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This Week in Congress: Middle East Policy & Trying to End the Partial Gov’t Shutdown

How do you feel about this week's congressional agenda?

by Countable | Updated on 1.11.19

Lawmakers will return to the Capitol on Tuesday with Middle East policy on the agenda and lingering uncertainty in the air about when President Donald Trump and congressional Democrats will reach a deal to end the ongoing partial government shutdown.

Tuesday evening the Senate will hold a procedural vote on a bill addressing several aspects of U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. It’d increase sanctions on the Assad regime in Syria, strengthen America’s security alliances with Israel and Jordan, and aim to counteract the anti-Israel boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement. Votes to limit debate on the bill and its final passage would likely occur later in the week.

The House on Tuesday will take up bills extending homeland security programs that aim to prevent pandemics and breaches of hazardous chemical facilities by terrorists. On Wednesday, reps will vote on the final portion of the House rules package that allows the chamber to intervene in Obamacare-related lawsuits and several bipartisan small business bills. Later in the week, there will be votes on bipartisan bills to sanction the Assad regime, increase workplace protections for federal workers & interns, strengthen anti-terrorism efforts in Africa, and require all American flags bought by the federal government to be made in the U.S.

Before the work week concludes, the House is expected to take up four of the appropriations bills that it passed last week as a six-bill, $271 billion “minibus” funding package as standalone bills, including: Finacial Services & General Gov’t; Transportation, Housing and Urban Development; Agriculture; and Interior & Environment.

Check here throughout the week to see the vote results and updates to the schedule.

Schedule subject to change. All times Eastern.

Senate

Tuesday after 5:30pm

  • Cloture motion on the motion to proceed to S. 1: Strengthening America’s Security in the Middle East Act Not agreed to 56-44.

Wednesday

  • Debate on S. 1: Strengthening America’s Security in the Middle East Act

Thursday after 1:45pm

  • Cloture motion on the motion to proceed to S. 1: Strengthening America’s Security in the Middle East Act Not agreed to 53-43.
  • S. 24: Government Employee Fair Treatment Act of 2019 Passed by voice vote.

House

Tuesday after 6:30pm (all suspensions)

  • H.R. 269: Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness and Advancing Innovation Act of 2019 (Original summary) Passed 401-17.
  • H.R. 251: Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards Program Extension Act Passed 414-3.
  • H.R. 259: Medicaid Extenders Act of 2019 (Original summary) Passed by voice vote.
  • H.R. 226: Clarity on Small Business Participation in Category Management Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 227: Incentivizing Fairness in Subcontracting Act Passed by voice vote.
  • H.R. 128: Small Business Advocacy Improvements Act Passed by voice vote.

Wednesday after 12pm

  • H.R. 264: Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act, 2019 Passed 240-188.
  • H.Res. 6: House Rules Package for the 116th Congress (Title III) Adopted 235-192.
  • H.R. 226: Clarity on Small Business Participation in Category Management Passed 414-11.

Thursday after 12pm

  • H.R. 265: Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2019 Passed 243-183.
  • H.R. 267: Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2019 Passed 244-180.
  • H.R. 31: Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act of 2019 Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 133: United States-Mexico Economic Partnership Act Passed by voice vote.
  • H.R. 192: Trans-Sahara Counter-terrorism Partnership Act Passed by voice vote.
  • H.R. 221: Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Act Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 115: Protecting Diplomats from Surveillance Through Consumer Devices Act Passed by voice vote.

Friday between 9am and 3pm

  • H.R. 266: Department of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2019 Passed 240-179.
  • S. 24: Government Employee Fair Treatment Act of 2019 Passed 414-7.
  • H.R. 221: Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Act Passed 411-1.
  • H.R. 113: All-American Flag Act Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 150: GREAT Act Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 135: Federal Employee Anti-Discrimination Act Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 136: Federal Intern Protection Act Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 116: Investing in Main Street Act Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 206: Encouraging Small Business Innovators Act Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 246: Stimulating Innovation through Procurement Act Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 190: Expanding Contract Opportunities for Small Businesses Act Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 202: Inspector General Access Act Vote postponed.
  • H.R. 247: Federal CIO Authorization Act Vote postponed.

Tell your reps how to vote on this week's bills and share your thoughts below!

— Eric Revell

Countable

Written by Countable

Leave a comment
(141)
  • Judith
    Voted Happy
    01/06/2019
    ···

    The Senate Majority Leader & Senate GOP need to demonstrate some backbone & end the shutdown WITHOUT Trump’s stupid & unnecessary wall.

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  • Chris
    Voted Sad
    01/06/2019
    ···

    There is only ONE thing on the agenda this week - passing the BIPARTISAN bill to reopen the government. The Senate passed it once, so they have the votes to do so again. Until federal workers are back on the job and getting paid. Nothing else is important.

    Like (56)
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  • Beth
    01/06/2019
    ···

    How about you get on McConnell to get a vote and get the damn government opened up, because we don’t need a wall

    Like (44)
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  • NoHedges
    Voted Apathetic
    01/06/2019
    ···

    I want a cost estimate on every single piece of legislation, program, or resolution proposed by Mr. Thompson. Last time this team was at the helm Mr. Thompson’s cut was roughly 17 million in earmarks. Quite a sizable “bonus” when the average salary in his district was 36,000 per year.

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  • farfarleft
    Voted Happy
    01/06/2019
    ···

    There is no excuse for keeping the government closed. Hundreds of thousands of families are suffering due to the temper tantrum thrown by a president who refuses to listen to experts about what is necessary for border security. The Senate must vote to reopen the government. If the president vetoes that bill,Congress must override. The majority of this country cannot be held hostage by the most xenophobic, fearful andi uninformed 1/3 of the nation’s voters.

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  • James
    01/06/2019
    ···

    Get that border wall built! Anything that the Dem controlled house sends to the senate can and will easily die there! These new folks that are left wing socialists will be gone in four years anyway as working class Americans will not tolerate their childish behavior and irresponsible demands! I picture Ocasio Cortez working in a massage parlor in five years!

    Like (27)
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  • Page
    Voted Apathetic
    01/06/2019
    ···

    Get the government open, do NOT fund the wall, and vote NO on the BDS bill. That will fund our national parks, prevent an ecologically disastrous wall, and protect our first amendment rights.

    Like (15)
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  • John
    Voted Sad
    01/06/2019
    ···

    If Trump doesn’t agree to end the shutdown, without a stupid wall, proceed full steam ahead with impeachment. He is bad for America, and I suspect strongly that he is a traitor.

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  • Daniel
    Voted Happy
    01/06/2019
    ···

    I'm tired of the government shut down and it needs to end because some of the Wildlife national parks are getting trashed because the trash cans have not been emptied yet and we need to keep those clean because I am helping support Wildlife to keep it safe from getting littered and I want to help reopen the government so all the workers of the national parks can keep it clean.

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  • Marianne.Mallet
    Voted Happy
    01/06/2019
    ···

    It's time to end the Trump shutdown and reopen government. The political stunt at the border needs to end. Let's have hearings with border security experts who can provide input on what is actually needed to secure the border and not rely on the administrations "talking points" which are not based on verifiable facts. From there, border security can be improved in a responsible and humane manner.

    Like (19)
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  • Nashluna
    Voted Apathetic
    01/06/2019
    ···

    Republicans had control of both House and Senate, AND the Presidency!! This happened under their watch. Two previous bills were proposed and expenditures made for border security, McConnell didn’t bring them to vote. Since 2016 National debt has risen $2T under Republicans. Tax plan lowered taxes for the wealthy and corporations, farmers and industries penalized by tariff wars. Govt employees and contractors aren’t getting paid, and some won’t receive back pay, because the US has a “President” who is easily egged on by media. Pass a bill to open the government.

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  • Kojo
    Voted Sad
    01/06/2019
    ···

    America ruins everything. Just... fix it. Allotting funds to solve our issues before international needs is important. We don’t need to be involved in everything. Superpower be damned. There are too many issues stateside to be sending money elsewhere. Diplomacy is important also but not above home concerns.

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  • Lawrence
    Voted Sad
    01/06/2019
    ···

    Press on with Legislation that opens the Government

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  • Rj
    01/07/2019
    ···

    Sounds like the democrats in the house are trying to get things done. Now if we could get the Republican Senators to get off their asses and do their jobs, maybe we could get the government up and running again. we expect you to do your job or resign and let someone with a backbone replace you! Shame on you for hiding behind trump. Pass something and send it to him to sign. DO YOUR JOBS Senators!

    Like (11)
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  • Cassandra
    Voted Apathetic
    01/07/2019
    ···

    I think it is the outside of enough that I have to work 60 hours a week. Clean and care for my family and read every bill line by line to keep the Republicans from turning the US from an oligarchy to a totalitarian state. Why can you not just govern using decency and common sense instead of greed and chicanery.

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  • burrkitty
    Voted Apathetic
    01/07/2019
    ···

    Tell the Republicans in the senate to get off their arrogant entitled butts and do their job. We have a method to deal with this. It’s called a VETO OVERRIDE. There is not going to be a wall. DO YOUR JOBS.

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  • Abe
    Voted Sad
    01/06/2019
    ···

    In the midst of a partial government shutdown, You all and your Republican colleagues have decided that one of your first orders of business next week should be to sneak through a bill that would weaken Americans’ First Amendment protections. The bill, Combatting BDS Act, encourages states to adopt the very same anti-boycott laws that two federal courts blocked on First Amendment grounds. The legislation, like the unconstitutional state anti-boycott laws it condones, sends a message to Americans that they will be penalized if they dare to disagree with their government. We therefore urge senators to vote no on the Combatting BDS Act next week!

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  • Deirdre
    Voted Apathetic
    01/07/2019
    ···

    No stupid wall. Restart government! Do your stupid jobs!

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  • Donna
    Voted Happy
    01/07/2019
    ···

    All I want to see is the Government reopened! Absolutely no excuse for it to be shutdown. The House and Senate can pass the proper bills and override this White House! Get it done no excuses override him!

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  • David
    Voted Happy
    01/06/2019
    ···

    No wall, no wall no wall. 80% of the people in the country illegally, have simply overstayed their visas. 90% of these people flew in, making the wall an expensive blunder.

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