The Week Ahead: The Week of February 4

By February 4, 2008General

Super Tuesday is Mardi Gras, so laissez les bon temps votez. The House is out until Wednesday to partake in the factionalities, while the Senate considers stimulus and security.

The President’s FY09 budget is released today, the first no-paper E-budget, i.e., stock up on printer cartridges. Go to President Bush also convenes a cabinet meeting this morning.

The House convenes Wednesday at 2 p.m., and on Thursday it will consider H.R.4137, the College Opportunity and Affordability Act. Economic stimulus legislation should consume much debate following Senate action. A schedule for the week is here.

The Senate convenes at 2 p.m. Monday, and could turn to S. 2248, the FISA rewrite. At 5:30 p.m. the Senate will vote on cloture on H.R. 5140, the economic stimulus bill, or rather, Sen. Baucus’ version. Expect maneuvers on unemployment benefits, food stamps and Low-Income Heating Assistance Program money. The week’s schedule of committee hearings is here.

House hearings: The following House hearings are all on Thursday, except the final listing by House Judiciary. A House Appropriations subcommittee holds a hearing on DOT’s FY09 budget request. Secretary Peters testifies. (Details.) The House Budget Committee reviews the president’s budget request . OMB Director Nussle testifies. Another budget hearing Thursday is the Small Business Committee’s SBA review. A markup that morning by a House Science subcommittee of H.R.3916, on border and maritime security technologies; H.R.4847 and H.R.5161, the “Green Transportation Infrastructure Research and Technology Transfer Act.” (Details.) A House Transportation and Infrastructure subcomittee reviews water and environmental agency budgets. Treasury Secretary Paulson testifies at a Ways & Means Committee hearing on the president’s budget, focusing on tax proposals. The Friday hearing is by the House Judiciary’s Anti-Trust Taskforce on the proposed Microsoft-Yahoo merger.

Senate hearings: OMB Director Jim Nussle testifies Tuesday to the Senate Budget Committee on the FY09 budget. Treasury Secretary Paulson testifies on the budget Tuesday morning to the Senate Finance Committee, and on Wednesday, he talks to the Budget Committee. The Finance Committee hears from HHS Secretary Leavitt on Wednesday. Energy and Natural Resources questions Secretary Bodman at a hearing on the DOE budget Wednesday. Energy and Commerce also holds a hearing Thursday on the energy markets effects of the recent renewable fuel standard. The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hears perspectives on the Surface Transportation Commission Report at a hearing on Wednesday. DOT Secretary Peters testifies. (Details.) On Thursday, the HELP Committee holds a metaphor-rich hearing, “Weathering the Economic Storm: Helping Working Families in Troubling Times.”
Labor Department releases 4th Quarter productive and costs on Wednesday. Other financial reports listed here and this summary includes the list of Fed speaking engagements.

Finance ministers from the G7 countries gather next Saturday in Tokyo. There will be talk about the U.S. economic slowdown and possible effects on global economy. EU activities summarized.

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