Recapping yesterday's action:
The House met yesterday to run through its traditional start-of-the-week suspension bills, passing the bulk of them by voice vote, two by roll call vote, and postponing one roll call vote for today.
The Senate, while working towards an agreement on amendments to the farm bill, confirmed the nomination of Mary Geiger Lewis to be United States District Judge for the District of South Carolina.
So that's nice.
Even better, they actually did reach an agreement on the farm bill. Sort of. I mean, they definitely do have an agreement and are going to move forward, it's just... well, you'll see.
Looking ahead to today:
The House takes up the "Conservation and Economic Growth Act" today, which you just know has got to be a crock, since the Republicans who control the chamber don't give a crap about conservation or economic growth. Basically, the bill purports to promote economic growth by undoing decisions aimed at actual conservation. It's not being well-received in the White House, which has so far stopped short of threatening to veto it. But it's certainly clear that they have a close eye on it. Maybe not that close, though, since the White House usually isn't shy about saying quite clearly that if things don't change in the amending process, they'll consider a veto. And they didn't bother saying that here (PDF).
Oh, and of course, they'll have a motion to instruct the conferees on that transportation bill that looks increasingly doomed with each passing week.
In the Senate, it's on to the work of plowing through the now agreed-upon amendments to the farm bill. And here's what I mean about this being a "sort-of" agreement: prior to the agreement, there were about a hundred proposed amendments. This agreement covers 73 of them, eight of which are subject to a 60-vote threshold. Eight's not bad, considering how many amendments were floating out there. But allowing 70%+ of the amendments offered, including such non-germane items as Sen. Tom Coburn's (R-OK) amendment to eliminate federal funding for the major party conventions, seems like a less than efficient outcome from more than a week of negotiations. Still, there were some real stinkers in the mix there, and a lot of Senators interested in causing trouble with votes on them, so it was pretty clear from early on that the price of convincing Republicans to exclude them was going to be a very high number of amendments allowed.
Late in the day, the Senate will also begin work on a resolution of disapproval on the EPA rule limiting mercury emissions from electric plants. Because everyone could use a little more mercury in their lives, don't you think? The measure won't come to a vote until tomorrow, though, so I'll wait until then to tell you that it's under an explicit veto threat. Until tomorrow, then, you didn't hear that from me.
Today's floor and committee schedules appear below the fold.
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In the House, courtesy of the Office of the Democratic Whip:
THE NIGHTLY WHIP: MONDAY, JUNE 18, 2012In the Senate, courtesy of the Office of the Majority Leader, it appears we have something other than the traditional floor schedule entry:
On Tuesday, the House will meet at 10:00 a.m. for Morning Hour debate and 12:00 p.m. for legislative business.
First votes expected: 1:30 – 2:30 p.m.
Last votes expected: 5:00 – 6:00 p.m.
“One Minutes” (15 per side)
H.R. 2578 – Conservation and Economic Growth Act (Rep. Denham – Natural Resources) (Subject to a Rule)
The Rule provides for 90 minutes of general debate and makes in order the following amendments:
Rep. Hastings (WA) Manager’s Amendment (10 minutes of debate)
Rep. DeFazio Amendment (10 minutes of debate)
Rep. Markey Amendment (10 minutes of debate)
Rep. Bishop (UT) Amendment (10 minutes of debate)
Rep. Grijalva Amendment (10 minutes of debate)
Rep. Hanabusa Amendment (10 minutes of debate)
Rep. Cravaack Amendment (10 minutes of debate)
Motion to Instruct Conferees on H.R. 4348 – Surface Transportation Extension Act of 2012, Part II (Rep. Walz)
Postponed Suspension (1 bill)
- H.R. 2938 – Gila Bend Indian Reservation Lands Replacement Clarification Act (Rep. Franks – Natural Resources)
Agreement on S.3240, the Farm bill6/18 wrap-up:
The Senate has locked an agreement to limit amendments and bring the Farm bill to passage. Under the agreement, we will begin voting on amendments at 2:15pm tomorrow. There will be a break in consideration of the amendments to debate and vote in relation to S.J.Res.37, Boiler MACT/EPA, Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning. I will send the agreement on the joint resolution of disapproval in a separate email message once it is locked in. Please note that we will consider amendments in an alternating fashion between Democrats and Republicans.
The agreement is as follows:
Leader: I ask unanimous consent that when the Senate resumes consideration of S.3240, the pending motion to recommit be withdrawn; that amendment #2390 be withdrawn; that the Stabenow-Roberts amendment #2389 be agreed to; the bill, as amended, be considered original text for the purposes of further amendment; that the following amendments and motions be the only first degree amendments and motions in order to the bill:
- Akaka #2440 (highly fractionated tribal lands);
- Akaka #2396 (tribal relations office);
- Baucus #2429 (Livestock);
- Bingaman #2364 (multi-state aquifers);
- Brown (OH) #2445 (rural development);
- Cantwell #2370 (pulse pilot);
- Casey #2238 (technical/study -federal milk marketing)
- Coons #2426 (poultry insurance study);
- Feinstein #2422 (conservation innovation grants);
- Feinstein #2309 (insurance recall);
- Gillibrand #2156 (SNAP);
- Hagan #2366 (crop insurance – plain language);
- Kerry #2187 (commercial fishermen);
- Landrieu #2321 (rural development loans);
- Manchin #2345 (dietary study);
- Merkley #2382 (organic crop insurance);
- Schumer #2427 (acer);
– Stabenow #2453 (NAP);
- Udall(CO) #2295 (bark beetle);
- Warner #2457 (rural broadband);
- Wyden #2442 (microloans);
- Wyden #2388 (farm to school);
- Leahy #2204 (rural development);
- Nelson(NE) #2242 (rural housing);
- Klobuchar #2299 (transportation study);
- Carper #2287 (poultry feed research);
- Sanders #2254 (biomass);
- Thune #2437 (crop insurance);
- Durbin-Coburn #2439 (crop insurance);
- Snowe #2190 (milk marketing order reform);
- Ayotte #2192 (value added grants);
- Collins #2444 (dairy);
- Grassley #2167 (pay cap marketing loans);
- Sessions #2174 (SNAP);
- Nelson(NE) #2243 (SNAP);
- Sessions #2172 (SNAP);
- Paul #2181 ($250,000 income limit);
- Alexander #2191 (wind loans);
- McCain #2199 (catfish);
- Toomey #2217 (organic/AMA);
- DeMint #2263 (broadband funding);
- DeMint #2262 (SoS Free MKT);
- DeMint #2268 (Loan guarantees);
- DeMint #2276 (checkoffs);
- DeMint #2273 (broadband);
- Coburn #2289 (MAP);
- Coburn #2293 (Limit Millionaires);
- Kerry #2454 (North Korea);
- Kyl #2354 (North Korea);
- Lee #2313 (Forest Legacy);
- Lee #2314 (CSP/CRP cut);
- Boozman #2355 (Ag research, law info);
- Boozman #2360 (TEFAP);
- Toomey #2226 (energy title);
- Toomey #2433 (sugar);
- Lee Motion to Recommit (FY 2008 levels);
- Johnson(WI) Motion to Recommit;
- Chambliss #2438 (conservation crop insurance);
- Chambliss #2340 (sugar);
- Chambliss #2432 (FMPP);
- Ayotte #2195 (GAO crop insurance fraud report);
- Blunt #2246 (veterans);
- Moran #2403 (food aid);
- Moran #2443 (beginning farmers)
- Vitter #2363 (pets);
- Toomey #2247 (paperwork);
- Sanders #2310 (genetically engineered food);
- Coburn #2214 (convention funding);
- Boxer #2456 (aerial inspections);
- Johanns #2372 (aerial inspections);
- Murray #2455 (sequestration);
- McCain #2162 (Sequestration report – DoD); and
- Rubio #2166 (RAISE Act).
That at 2:15pm, Tuesday, June 19th, the Senate proceed to votes in relation to the amendments in the order listed alternating between Republican and Democratic sponsored amendments; that there be no amendments or motions in order to the amendments prior to the votes other than motions to waive points of order and motions to table; that there be two minutes of debate equally divided in the usual form in between the votes and all after the first vote be ten minute votes; that the Toomey #2247; Sanders #2256; Coburn #2214; Boxer #2456; Johanns #2372; Murray #2455; McCain #2162 and the Rubio amendment #2166 be subject to a 60 affirmative vote threshold; that the clerks be authorized to modify the instruction lines on amendments so the page and line numbers match up correctly; that upon disposition of the amendments, the bill, as amended, be read a third time; that there be up to ten minutes equally divided in the usual form prior to a vote on passage of the bill, as amended, if amended; finally, the vote on passage of the bill be subject to a 60 affirmative vote threshold.
Senate Floor Wrap Up for Monday, June 18, 2012Today's House committee schedule:
ROLL CALL VOTE
1) Confirmation of Executive Calendar #612, the nomination of Mary Geiger Lewis, of SC, to be United States District Judge for the District of South Carolina; Confirmed: 64-27
Agreed to a Snowe amendment to the preamble of S.Res.488, a resolution commending the efforts of the firefighters and emergency response personnel of Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut, who came together to extinguish the May 23, 2012, fire at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine., notwithstanding adoption of the resolution.
Discharged Judiciary and adopted S.Res.470, a resolution designating July 28, 2012, as “National Day of the American Cowboy”.
Adopted S.Res.495, designating the period beginning on June 17, 2012, and ending on June 23, 2012, as “Polycystic Kidney Disease Awareness Week”, and raising awareness and understanding of polycystic kidney disease and the impact such disease has on patients.
No EXECUTIVE ITEMS
APPROPRIATIONS------------------------------------10:15-OpenToday's Senate committee schedule:
Full Committee. Markup of H.R. _ - Agriculture Appropriations Act for FY 2013, and H.R. _ - Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development Appropriations Act for FY 2013. 2359 RHOB.
Full Committee. Markup of the committee activities and summary report. 210 CHOB.
ENERGY & COMMERCE--------------------------------10:00-Open
Energy and Power Subc. On the EPA’s greenhouse gas regulations. Dept. and public witnesses. 2123 RHOB.
ENERGY & COMMERCE--------------------------------10:15-Open
Oversight and Investigations Subc. On reviewing the federal green jobs agenda. Dept. and public witnesses. 2322 RHOB.
ENERGY & COMMERCE---------------------------------4:00-Open
Full Committee. Markup of H.R. 5865 – American Manufacturing Competiveness Act of 2012, and H.R. 5859 – To repeal an obsolete provision in title 49, United States Code, requiring motor vehicle insurance cost reporting, H.R. 4273 – Resolving Environmental and Grid Reliability Conflicts Act of 2012, H.R. 5892 – Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency Act of 2012, H.Con.Res. 127 – Expressing the sense of Congress regarding actions to preserve and advance the multistakeholder governance model under which the Internet has thrived, and the committee activities and summary report. 2123 RHOB.
Full Committee. On reviewing the $2 billion J.P. Morgan Chase trading loss that is being investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the FBI. Dept. witnesses. 2128 RHOB.
Border and Maritime Security Subc. On examining the Department of Homeland Security’s response to shifting border smuggling tactics and techniques. Dept. witnesses. 311 CHOB.
Transportation Security Subc. On examining the TSA’s purchase of CAT/BPSS a new technology that expedites the travel document checking process. 311 CHOB.
Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet Subc. On examining new technologies and innovations in the mobile and online space, and the implications for public policy. Public witnesses. 2141 RHOB.
Full Committee. Markup of H.R. 5949 – FISA Amendments Act Reauthorization Act of 2012. 2141 RHOB.
Full Committee. On the impact of taxpayer-funded attorneys fees and time spent on the Endangered Species Act litigation. 1324 LHOB.
Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans, and Insular Affairs Subc. On H.R. 2706 – Billfish Conservation Act of 2011, H.R. 3472 – Pirate Fishing Vessel Disposal Act of 2011, and H.R. 4100 – Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing Enforcement Act of 2011. Dept. and public witnesses. 1324 LHOB.
OVERSIGHT & GOVERNMENT REFORM------------------10:00-Open
Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight, and Government Spending Subc. On reviewing the Obama administration’s green energy policies. Public witnesses. 2154 RHOB.
Full Committee. On H.R. 4480 – Strategic Energy Production Act of 2012. H-313 Capitol.
SCIENCE, SPACE, & TECHNOLOGY--------------------10:00-Open
Technology and Innovation Subc. On examining the best practices and approaches to create a uniform patent policy among federal agencies that fund research. Public witnesses. 2318 RHOB.
SCIENCE, SPACE, & TECHNOLOGY----------------------2:00-Open
Investigations and Oversight Subc. On the science of how hunting assists species conservation and management. Dept. and public witnesses. 2318 RHOB.
Full Committee. On examining the Veterans Benefits Administration’s claims transformation plan as a means to serve veterans. Dept. and public witnesses. 334 CHOB.
WAYS & MEANS-------------------------------------10:00-Open
Health Subc. On recommendations from the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission for overhauling Medicare and its payment policies. 1100 LHOB.
Business meeting to consider pending nominations.
Energy and Natural Resources
Hearings to examine the potential for induced seismicity from energy technologies, including carbon capture and storage, enhance geothermal systems, production from gas shales, and enhanced oil recovery.
Environment and Public Works: Subcommittee on Clean Air and Nuclear Safety
Hearings to examine a review of recent Environmental Protection Agency's air standards for hydraulically fractured natural gas wells and oil and natural gas storage.
Hearings to examine confronting the looming fiscal crisis.
Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions
Hearings to examine Title IX, focusing on forty years and counting.
Judiciary: Subcommittee on Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights
Hearings to examine reassessing solitary confinement, focusing on the human rights, fiscal and public safety consequences.
Business meeting to consider S.641, to provide 100,000,000 people with first-time access to safe drinking water and sanitation on a sustainable basis within six years by improving the capacity of the United States Government to fully implement the Senator Paul Simon Water for the Poor Act of 2005, S.1039, to impose sanctions on persons responsible for the detention, abuse, or death of Sergei Magnitsky, for the conspiracy to defraud the Russian Federation of taxes on corporate profits through fraudulent transactions and lawsuits against Hermitage, and for other gross violations of human rights in the Russian Federation, S.2165, to enhance strategic cooperation between the United States and Israel, H.R.4240, to reauthorize the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004, S.Res.402, condemning Joseph Kony and the Lord's Resistance Army for committing crimes against humanity and mass atrocities, and supporting ongoing efforts by the United States Government and governments in central Africa to remove Joseph Kony and Lord's Resistance Army commanders from the battlefield, S.Res.429, supporting the goals and ideals of World Malaria Day, S.Res.473, commending Rotary International and others for their efforts to prevent and eradicate polio, S.Res.385, condemning the Government of Iran for its continued persecution, imprisonment, and sentencing of Youcef Nadarkhani on the charge of apostasy, and the nominations of Piper Anne Wind Campbell, of the District of Columbia, to be Ambassador to Mongolia, Peter William Bodde, of Maryland, to be Ambassador to the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, Dorothea-Maria Rosen, of California, to be Ambassador to the Federated States of Micronesia, Edward M. Alford, of Virginia, to be Ambassador to the Republic of The Gambia, Mark L. Asquino, of the District of Columbia, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, Douglas M. Griffiths, of Texas, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Mozambique, Michele Jeanne Sison, of Maryland, to be Ambassador to the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, and to serve concurrently and without additional compensation as Ambassador to the Republic of Maldives, Brett H. McGurk, of Connecticut, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Iraq, Susan Marsh Elliott, of Florida, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Tajikistan, Richard L. Morningstar, of Massachusetts, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Azerbaijan, Timothy M. Broas, of Maryland, to be Ambassador to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Jay Nicholas Anania, of Maryland, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Suriname, all of the Department of State, and lists in the Foreign Service.
Closed hearings to examine certain intelligence matters.
Joint Economic Committee
Hearings to examine the economic impact of ending or reducing funding for the American Community Survey and other government statistics.