Capitol Hill Update: February 11, 2019


The House and Senate are in session this week.


The House will return today. Legislative business begins at 2:00 pm. There are only five bills coming to the floor on suspension, although more could be added. Votes are postponed until 6:30 pm.

  • H.R. 1063, Presidential Library Donation Reform Act
  • H.R. 1065, Social Media Use in Clearance Investigations Act
  • H.R. 1064, To amend title 5, United States Code, to allow whistleblowers to disclose information to certain recipients
  • H.R. 995, Settlement Agreement Information Database Act
  • H.R. 1079, CASES Act

No votes are expected in the House on Tuesday. H.J.Res. 37 is the only rule bill currently on the calendar. H.J.Res. 37 is the Yemen War Powers Resolution. The resolution would direct the Trump administration to end the United States’ involvement in the Yemen Civil War. You should bet on a vote or votes on appropriations bills this week consider that the current government funding deadline is Friday, February 15. Those talks are stalled, and what happens next is an open question.

The timing isn’t clear, but Rep. Al Green (D-Texas) will apparently offer a privileged resolution to impeach President Trump at some point soon. Rep. Green offered similar resolutions in December 2017 and January 2018. Both resolutions, H.Res. 646 and H.Res. 705, were easily tabled. The result isn’t likely to change, although more Democrats will probably vote for the resolution to move forward.

The committee schedule for the week is here.


The Senate returns today at 3:00 pm and will resume consideration of the Natural Resources Management Act, S. 47, which is the lands package. On Thursday, the Senate tabled two amendments to the bill, one offered by Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) and another offered by Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah). The Senate will vote on the cloture motion for S. 47 around 5:30 pm. Other votes related to S. 47 are possible. On Thursday, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) filed cloture on the nomination of William Barr to serve as attorney general. A specific day and time for the vote haven’t been provided, but a cloture vote will likely happen early in the week.

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved more than 40 judicial nominees on Thursday, paving the way for consideration on the floor. Several nominees were approved along party lines, indicating that Democrats, absent a consent agreement on judges, will push for roll call votes. The Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC) will mark up several bills at its hearing on Wednesday at 10:00 am. The bills currently slated for consideration include the Guidance Out of Darkness (GOOD) Act, S. 380, and the Fair Chance Act, S. 387. The GOOD Act would require federal agencies to post guidance documents online. The Fair Chance Act would eliminate the criminal history section on applications for government jobs and federally contracted jobs. 

On Wednesday, the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee will consider the nomination of Dennis Kirk to serve as chairman of the Merit Systems Protection Board and the nominations of Julia Clark and Andrew Maunz to serve as members of the Merit Systems Protection Board. The committee will also consider Ronald D. Vitiello to serve as an assistant secretary of Homeland Security. The Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee will consider the nominations of Janice Hellreich, Robert Mandell, Don Munce, and Bruce Ramer to serve as members of the Board of Directors of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. On Thursday, the Banking, House, and Urban Affairs Committee will hold hearings on the nominations of Bimal Patel to be an assistant secretary of the Treasury, Todd Harper and Rodney Hood to serve as members of the National Credit Union Administration Board, Mark Calabria to serve as the director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

The committee schedule for the week is here.