September 6, 2018 - Issue: Vol. 164, No. 148 — Daily Edition115th Congress (2017 - 2018) - 2nd Session
Daily Digest Section (PDF)
Thursday, September 6, 2018
Majority Party's Membership on Certain Committees: Senate agreed to S. Res. 623, to constitute the majority party's membership on certain committees for the One Hundred Fifteenth Congress, or until their successors are chosen.
Sage-Grouse and Mule Deer Habitat Conservation and Restoration Act: Committee on Environment and Public Works was discharged from further consideration of S. 1417, to require the Secretary of the Interior to develop a categorical exclusion for covered vegetative management activities carried out to establish or improve habitat for greater sage-grouse and mule deer, and the bill was then passed, after agreeing to the following amendment proposed thereto:
McConnell (for Hatch/Heinrich) Amendment No. 4012, in the nature of a substitute.
Tribal Social Security Fairness Act: Senate passed H.R. 6124, to amend title II of the Social Security Act to authorize voluntary agreements for coverage of Indian tribal council members.
Great Lakes Environmental Sensitivity Index Act: Senate passed S. 1586, to require the Under Secretary for Oceans and Atmosphere to update periodically the environmental sensitivity index products of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for each coastal area of the Great Lakes, after agreeing to the committee amendment in the nature of a substitute.
Gold Star Families Remembrance Week: Committee on the Judiciary was discharged from further consideration of S. Res. 522, designating the week of September 23 through September 29, 2018 as ``Gold Star Families Remembrance Week'', and the resolution was then agreed to.
School Bus Safety Month: Committee on the Judiciary was discharged from further consideration of S. Res. 603, designating September 2018 as ``School Bus Safety Month'', and the resolution was then agreed to.
National Child Awareness Month: Committee on the Judiciary was discharged from further consideration of S. Res. 612, designating September 2018 as ``National Child Awareness Month'' to promote awareness of charities that benefit children and youth-serving organizations throughout the United States and recognizing the efforts made by those charities and organizations on behalf of children and youth as critical contributions to the future of the United States, and the resolution was then agreed to.
Commemorating Arthur Ashe: Senate agreed to S. Res. 624, commemorating Arthur Ashe, a native of Richmond, Virginia, on the 50th anniversary of his historic win at the 1968 U.S. Open Tennis Championship and honoring his humanitarian contributions to civil rights, education, the movement against apartheid in South Africa, and HIV/AIDS awareness.
Sports Medicine Licensure Clarity Act: Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions was discharged from further consideration of H.R. 302, to provide protections for certain sports medicine professionals who provide certain medical services in a secondary State, and the bill was then passed, after agreeing to the following amendment proposed thereto:
McConnell (for Alexander) Amendment No. 4014, in the nature of a substitute.
Interior, Environment, Financial Services and General Government, Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Act: Senate insisted on its amendment to H.R. 6147, making appropriations for the Department of the Interior, environment, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2019, agreed to the request for a conference with the House thereon, and the Chair was authorized to appoint the following conferees on the part of the Senate: Senators Murkowski, Collins, Lankford, Hoeven, Shelby, Hyde-Smith, Udall, Reed, Coons, Merkley, and Leahy.
Department of Defense and Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Act: Senate insisted on its amendment to H.R. 6157, making appropriations for the Department of Defense for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2019, agreed to the request for a conference with the House thereon, and the Chair was authorized to appoint the following conferees on the part of the Senate: Senators Shelby, Blunt, Graham, Moran, Durbin, Murray, and Leahy.
Patient Right to Know Drug Prices Act--Agreement: A unanimous-consent-time agreement was reached providing that at a time to be determined by the Majority Leader in consultation with the democratic leader, Senate begin consideration of S. 2554, to ensure that health insurance issuers and group health plans do not prohibit pharmacy providers from providing certain information to enrollees, and that Senator Lee, or his designee, be recognized to call up Amendment No. 4011, and that there be one hour of debate equally divided, and that upon the use or yielding back of time, Senate vote on or in relation to Lee Amendment No. 4011, without intervening action or debate; and that upon disposition of Lee Amendment No. 4011, Senate vote on passage of the bill, as amended, if amended.
Support for Patients and Communities Act--Agreement: A unanimous-consent-time agreement was reached providing that at a time to be determined by the Majority Leader, in consultation with the democratic leader, Senate begin consideration of H.R. 6, to provide for opioid use disorder prevention, recovery, and treatment, and that Senator Alexander, or his designee, be recognized to call up Amendment No. 4013, and that there be one hour of debate, equally divided, and that upon the use or yielding back of that time, Alexander Amendment No. 4013, be agreed to, and Senate vote without intervening action or debate, on passage of the bill, as amended.
Pro Forma Sessions--Agreement: A unanimous-consent agreement was reached providing that the Senate adjourn, to then convene for pro forma sessions only, with no business being conducted on the following dates and times, and that following each pro forma session, the Senate adjourn until the next pro forma session: Friday, September 7, 2018 at 9 a.m.; Tuesday, September 11, 2018 at 5 p.m.; and that when the Senate adjourns on Tuesday, September 11, 2018, it next convene at 3 p.m., on Wednesday, September 12, 2018.
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, September 6, 2018, a vote on cloture will occur at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, September 12, 2018.
Prior to the consideration of this nomination, Senate took the following action:
Senate agreed to the motion to proceed to Legislative Session.
Senate agreed to the motion to proceed to Executive Session to consider the nomination.
A unanimous-consent agreement was reached providing that Senate resume consideration of the nomination at approximately 3 p.m., on Wednesday, September 12, 2018; and that notwithstanding the provisions of Rule XXII, the cloture motion on the nomination ripen at 5:30 p.m.
Nominations Confirmed: Senate confirmed the following nominations:
Michael A. Hammer, of Maryland, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, to be Ambassador to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Dereck J. Hogan, of Virginia, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Moldova.
Philip S. Kosnett, of Virginia, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Kosovo.
Stephanie Sanders Sullivan, of Maryland, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Ghana.
Randy W. Berry, of Colorado, to be Ambassador to the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal.
Donald Lu, of California, to be Ambassador to the Kyrgyz Republic.
Alaina B. Teplitz, of Colorado, 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.
Nominations Received: Senate received the following nominations:
William Shaw McDermott, of Massachusetts, to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority for a term expiring May 30, 2024.
Raymond David Vela, of Texas, to be Director of the National Park Service.
Alexandra Dapolito Dunn, of Virginia, to be Assistant Administrator for Toxic Substances of the Environmental Protection Agency.
Dennis Walter Hearne, of Virginia, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Mozambique.
Ron A. Bloom, of New York, to be a Governor of the United States Postal Service for a term expiring December 8, 2020.
Roman Martinez IV, of Florida, to be a Governor of the United States Postal Service for a term expiring December 8, 2024.
1 Air Force nomination in the rank of general.
Routine lists in the Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, and Navy.
Messages from the House:
Executive Reports of Committees:
Authorities for Committees to Meet:
Adjournment: Senate convened at 12 noon and adjourned at 5:35 p.m., until 9 a.m. on Friday, September 7, 2018. (For Senate's program, see the remarks of the Majority Leader in today's Record on page S6105.)
APPROPRIATIONS: BUREAU OF INDUSTRY AND SECURITY, INTERNATIONAL TRADE ADMINISTRATION, AND UNITED STATES INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMISSION
Committee on Appropriations: Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies concluded a hearing to examine proposed budget estimates and justification for fiscal year 2019 for the Bureau of Industry and Security, the International Trade Administration, and the United States International Trade Commission, after receiving testimony from Richard Ashooh, Assistant Secretary for Export Administration, Bureau of Industry and Security, and Nazak Nikakhtar, Assistant Secretary for Industry and Analysis, International Trade Administration, both of the Department of Commerce; and David S. Johanson, Chairman, United States International Trade Commission.
Committee on Armed Services: Committee announced the following subcommittee assignments: Subcommittee on Airland: Senators Cotton (Chair), Wicker, Tillis, Sullivan, Cruz, Sasse, Kyl, King, McCaskill, Blumenthal, Donnelly, Warren, and Peters. Subcommittee on Cybersecurity: Senators Rounds (Chair), Fischer, Perdue, Graham, Sasse, Nelson, McCaskill, Gillibrand, and Blumenthal. Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities: Senators Ernst (Chair), Wicker, Fischer, Perdue, Cruz, Scott, Heinrich, Nelson, Shaheen, and Peters. Subcommittee on Personnel: Senators Tillis (Chair), Ernst, Graham, Sasse, Gillibrand, McCaskill, and Warren. Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support: Senators Sullivan (Chair), Rounds, Ernst, Perdue, Kaine, Shaheen, and Hirono.
Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs: Committee concluded a hearing to examine outside perspectives on Russia sanctions, focusing on current effectiveness and potential for next steps, including S. 2313, to deter foreign interference in United States elections, after receiving testimony from Heather A. Conley, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Rachel Ziemba, Center for a New American Security, and Daniel Fried, all of Washington, D.C.; and Michael McFaul, Stanford University Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Glasgow, Montana.
Committee on Environment and Public Works: Subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure concluded a hearing to examine the nomination of Harold B. Parker, of New Hampshire, to be Federal Cochairperson of the Northern Border Regional Commission, after the nominee, who was introduced by Senator Shaheen, testified and answered questions in his own behalf.
Committee on the Judiciary: Committee held a hearing to examine the nomination of Brett M. Kavanaugh, of Maryland, to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. The nominee testified in his own behalf. Hearing recessed subject to the call and will meet again on Friday, September 7, 2018.
House of Representatives
Report Filed: A report was filed today as follows:
Speaker: Read a letter from the Speaker wherein he appointed Representative Valadao to act as Speaker pro tempore for today.
Recess: The House recessed at 10:57 a.m. and reconvened at 12 noon.
Guest Chaplain: The prayer was offered by the Guest Chaplain, Reverend Alexander Breckinridge IV, St. Thomas Episcopal Church, Medina, Washington.
Recess: The House recessed at 12:49 p.m. and reconvened at 1 p.m.
Community Safety and Security Act of 2018--Rule for Consideration: The House agreed to H. Res. 1051, providing for consideration of the bill (H.R. 6691) to amend title 18, United States Code, to clarify the definition of ``crime of violence'', and providing for consideration of motions to suspend the rules, by a recorded vote of 225 ayes to 179 noes, Roll No. 387, after the previous question was ordered by a yea-and-nay vote of 224 yeas to 181 nays, Roll No. 386.
Pages H7882–85, H7885–87
Interior, Environment, Financial Services, and General Government Appropriations Act, 2019: The House agreed by voice vote to the Calvert motion to disagree to the Senate amendment and request a conference on H.R 6147, making appropriations for the Department of the Interior, environment, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2019.
Later, the Chair appointed the following conferees: Representatives Frelinghuysen, Aderholt, Simpson, Calvert, Cole, Diaz-Balart, Graves (GA), Young (IA), Rutherford, Lowey, Price (NC), Bishop (GA), McCollum, Quigley, and Pingree.
Ensuring Small Scale LNG Certainty and Access Act: The House passed H.R. 4606, to provide that applications under the Natural Gas Act for the importation or exportation of small volumes of natural gas shall be granted without modification or delay, by a recorded vote of 260 ayes to 146 noes, Roll No. 392.
Pages H7887–94, H7896–H7900
Rejected the Watson Coleman motion to recommit the bill to the Committee on Energy and Commerce with instructions to report the same back to the House forthwith with an amendment, by a recorded vote of 178 ayes to 231 noes, Roll No. 391.
Pallone amendment (No. 1 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–919) that sought to state that on Page 3, line 18, insert ``after opportunity for hearing and public input,'' after ``delay'' (by a recorded vote of 176 ayes to 227 noes, Roll No. 389); and
DeGette amendment (No. 2 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–919) that sought to require export applications to show that the natural gas to be exported was produced using available techniques to minimize methane emissions from leaks or venting (by a recorded vote of 195 ayes to 210 noes, Roll No. 390).
Quorum Calls--Votes: Two yea-and-nay votes and five recorded votes developed during the proceedings of today and appear on pages H7885–86, H7886–87, H7896, H7896–97, H7897–98, H7899, and H7899–H7900. There were no quorum calls.
Adjournment: The House met at 10 a.m. and adjourned at 7:01 p.m.
PERFLUORINATED CHEMICALS IN THE ENVIRONMENT: AN UPDATE ON THE RESPONSE TO CONTAMINATION AND CHALLENGES PRESENTED
Committee on Energy and Commerce: Subcommittee on Environment held a hearing entitled ``Perfluorinated Chemicals in the Environment: An Update on the Response to Contamination and Challenges Presented''. Testimony was heard from Peter Grevatt, Director, Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, Environmental Protection Agency; Maureen Sullivan, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Environment, Department of Defense; and public witnesses.
EXAMINING FEDERAL EFFORTS TO ENSURE QUALITY OF CARE AND RESIDENT SAFETY IN NURSING HOMES
Committee on Energy and Commerce: Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing entitled ``Examining Federal Efforts to Ensure Quality of Care and Resident Safety in Nursing Homes''. Testimony was heard from John Dicken, Director, Health Care, Government Accountability Office; Ruth Ann Dorrill, Regional Inspector General, Office of Inspector General, Department of Health and Human Services; and Kate Goodrich, Director, Center for Clinical Standards and Quality, and Chief Medical Officer, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
A FAILURE TO ACT: HOW A DECADE WITHOUT GSE REFORM HAS ONCE AGAIN PUT TAXPAYERS AT RISK
Committee on Financial Services: Full Committee held a hearing entitled ``A Failure to Act: How a Decade without GSE Reform Has Once Again Put Taxpayers at Risk''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.
TACKLING FENTANYL: THE CHINA CONNECTION
Committee on Foreign Affairs: Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations held a hearing entitled ``Tackling Fentanyl: The China Connection''. Testimony was heard from Kirsten D. Madison, Assistant Secretary, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, Department of State; Paul E. Knierim, Deputy Chief of Operations, Office of Global Enforcement, Drug Enforcement Administration, Department of Justice; Joseph D. Coronato, Prosecutor, Prosecutor's Office, Ocean County, New Jersey; and public witnesses.
U.S. POLICY TOWARD CUBA
Committee on Foreign Affairs: Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere held a hearing entitled ``U.S. Policy Toward Cuba''. Testimony was heard from Kenneth H. Merten, Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs, Department of State; Peter Bodde, Coordinator, Health Incidents Response Task Force, Department of State; Charles Rosenfarb, M.D., Medical Director, Bureau of Medical Services, Department of State; Todd Brown, Assistant Director for Countermeasures, Bureau of Diplomatic Security, Department of State; and Brian M. Mazanec, Acting Director, International Affairs and Trade, Government Accountability Office.
UNDERSTANDING CYBERSECURITY THREATS TO AMERICA'S AVIATION SECTOR
Committee on Homeland Security: Subcommittee on Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Protection; and Subcommittee on Transportation and Protective Security held a joint hearing entitled ``Understanding Cybersecurity Threats to America's Aviation Sector''. Testimony was heard from public witnesses.
Committee on Natural Resources: Subcommittee on Federal Lands held a hearing on H.R. 5706, the ``World War II Pacific Sites Establishment Act''; H.R. 6108, the ``Preserving America's Battlefields Act''; H.R. 6118, to direct the Secretary of the Interior to annually designate at least one city in the United States as an ``American World War II Heritage City'', and for other purposes; H.R. 6365, the ``Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo Land Claims Act of 2018''; and H.R. 6682, the ``Protection and Transparency for Adjacent Landowners Act''. Testimony was heard from Representative Hanabusa, Pearce, Rouzer, Jody B. Hice of Georgia, and Tipton.
PERMITTING: FINDING A PATH FORWARD
Committee on Oversight and Government Reform: Subcommittee on Intergovernmental Affairs; and Subcommittee on the Interior, Energy and Environment held a joint hearing entitled ``Permitting: Finding a Path Forward''. Testimony was heard from Frank Rusco, Director, Natural Resources and Environment Issues, Government Accountability Office; and public witnesses.
EVALUATING FEDERAL DISASTER RESPONSE AND RECOVERY EFFORTS
Committee on Oversight and Government Reform: Full Committee held a hearing entitled ``Evaluating Federal Disaster Response and Recovery Efforts''. Testimony was heard from William B. Long, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency; Major General Scott A. Spellmon, Deputy Commanding General for Civil and Emergency Operations, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; and a public witness.
AIRSPACE INTEGRATION OF NEW AIRCRAFT
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure: Subcommittee on Aviation held a hearing entitled ``Airspace Integration of New Aircraft''. Testimony was heard from Shelley Yak, Director, Federal Aviation Administration Technical Center; and public witnesses.
A REVIEW OF VA'S SPECIALLY ADAPTIVE HOUSING GRANT PROGRAMS (SAH)
Committee on Veterans' Affairs: Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity held a hearing entitled ``A Review of VA's Specially Adaptive Housing Grant Programs (SAH)''. Testimony was heard from Jeffrey London, Director, Loan Guaranty Service, Veterans Benefits Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs; and public witnesses.
TAX CUTS AND JOBS ACT
Joint Economic Committee: Committee concluded a hearing to examine the positive economic growth effects of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, after receiving testimony from Scott Hodge, Tax Foundation, and William C. Dunkelberg, National Federation of Independent Business, both of Washington, D.C.; John Hinderaker, Center of the American Experiment, Golden Valley, Minnesota; and Benjamin Harris, Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management, Evanston, Illinois.
S. 717, to promote pro bono legal services as a critical way in which to empower survivors of domestic violence. Signed on September 4, 2018. (Public Law 115–237)
Committee on the Judiciary: to continue hearings to examine the nomination of Brett M. Kavanaugh, of Maryland, to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, 9:30 a.m., SH–216.
Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Health, markup on H.R. 3325, the ``ACE Kids Act''; H.R. 3891, to amend title XIX of the Social Security Act to clarify the authority of State Medicaid fraud and abuse control units to investigate and prosecute cases of Medicaid patient abuse and neglect in any setting, and for other purposes; H.R. 5306, the ``EMPOWER Care Act''; legislation to amend title XXVII of the Public Health Service Act and title XVIII of the Social Security Act to prohibit group health plans, health insurance issuers, prescription drug plan sponsors, and Medicare Advantage organizations from limiting certain information on drug prices; legislation on the Strengthening the Health Care Fraud Prevention Task Force Act of 2018; and legislation to amend title XIX of the Social Security Act to provide the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission with access to certain drug rebate information, 9 a.m., 2123 Rayburn.
Committee on Financial Services, Subcommittee on Terrorism and Illicit Finance, hearing entitled ``Survey of Terrorist Groups and Their Means of Financing'', 9:15 a.m., 2128 Rayburn.
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment, hearing entitled ``Building a 21st Century Infrastructure for America: Water Resources Projects and Policy, Part II'', 9 a.m., 2167 Rayburn.
Program for Friday: Senate will meet in a pro forma session.
Program for Friday: Consideration of H.R. 6691--Community Safety and Security Act of 2018.
Beyer, Donald S., Jr., Va., E1213
Bishop, Sanford D., Jr., Ga, E1214
Eshoo, Anna G., Calif., E1216
Esty, Elizabeth H., Conn., E1214
Gianforte, Greg, Mont., E1213
Goodlatte, Bob, Va., E1217
Graves, Sam, Mo., E1213
Huffman, Jared, Calif., E1216
Keating, William R., Mass., E1214
Levin, Sander M., Mich., E1214
Matsui, Doris O., Calif., E1215
Sensenbrenner, F. James, Jr., Wisc., E1216
Shimkus, John, Ill., E1218
Smith, Lamar, Tex., E1217
Stefanik, Elise M., N.Y., E1214
Swalwell, Eric, Calif., E1216
Thornberry, Mac, Tex., E1213
Velázquez, Nydia M., N.Y., E1216
Walorski, Jackie, Ind., E1215
Williams, Roger, Tex., E1213