Weekly Washington Outlook — July 5, 2016

White House at Night 1792 Washington, DC, USA
White House at Night 1792 Washington, DC, USA

What to Watch This Week:



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On Tuesday, the House will consider a series of non-controversial bills under suspension of the rules. A full list is available here.

On Wednesday and the balance of the week, the House will consider the following:
1) H.R. 5611 – Homeland Safety and Security Act (Subject to a Rule)(Sponsored by Rep. Kevin McCarthy / Homeland Security Committee)
2) H.R. 4361 – The Federal Information Systems Safeguards Act of 2016, Rules Committee Print (Subject to a Rule) (Sponsored by Rep. Gary Palmer / Oversight and Government Reform Committee)
3) H.R. 5485 – Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act, 2017 (Structured Rule) (Sponsored by Rep. Ander Crenshaw / Appropriations Committee)
4) H.R. 1270 – Restoring Access to Medication Act of 2015, Rules Committee Print (Closed Rule) (Sponsored by Rep. Lynn Jenkins / Ways and Means Committee)
5) Possible Consideration of Legislation Related to the Federal Aviation Administration
6) Possible Motion to Go to Conference on S. 2943 – National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017, and Possible Democrat Motion to Instruct Conferees
7) Possible Consideration of the Conference Report to Accompany S. 524 – Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act of 2016

On Wednesday, the Senate will take procedural votes on S. 3100, the Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act (Sen. Toomey) and S. 1762, Kate’s Law (Sen. Cruz). Later in the day, the Senate will vote on the confirmation of Brian Martinotti to be U.S. District Judge for the district of New Jersey. The Senate is also expected to consider spending for the Department of Defense and legislation related to genetically modified foods.

White House:
On Tuesday, the President will travel to Charlotte, North Carolina for a Hillary for America campaign event.

On Wednesday, the president will attend meetings at the White House.

On Thursday, President Obama will travel to Warsaw, Poland to attend the 2016 NATO Summit. The meeting will afford an opportunity to underscore Alliance solidarity, to advance efforts to bolster security to NATO’s east and south, and to project stability through new partnerships beyond the North Atlantic area.

On Friday, the president will meet with the presidents of the European Council and the European Commission to discuss U.S.-EU cooperation across a range of shared priorities, including countering terrorism, fostering economic growth and prosperity, and addressing the global refugee crisis. Afterward, President Obama will hold a bilateral meeting with NATO Secretary-General Stoltenberg. In the afternoon, the president will hold a bilateral meeting with President Duda of Poland to discuss U.S.-Polish relations and exchange views on the broader security environment in Europe. In the evening, President Obama will participate in a family photo and attend a working dinner with NATO leaders.

On Saturday, the President will attend a NATO session on Afghanistan followed by a session of the North Atlantic Council. In the afternoon, he’ll participate in a session of the NATO-Ukraine Commission before holding a press conference. In the evening, the President will depart Warsaw, Poland and travel to Seville, Spain. The visit to Spain will highlight robust security cooperation, a strong political and economic relationship, and longstanding people-to-people ties.

Also this Week:
Immigration – The Senate will consider legislation this week sponsored by Sen. Toomey (R-Penn.) that would block so-called “sanctuary cities” from receiving Community Development Block Grant funding. Related, the Senate will also take a procedural vote on “Kate’s Law,” sponsored by Sen. Cruz (R-Texas) that would establish new mandatory minimum sentences for illegal re-entry into the United States. Both measures became popular after the tragic death of Kathryn Steinle one year ago. Opponents argue, however, the community-oriented policing and community trust policies make many neighborhoods safer as they enable victims of crime and witnesses to crime to come forward without fear of immigration enforcement.

Appropriations – The House will attempt to complete consideration of the FY2017 Financial Services and General Government spending bill, H.R. 5485. Original consideration was interrupted two weeks ago due to the Democratic sit-in over gun control. Additionally, the Senate is expected to begin its consideration of this year’s Department of Defense spending bill.

Guns – After House Democrats staged a sit-in two weeks ago to force a vote on gun control legislation, the House this week is scheduled to vote on a measure that would block gun sales to suspected terrorists (H.R. 5611).

Health – The House will vote this week on mental health legislation, H.R. 2646, that would expand mental health service coverage under Medicaid. The legislation would also create an Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Abuse at the Department of Health and Human Services. This department would be authorized to promulgate regulations regarding patient confidentiality to facilitate information-sharing amongst providers while protecting healthcare users. The legislation was approved by the Energy and Commerce Committee on a bipartisan basis. Elsewhere, Senate Democrats blocked a Zika-funding proposal last week that would cut ACA-related spending. Efforts are ongoing to pass an emergency spending bill before the start of the summer Olympics and Congressional recess.

Nutrition – The House Agriculture Committee will hold a hearing on Wednesday on error and fraud rates in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).