Monday, February 6, 2023

Committee Hearings – Week of 2-5-23

This week with both the House and Senate in Washington, there is a slight increase in the pace of committee hearings with a number House hearings on Republican investigations beginning. Organizational hearing still predominate.

Organizational Hearing of Note

House Homeland Security Committee – 2-8-23,

House Appropriations Committee – 2-8-23, and

Senate Homeland Security ang Governmental Affairs Committee – 2-9-23

House Rules Committee Hearing

The House Rules Committee will meet today to formulate a rule on three pieces of legislation to be considered by the House this week, what they are is not particularly important here. What is worth watching, however, is how the new Rules Committee operates and how the Republican leadership continues (or not) their promise of opening up debate in the House.

Of the three bills (actually two resolutions and one bill) only one (HR 185, To terminate the requirement imposed by the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for proof of COVID–19 vaccination for foreign travelers, and for other purposes) has been opened for proposed amendments. Amendment submissions will close today at 10:00 am for the 5:00 pm hearing. To date eight amendments have been submitted, seven from Democrats and 1 from a Republican. With the light schedule this week, there is no logistical reason why all eight amendments could not be debated on the floor of the House.

The bill is likely to pass on a party-line vote and will probably be ignored in the Senate.

On the Floor

In addition to the three bills mentioned above, the House will consider three additional bills under the suspension of the rules process. Those debates are scheduled for today. One of those bills (as I mentioned Saturday) is of interest here: HR 302, the Energy Cybersecurity University Leadership Act of 2023.

Tuesday evening will be the State of the Union address by President Biden. This bit of political theater could get mildly ugly this year, depending on how restrained the right-wing opposition is or is not. I suspect that there will be some loud heckling at the least.

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