Daily Digest

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Daily Digest

HIGHLIGHTS

    Senate passed H.J. Res. 123, Further Continuing Appropriations Act.

Senate

Chamber Action

Routine Proceedings, pages S7897–S7935

Measures Introduced: Ten bills and seven resolutions were introduced, as follows: S. 2204–2213, S.J. Res. 50, and S. Res. 350–355.
Pages S7929–30

Measures Reported:

S. Res. 150, recognizing threats to freedom of the press and expression around the world and reaffirming freedom of the press as a priority in efforts of the United States Government to promote democracy and good governance.

S. 1901, to require global economic and political pressure to support diplomatic denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, including through the imposition of sanctions with respect to the Government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and any enablers of the activities of that Government, and to reauthorize the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004, with an amendment in the nature of a substitute.
Page S7929

Measures Passed:

Further Continuing Appropriations Act: By 81 yeas to 14 nays (Vote No. 311), Senate passed H.J. Res. 123, making further continuing appropriations for fiscal year 2018.
Pages S7923–25


State of Mississippi Bicentennial: Senate agreed to S. Res. 351, recognizing the bicentennial of the State of Mississippi on December 10, 2017.
Page S7935


National Nurse-Managed Health Clinic Week: Senate agreed to S. Res. 352, designating the week of December 9, 2017, as ``National Nurse-Managed Health Clinic Week''.
Page S7935


Wreaths Across America Day: Senate agreed to S. Res. 353, designating December 16, 2017, as ``Wreaths Across America Day''.
Page S7935

House Messages:

Tax Cuts and Jobs Act: Pursuant to the order of Wednesday, December 6, 2017, on H.R. 1, to provide for reconciliation pursuant to titles II and V of the concurrent resolution on the budget for fiscal year 2018, the Chair was authorized to appoint the following conferees on the part of the Senate: Senators Hatch, Enzi, Murkowski, Cornyn, Thune, Portman, Scott, Toomey, Wyden, Sanders, Murray, Cantwell, Stabenow, Menendez, and Carper.
Page S7925


Grasz Nomination--Cloture: Senate began consideration of the nomination of Leonard Steven Grasz, of Nebraska, to be United States Circuit Judge for the Eighth Circuit.
Page S7925

A motion was entered to close further debate on the nomination, and, in accordance with the provisions of Rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate, and pursuant to the unanimous-consent agreement of Thursday, December 7, 2017, a vote on cloture will occur at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, December 11, 2017.
Page S7925

Prior to the consideration of this nomination, Senate took the following action:

Senate agreed to the motion to proceed to Executive Session to consider the nomination.
Page S7925

A unanimous-consent agreement was reached providing that at approximately 4 p.m., on Monday, December 11, 2017, Senate resume consideration of the nomination.
Page S7935


Willett Nomination--Cloture: Senate began consideration of the nomination of Don R. Willett, of Texas, to be a Circuit Judge, United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
Page S7925

A motion was entered to close further debate on the nomination, and, in accordance with the provisions of Rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate, a vote on cloture will occur upon disposition of the nomination of Leonard Steven Grasz, of Nebraska, to be United States Circuit Judge for the Eighth Circuit.
Page S7925

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Prior to the consideration of this nomination, Senate took the following action:

Senate agreed to the motion to proceed to Legislative Session.
Page S7925

Senate agreed to the motion to proceed to Executive Session to consider the nomination.
Page S7925


Ho Nomination--Cloture: Senate began consideration of the nomination of James C. Ho, of Texas, to be United States Circuit Judge for the Fifth Circuit.
Pages S7925–26

A motion was entered to close further debate on the nomination, and, in accordance with the provisions of Rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate, a vote on cloture will occur upon disposition of the nomination of Don R. Willett, of Texas, to be a Circuit Judge, United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
Page S7926

Prior to the consideration of this nomination, Senate took the following action:

Senate agreed to the motion to proceed to Legislative Session.
Page S7925

Senate agreed to the motion to proceed to Executive Session to consider the nomination.
Page S7926

A unanimous-consent agreement was reached providing that notwithstanding the provisions of Rule XXII, the cloture motions filed during today's session ripen at 5:30 p.m., on Monday, December 11, 2017.
Page S7926


Nominations Confirmed: Senate confirmed the following nominations:

By 61 yeas to 38 nays (Vote No. EX. 310), Joseph Balash, of Alaska, to be an Assistant Secretary of the Interior.
Pages S7905–09, S7935

Susan Parker Bodine, of Maryland, to be an Assistant Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.
Pages S7909, S7935


Messages from the House:
Page S7927


Measures Referred:
Page S7927


Measures Placed on the Calendar:
Page S7927


Executive Communications:
Pages S7927–28


Petitions and Memorials:
Page S7929


Executive Reports of Committees:
Page S7929


Additional Cosponsors:
Page S7930


Statements on Introduced Bills/Resolutions:
Pages S7930–34


Additional Statements:
Pages S7926–27


Authorities for Committees to Meet:
Pages S7934–35


Privileges of the Floor:
Page S7935


Record Votes: Two record votes were taken today. (Total--311)
Pages S7909, S7925


Adjournment: Senate convened at 10 a.m. and adjourned at 6:21 p.m., until 4 p.m. on Monday, December 11, 2017. (For Senate's program, see the remarks of the Majority Leader in today's Record on page S7935.)

Committee Meetings

(Committees not listed did not meet)

DOD ACQUISITION REFORM

Committee on Armed Services: Committee concluded a hearing to examine Department of Defense acquisition reform efforts, after receiving testimony from former Representative Heather A. Wilson, Secretary of the Air Force, Mark T. Esper, Secretary of the Army, Ellen M. Lord, Under Secretary for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics, and James F. Geurts, Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development, and Acquisition, all of the Department of Defense.

BUSINESS MEETING

Committee on Finance: Committee ordered favorably reported the nomination of Kevin K. McAleenan, of Hawaii, to be Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland Security.

21ST CENTURY CURES ACT IMPLEMENTATION

Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions: Committee concluded a hearing to examine implementation of the 21st Century Cures Act, focusing on progress and the path forward for medical innovation, after receiving testimony from Francis S. Collins, Director, National Institutes of Health, and Scott Gottlieb, Commissioner of Food and Drugs, Food and Drug Administration, both of the Department of Health and Human Services.

BUSINESS MEETING

Committee on the Judiciary: Committee ordered favorably reported the nominations of Leonard Steven Grasz, of Nebraska, to be United States Circuit Judge for the Eighth Circuit, James C. Ho, of Texas, to be United States Circuit Judge for the Fifth Circuit, Don R. Willett, of Texas, to be a Circuit Judge, United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, Terry A. Doughty, to be United States District Judge for the Western District of Louisiana, Terry Fitzgerald Moorer, to be United States District Judge for the Southern District of Alabama, Mark Saalfield Norris, Sr., to be United States District Judge for the Western District of Tennessee, Claria Horn Boom, to be United States District Judge for the Eastern and Western Districts of Kentucky, John W. Broomes, to be United States District Judge for the District of Kansas, Rebecca Grady Jennings, to be United States District Judge for the Western District of Kentucky, and Robert Earl Wier, to be United States District Judge for the Eastern District of Kentucky.

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INTELLIGENCE

Select Committee on Intelligence: Committee met in closed session to receive a briefing on certain intelligence matters from officials of the intelligence community.

House of Representatives

Chamber Action


Public Bills and Resolutions Introduced: 24 public bills, H.R. 4581–4604; and 7 resolutions, H. Res. 648–654, were introduced.
Pages H9756–57


Additional Cosponsors:
Pages H9757–58


Reports Filed: Reports were filed today as follows:

H.R. 4015, to improve the quality of proxy advisory firms for the protection of investors and the U.S. economy, and in the public interest, by fostering accountability, transparency, responsiveness, and competition in the proxy advisory firm industry (H. Rept. 115–451);

H.R. 4324, to require the Secretary of the Treasury to make certifications with respect to United States and foreign financial institutions' aircraft-related transactions involving Iran, and for other purposes, with an amendment (H. Rept. 115–452); and

H.R. 1638, to require the Secretary of the Treasury to submit a report to the appropriate congressional committees on the estimated total assets under direct or indirect control by certain senior Iranian leaders and other figures, and for other purposes, with an amendment (H. Rept. 115–453, Part 1).
Page H9756


Speaker: Read a letter from the Speaker wherein he appointed Representative Brat to act as Speaker pro tempore for today.
Page H9711


Recess: The House recessed at 11:05 a.m. and reconvened at 12 noon.
Page H9717


Guest Chaplain: The prayer was offered by the Guest Chaplain, Reverend Steven E. Boes, Boys Town, Boys Town, Nebraska.
Page H9717


Journal: The House agreed to the Speaker's approval of the Journal by a yea-and-nay vote of 215 yeas to 205 nays with two answering ``present'', Roll No. 668.
Pages H9717, H9731–32


Recess: The House recessed at 3:40 p.m. and reconvened at 4:14 p.m.
Page H9742


Small Business Mergers, Acquisitions, Sales, and Brokerage Simplification Act of 2017: The House passed H.R. 477, to amend the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 to exempt from registration brokers performing services in connection with the transfer of ownership of smaller privately held companies, by a yea-and-nay vote of 426 yeas with none voting ``nay'', Roll No. 669.
Pages H9739–42, H9742–43

Pursuant to the Rule, an amendment in the nature of a substitute consisting of the text of Rules Committee Print 115–43 shall be considered as adopted.
Page H9722

Agreed to:

Sherman amendment (No. 1 printed in part A of H. Rept. 115–443) that makes several changes that provide additional protections for investors and small businesses, which will align the bill with a Securities and Exchange Commission no-action letter issued January 31, 2014; specifically the amendment includes provisions that would prohibit passive buyers in the M&A transaction, prohibit M&A brokers from binding a party to a transfer of ownership, prohibit M&A brokers from providing financing for the transfer, and require M&A brokers that represent both the buyer and seller to disclose that to both parties and receive written consent.
Pages H9741–42

H. Res. 647, the rule providing for consideration of the bills (H.R. 477) and (H.R. 3971) and the joint resolution (H.J. Res. 123) was agreed to by a yea-and-nay vote of 238 yeas to 188 nays, Roll No. 666, after the previous question was ordered by a yea-and-nay vote of 236 yeas to 190 nays, Roll No. 665.
Pages H9722–30


Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2018: The House passed H.J. Res. 123, making further continuing appropriations for fiscal year 2018, by a yea-and-nay vote of 235 yeas to 193 nays, Roll No. 670.
Pages H9722–39, H9743

H. Res. 647, the rule providing for consideration of the bills (H.R. 477) and (H.R. 3971) and the joint resolution (H.J. Res. 123) was agreed to by a yea-and-nay vote of 238 yeas to 188 nays, Roll No. 666, after the previous question was ordered by a yea-and-nay vote of 236 yeas to 190 nays, Roll No. 665.
Pages H9722–30


Suspensions-Proceedings Resumed: The House agreed to suspend the rules and pass the following measures. Consideration began Tuesday, December 5th.
Expressing concern and condemnation over the political, economic, social, and humanitarian crisis in Venezuela: H. Res. 259, amended, expressing concern and condemnation over the political, economic, social, and humanitarian crisis in Venezuela, by a \2/3\ yea-and-nay vote of 419 yeas to 8 nays, Roll No. 667; and
Pages H9730–31


Venezuela Humanitarian Assistance and Defense of Democratic Governance Act of 2017: H.R. 2658, amended, to provide humanitarian assistance for the Venezuelan people, to defend democratic governance and combat widespread public corruption in Venezuela, by a \2/3\ yea-and-nay vote of 388 yeas to 29 nays, Roll No. 671.
Pages H9745–46


Admiral Lloyd R. ``Joe'' Vasey Pacific War Commemorative Display Establishment Act: The House agreed to take from the Speaker's table and pass H.R. 4300, to authorize Pacific Historic Parks to establish a commemorative display to honor members of the United States Armed Forces who served in the Pacific Theater of World War II.
Page H9746


Meeting Hour: Agreed by unanimous consent that when the House adjourns today, it adjourn to meet at 12 noon on Monday, December 11th for Morning Hour debate.
Page H9746


Senate Message: Message received from the Senate today appears on page H9755.

Quorum Calls--Votes: Seven yea-and-nay votes developed during the proceedings of today and appear on pages H9729, H9730, H9730, H9731, H9742, H9743, and H9745. There were no quorum calls.

Adjournment: The House met at 10 a.m. and adjourned at 6:46 p.m.

[Page:D1297]

Committee Meetings

THE MISSION OF THE U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

Committee on Energy and Commerce: Subcommittee on Environment held a hearing entitled ``The Mission of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency''. Testimony was heard from Scott Pruitt, Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency.

EXAMINING THE OFFICE OF FINANCIAL RESEARCH

Committee on Financial Services: Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing entitled ``Examining the Office of Financial Research''. Testimony was heard from Richard Berner, Director, Office of Financial Research, Department of the Treasury.

LEGISLATIVE MEASURES

Committee on Financial Services: Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit held a hearing entitled ``Legislative Proposals for a More Efficient Federal Financial Regulatory Regime: Part II''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.

COUNTERTERRORISM EFFORTS IN AFRICA

Committee on Foreign Affairs: Full Committee held a hearing entitled ``Counterterrorism Efforts in Africa''. Testimony was heard from John J. Sullivan, Deputy Secretary, Department of State; and David J. Trachtenberg, Acting Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, Department of Defense.

EXAMINING THE DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY'S EFFORTS TO COUNTER WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION

Committee on Homeland Security: Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Communications held a hearing entitled ``Examining the Department of Homeland Security's Efforts to Counter Weapons of Mass Destruction''. Testimony was heard from James F. McDonnell, Assistant Secretary, Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction and Director, Domestic Nuclear Detection Office, Department of Homeland Security; William Bryan, Acting Under Secretary, Science and Technology Directorate, Department of Homeland Security; and Chris P. Currie, Director, Emergency Management, National Preparedness, and Critical Infrastructure Protection, Homeland Security and Justice Team, Government Accountability Office.

PREVENTING SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN THE CONGRESSIONAL WORKPLACE: EXAMINING REFORMS TO THE CONGRESSIONAL ACCOUNTABILITY ACT

Committee on House Administration: Full Committee held a hearing entitled ``Preventing Sexual Harassment in the Congressional Workplace: Examining Reforms to the Congressional Accountability Act''. Testimony was heard from Victoria A. Lipnic, Acting Chair, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; Susan Tsui Grundmann, Executive Director, Office of Compliance; Gloria Lett, Counsel, Office of House Employment Counsel; and a public witness.

OVERSIGHT OF THE FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION

Committee on the Judiciary: Full Committee held a hearing entitled ``Oversight of the Federal Bureau of Investigation''. Testimony was heard from Christopher Wray, Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation.

[Page:D1298]

TRANSFORMING THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR FOR THE 21ST CENTURY

Committee on Natural Resources: Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing entitled ``Transforming the Department of the Interior for the 21st Century''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.

LEGISLATIVE MEASURES

Committee on Natural Resources: Subcommittee on Federal Lands held a hearing on H.R. 805, the ``Tulare Youth Recreation and Women's History Enhancement Act''; H.R. 1349, to amend the Wilderness Act to ensure that the use of bicycles, wheelchairs, strollers, and game carts is not prohibited in Wilderness Areas, and for other purposes; H.R. 3371, the ``Modoc County Land Transfer and Economic Development Act of 2017''; and H.R. 3961, the ``Kissimmee River Wild and Scenic River Study Act of 2017''. Testimony was heard from Representatives McClintock, LaMalfa, and Soto; Glenn Casamassa, Associate Deputy Chief, U.S. Forest Service; Elizabeth Cavasso, Supervisor, District 4, County of Modoc, Alturas, California; Maritsa Castellanoz, Vice Mayor, City of Tulare, California; and public witnesses.

OVERSIGHT OF IT AND CYBERSECURITY AT THE DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS

Committee on Oversight and Government Reform: Subcommittee on Information Technology held a hearing entitled ``Oversight of IT and Cybersecurity at the Department of Veterans Affairs''. Testimony was heard from Scott Blackburn, Acting Chief Information Officer, Department of Veteran Affairs; Dominic Cussatt, Chief Information Security Officer, Department of Veteran Affairs; and David A. Powner, Director, IT Management Issues, Government Accountability Office.

NEW NAMES, SAME PROBLEMS: THE VA MEDICAL SURGICAL PRIME VENDOR PROGRAM

Committee on Veterans' Affairs: Full Committee held a hearing entitled ``New Names, Same Problems: The VA Medical Surgical Prime Vendor Program''. Testimony was heard from Ricky Lemmon, Acting Chief Procurement and Logistics Officer, Veterans Health Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs; Shelby Oakley, Director, Acquisition and Sourcing Management, Government Accountability Office; and a public witness.

Joint Meetings



No joint committee meetings were held.

COMMITTEE MEETINGS FOR MONDAY,

DECEMBER 11, 2017

(Committee meetings are open unless otherwise indicated)

Senate

Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry: business meeting to consider the nomination of Stephen Alexander Vaden, of Tennessee, to be General Counsel of the Department of Agriculture, 5:45 p.m., S–216, Capitol.

House

No hearings are scheduled.

Next Meeting of the
SENATE

4 p.m., Monday, December 11

Senate Chamber

Program for Monday: Senate will resume consideration of the nomination of Leonard Steven Grasz, of Nebraska, to be United States Circuit Judge for the Eighth Circuit, and vote on the motion to invoke cloture thereon at 5:30 p.m.

Next Meeting of the
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

12 noon, Monday, December 11

House Chamber

Program for Monday: To be announced.

[Page:D1299]





Extensions of Remarks, as inserted in this issue








HOUSE


Beatty, Joyce, Ohio, E1670, E1675

Bishop, Sanford D., Jr., Ga, E1667

Brooks, Susan W., Ind., E1673, E1675

Brown, Anthony G., Md., E1674

Cartwright, Matt, Pa., E1667

Correa, J. Luis, Calif., E1675

Dunn, Neal P., Fla., E1671

Ellison, Keith, Minn., E1671

Flores, Bill, Tex., E1670

Graves, Garret, La., E1668

Grijalva, Raúl M., Ariz., E1675

Gutiérrez, Luis V., Ill., E1669

Hudson, Richard, N.C., E1674

Johnson, Eddie Bernice, Tex., E1670

Kaptur, Marcy, Ohio, E1669

Kildee, Daniel T., Mich., E1670

Long, Billy, Mo., E1671

Maloney, Carolyn B., N.Y., E1667

McNerney, Jerry, Calif., E1673

Norton, Eleanor Holmes, The District of Columbia, E1673

Pallone, Frank, Jr., N.J., E1669

Panetta, Jimmy, Calif., E1667, E1668

Perry, Scott, Pa., E1668, E1671

Rothfus, Keith J., Pa., E1673

Scalise, Steve, La., E1670

Walorski, Jackie, Ind., E1670

Wittman, Robert J., Va., E1668

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