By Matt Vallone, Director of Research & Analysis
Main Story: Tax Reform Moves Forward While NDAA Negotiations Continue
Tax reform will be the dominant story this week as Republicans in both the House and the Senate look to continue their work on planned tax reform. In the House, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) will look to move his legislation through the committee, setting up a floor vote the week of November the 17th. In the Senate, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) will introduce his version of tax reform on Friday, with the goal of moving legislation prior to Thanksgiving. Both chambers are hoping to have their bills completed quickly so as to increase the odds of having legislation on the President’s desk prior to Christmas. So far the House plan has been received favorably by members, though opposition from the National Association of Home Builders and the National Federation of Independent Businesses may have to be addressed to ensure passage. It should be a relatively short week, as both chambers will recess on Thursday to have Veterans’ Day off.
On the defense front, Politico’s Morning Defense is reporting that House and Senate negotiations around the National Defense Authorization Act are largely wrapping up, putting the legislation on track for passage some time prior to Christmas. Details aren’t out yet, but it will be interesting to see if the legislation will wait on a potential budget deal to receive a topline.
House Activity – The House has a relatively quiet week as, after various suspension bills are considered, it will take up legislation on hydropower, remove regulation on various financial transactions, and amend the Fair Labor Standards Act.
Senate Activity – The Senate will keep working on nominations, primarily for less controversial positions at the Department of Justice, the EPA, NLRB, and the Department of Transportation. DoD will get a new Deputy Chief Management Officer when John Gibson is confirmed.
- 11/7 Nominations, Full Committee Hearing, SD-G50 Dirksen, 10am
- 11/9 Nominations, Full Committee Hearing, SD-G50 Dirksen, 10am
- HASC – 11/9 ‘Aviation Readiness: What’s the Flight Plan?’, Full Committee Hearing, 2212 Rayburn, 1030am
- HAC-D – No hearings this week
- SAC-D – No hearings this week
Government Activity Round-Up
The CBO has released a major study of the cost of America’s nuclear deterrent. ‘Approaches for Managing the Costs of U.S. Nuclear Forces, 2017 to 2046’ provided a long-term estimate of the cost to update and maintain our nuclear forces. CBO estimates that the current plan (based on the Obama administration’s FY17 proposals) would cost $1.2 trillion between 2017 and 2046. More details in the full report in what is certainly to be a controversial overview.
One interesting report from GAO this week, as they looked at the long-term status of the nation’s sealift and combat logistics fleets. Current trends would see a major decline in capacity between now and 2035. The Navy is working on a plan to address this, but the report will serve to highlight the issues that are already arising from the aging of these fleets. Full report here.
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