budget

Budget Overhaul Proposals Likely to Stay in Play After Nov. 30
Joint Committee expected to offer recommendations next month

House Budget Chairman Steve Womack, R-Ark., says that proposals that aren’t accepted by other lawmakers could work their way into future legislation. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The legislative proposals under development by the Joint Select Committee on Budget and Appropriations Process Reform could enjoy a life of their own after the special panel’s work is done later this year.

Members of the 16-member bicameral committee are hoping to agree on a package of proposed changes to improve the budget process by a Nov. 30 deadline, allowing their recommendations to be submitted to Congress for action.

Analysis: Here’s Why Trump’s Budget Proposal May Cut Deeper Than Advertised
Even cutting 5 percent would be a tough sell in Congress for either party

Obama budget director Jack Lew also got tough with agency budgets. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump’s new push to trim the proposed budgets of all federal agencies next year could prove more draconian than it sounds, amounting to a 25 percent cut for all nondefense programs compared to the current year.

Technically, the request is for 5 percent cuts across the Cabinet departments, as Trump laid out at a White House event Wednesday: “We’re going to ask every [Cabinet] secretary to cut 5 percent for next year,” Trump told reporters, presumably referring to fiscal 2020, beginning next October.

Democrats Spin McConnell Entitlement Comments Into Political Messaging
McConnell says Republicans cannot tackle program on their own but Democrats warn of GOP action

Sen. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., says a vote for the GOP is a vote to cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, spinning Senate Majority McConnell’s comments that Republicans can’t execute that goal on their own. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democrats are spinning comments Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell recently made on overhauling entitlements to craft a political message that electing Republicans will lead to cuts in safety net programs. 

“Sen. McConnell gave the game up in his comment yesterday,” Maryland Sen. Chris Van Hollen, who chairs the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, said on a press call Wednesday. “It was very clear from what he said that a vote for Republican candidates in this election is a vote to cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. That’s what he said.”

Behind the Interest Rate Increases
CQ Budget Podcast, Episode 82

FED Chairman Jerome Powell. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Key House Appropriators Face Tough Midterm Elections
CQ Budget Podcast, Episode 81

Congressional Leadership Fund is rolling out new spending in Kansas' 3rd District to protect Rep. Kevin Yoder. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Three Republican House Appropriations subcommittee chairmen — Kevin Yoder of Kansas, John Culberson of Texas and John Carter of Texas — face tough re-elections, says Roll Call senior political reporter Bridget Bowman. A loss for Yoder and Culberson would mean that lame-duck lawmakers end up negotiating two vital spending bills — Homeland Security and Commerce-Justice-Science.

From Adams to Pence: Long History of Memorable VP Tie-Breakers
If Kavanaugh vote is deadlocked, vice president would put him on Supreme Court

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh (left) walks up the Capitol's Senate steps with Vice President Mike Pence for a meeting with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., on July 10. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Donald Trump face a high-stakes Saturday showdown with a handful of key senators that will decide whether the Supreme Court tilts to the right — perhaps for decades to come. But it might fall to Vice President Mike Pence to put him on the highest bench in the land.

After the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh — who has faced multiple sexual assault allegations and criticism for his angry rebuttal that included sharp criticism of Senate Democrats — cleared a procedural hurdle Friday morning, McConnell and Trump needed to secure 50 GOP votes.

Border Wall Funding Battle Could Dominate Lame Duck
CQ Budget Podcast, Episode 80

Barriers at the southern border. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images file photo)

It's not all 12 as they had hoped, but lawmakers did get five big spending bills signed into law, leaving seven others for the lame-duck session. The president's insistence for border wall funding could take center stage, says CQ appropriations reporter Jennifer Shutt.

Republicans Likely in for a Messy December Funding, Leadership Fight

Budget Overhaul Panel Dances With Deadline
Womack and Lowey have a lot to work out before November — like when the fiscal year will start

Rep. Steve Womack and his fellow budget process reformers have a lot of ground to cover this fall. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A special bicameral panel established to try to overhaul the annual budget process won’t reach a final agreement before the House leaves on Friday for its six-week midterm election break. But its members will meet privately one more time before the lame duck session to discuss various proposals that could become part of a final bill.

“With regards to timeline, the two co-chairs will not complete work on a joint proposal in the three legislative days remaining this month, so the end of September timeline will not be met,” according to Evan Hollander, a spokesman for Rep. Nita M. Lowey. The New York Democrat is co-chairwoman of the Joint Select Committee on Budget and Appropriations Process Reform, alongside co-chairman Steve Womack, an Arkansas Republican, who had pushed for a deal by the end of this month.

FAA Passage Likely, But Timing Unclear in Senate as Deadline Looms
The current Federal Aviation Administration authorization ends on Sunday

Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., told CQ that weekend work is possible if Senate can't get to FAA bill by Friday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Even after lawmakers in both chambers took a major step toward a long-term Federal Aviation Administration authorization over the weekend, the path to enactment before a Sunday deadline remains uncertain as several other important votes jockey for floor time in the Senate.

The House is scheduled to vote this week on the five-year bill, which members of the House and Senate from both parties agreed to early Saturday morning, but the Senate schedule is less certain.

Fiscal Year Ends With Unclear Path for Government Funding
CQ Budget Podcast, Episode 79

The Capitol Dome. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)