakers' own proposals, or do nothing. On Wednesday, the OMB's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs will release its spring 2018 Unified Agenda of Federal Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions, a comprehensive list of all regulations that federal agencies will pursue or cut over the next year.
 
On Tuesday, President Trumpis lunching with Vice President Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo; Trump will also give remarks at a Federal Judges Association reception. On Wednesday, Trump hosts a Cabinet meeting and will also participate in a celebration of military mothers. On Friday, Trump is hosting a roundtable with CEOs of auto companies. President Trump also faces a Saturday, May 12 deadline to decide whether to withdraw from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.
Week in Review

Trump Administration Grants 31-Day Delay on Tariffs for U.S. Allies
 
On April 30, the Trump Administration granted the European Union, Canada, and Mexico a 31-day delay on steel and aluminum tariffs that were slated to go into effect on May 1 for those trading partners, allowing more time for talks regarding a long-term exemption. Read more.
President Trump Signs National Memorial to Fallen Educators Bill Into Law
 
On April 30, President Trump signed the following bill into law: Public Law 115-169, the " National Memorial to Fallen Educators Act," which designates the National Memorial to Fallen Educators at the National Teachers Hall of Fame in Emporia, Kansas. The Senate passed the bill on December 21 by voice vote and the House passed the bill on April 16 by a vote of 384-1. Read more. 
President Trump Signs Executive Order Establishing White House Faith and Opportunity Initiative
 
On May 3, President Trump signed Executive Order (E.O.) 13831 which establishes a new White House Faith and Opportunity Initiative within the Executive Office of the President. The Initiative "shall consult with and seek information from experts and various faith and community leaders from outside the Federal Government, including those from State, local, and tribal governments, identified by the Office of Public Liaison, the Domestic Policy Council, and the Centers for Faith and Opportunity Initiatives. These experts and leaders shall be identified based on their expertise in a broad range of areas in which faith-based and community organizations operate, including poverty alleviation, religious liberty, strengthening marriage and family, education, solutions for substance abuse and addiction, crime prevention and reduction, prisoner reentry, and health and humanitarian services." Read more.
President Trump Announces Intent to Nominate Under Secretary for Food Safety
 
On May 4, President Trump announced his intent to nominate Mindy Brashears to be the Under Secretary for Food Safety at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The position is responsible for oversight of the policies and programs of the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), which is responsible for ensuring that the nation's supply of meat, poultry, and processed egg products are safe and correctly labeled and packaged. Read more.