WEEK OF JANUARY 3RD
THURSDAY, JANUARY 3RD
On Thursday, the 115th Congress will meet at 11:00 a.m. for legislative business and adjourn sine die.
The House will convene for the start of the 116th Congress at 12:00 p.m. There will be a recorded quorum call at 12:00 p.m. following the Prayer and Pledge of Allegiance. Last votes expected: TBD.
Election of the Speaker of the House
Swearing-in of Members and Delegates
Begin Consideration of H.Res. 6 – Adopting the Rules of the House for the One Hundred Sixteenth Congress – Title I (Subject to a Rule) (Sponsored by Rep. Steny Hoyer)
H.R. 21 – Making appropriations for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2019, and for other purposes (Subject to a Rule) (Sponsored by Rep. Nita Lowey / Appropriations Committee)
H.J.Res. 1 – Making further continuing appropriations for the Department of Homeland Security for fiscal year 2019, and for other purposes (Subject to a Rule) (Sponsored by Rep. Nita Lowey / Appropriations Committee)
FRIDAY, JANUARY 4TH
On Friday, the House will meet at 9:00 a.m. for legislative business. Last votes expected no later than 3:00 p.m.
Continue Consideration of H.Res. 6 – Adopting the Rules of the House for the One Hundred Sixteenth Congress – Title II (Subject to a Rule) (Sponsored by Rep. Steny Hoyer)
Possible Consideration of Legislation Making Further Appropriations for FY19
Committee activity for the week of January 3 can be found here.
Source: The Leader’s Weekly Schedule – Week of 1/3/18
When Democrats take over the House of Representatives they will have to strike a balance between legislation and investigation. As much as some are advising Democrats to build a legislative record, Democrats will also find themselves faced with the need to take up multiple investigations. And so it makes sense to have a look at Congress’s investigatory power and history.
A good place to begin is with a new book by Elise J. Bean, Financial Exposure: Carl Levin’s Senate Investigations into Finance and Tax Abuse. Bean is an attorney who joined the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations (known as PSI) in 1985 and worked for Senator Carl Levin (D-Mich.) until he retired in 2015. She has written a timely history of congressional investigations.
Source: Congress in 2019: A brief history of congressional investigations
Bristol-Myers pioneered immunotherapy with its Yervoy and later Opdivo, but has come under pressure as Merck & Co’s (MRK.N) rival treatment Keytruda moved ahead in market share in lung cancer treatment, the most lucrative oncology market.
The deal will create a company with nine treatments bringing in more than $1 billion in annual sales and a significant potential for growth in oncology, immunology and inflammation and cardiovascular disease.
Source: Bristol-Myers bulks up cancer portfolio with $74 billion Celgene deal | Reuters
Elaborate negotiations take tenacity, expertise and planning. They also take time.
There are certainly real challenges in the U.S.-China relationship. And virtually all progress Washington makes with its Chinese counterparts has come from an intense series of talks.
At one point in the negotiations to allow U.S. beef access into Chinese markets, for example, the battle was down to experts debating a final letter – whether or not to include the letter “s” at the end of the word cow to determine traceability requirements for American cattle.
But this approach works. From these agreements and countless other negotiations, clear lessons emerge. Here are some of them …
Source: Commentary: How to handle the U.S.-China trade talks | Reuters
The landing is the latest step for China in its race to catch up with Russia and the United States and become a major space power by 2030. Beijing plans to launch construction of its own manned space station next year.
While China has insisted its ambitions are purely peaceful, the U.S. Defense Department has accused it of pursuing activities aiming to prevent other nations from using space-based assets during a crisis.
Besides its civilian ambitions, China has tested anti-satellite missiles and the U.S. Congress has banned NASA from two-way cooperation with its Chinese counterpart over security concerns.
Source: China ‘lifts mysterious veil’ by landing probe on far side of the moon
Passage of the bill by the new Democratic majority was expected to occur shortly after Nancy Pelosi is elected speaker of the House, returning the liberal from San Francisco to one of Washington’s most powerful posts for a second time.
But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Wednesday his chamber, still in Republican hands, would not vote on the legislation, calling it a “political sideshow” and “total nonstarter.”
Source: Democrats to push shutdown halt that Trump unlikely to accept | Reuters
The news, which comes as a spotlight grows on Beijing’s attempts to revive stalling growth, sent Apple shares tumbling in after-hours trade, hammered Asian suppliers and triggered a broader selloff in global markets.
The revenue drop for the just-ended quarter underscores how an economic slowdown in China has been sharper than many expected, catching companies and leaders in Beijing off balance and forcing some to readjust their plans in the market.
Source: Apple cuts sales forecast as China sales weaken; iPhone pricing in focus | Reuters
It wasn’t the best start to the new year for Apple.
Right before the closing bell on the first day of trading in the US today (Jan. 2), Apple halted shares to announce that it was cutting its guidance for revenue in the holiday quarter.
In November, when it first announced its guidance for the quarter—traditionally its strongest, as consumers around the world buy phones, computers, tablets as gifts—Apple said it expected to generate between $89 billion and $93 billion for the quarter.
Today, the company said it expects to generate around $84 billion for the quarter, which would be about $4 billion less than it generated in the same period last year.
Source: Apple is lowering its guidance for the quarter, and it’s blaming China — Quartz
China’s Chang’e-4 spacecraft touched down this morning in a crater on the far side of the Moon—a first for space exploration—Chinese state broadcaster CCTV confirmed at noon local time on Thursday (Jan. 3).
Chang’e-4 took off on Dec. 8 local time and spent 26 days in space before landing in the Von Kármán crater, a 186-kilometer-wide (110 miles) region, located in an even larger impact crater called the South Pole-Aitken (SPA) basin that is 2,500 kilometers (1,550 miles) wide. Although Chang’e-4 reached lunar orbit just days after taking off, the solar-powered aircraft had to wait until sunlight returned to the region to land and begin operations.
Source: China just landed a rover on the far side of the Moon — Quartz
“Americans overwhelmingly voted for Democratic control of the House to put a check on Trump on exactly this kind of reckless behavior,” said Charles Chamberlain, chairman of Democracy for America, a grassroots liberal advocacy group.
“Democrats need to stand up for American values and a check on Trump, over and over again, as many times as they have to, to defeat the worst policies of this administration,” he said. “That’s what we’re expecting them to do and if there’s brinksmanship from Trump that causes damage to America, that’s on Trump.”
Source: Democratic leaders face backlash if they compromise on wall | TheHill