The Week Ahead: The Week of July 7

By July 7, 2008General

Congress is back after the Fourth of July break, and President Bush is in Toyako, Japan, for the G-8 Summit, where energy and and food prices are topical. A House Financial Services hearing Thursday will make headlines, as Treasury Secretary Paulson and Fed Chairman Bernanke testify on financial regulation and speculation.

The Senate convenes at 2 p.m. today with consideration and cloture anon of H.R.3221, the housing bill. Action is planned — but so is further delay — on H.R. 6304, the FISA Amendments Act. Medicare payments to doctors, recently cut, will receive attention and hammering blows of rhetorical force. Schedules may change for memorial services for the late Sen. Jesse Helms.

The House convenes at 2 p.m. Tuesday, with a spectrum of suspensions. For all the post office namings and commemorations, turns out that the suspension calendar has been used for more substantive measures. (Just not this week, apparently.) On the floor on regular business is H.R. 5811, Electronic Message Preservation Act, and possibly some appropriations measures. The House floor schedule for the week is available from the Majority Leader’s office here.

House hearings: House Agriculture begins hearings Wednesday to review the Commodity Exchange Act. An Energy and Commerce subcommittee holds a hearing Thursday on H.R. 6258, the Carbon Capture and Storage Early Deployment Act. Also Thursday, Financial Services holds a hearing entitled, “Systemic Risk and the Financial Markets” with Secretary Paulson and Fed Chairman Bernanke on tap. On Wednesday, a House Transportation subcommittee reviews state and local regulations on truck lengths and weights.

Senate hearings: On Wednesday, the Commerce Committee examines the privacy implications of online advertising. Senate Banking holds a hearing Wednesday to examine the OTC credit derivatives market. On Thursday, the Clean Air Subcommittee of Environment and Public Works holds oversight hearings on the EPA and implementation of the renewable fuel standard. Also Thursday, Finance considers infrastructure.  A list of Senate hearings is here.

Executive Branch: Secretary of State Rice is in Europe, including a stop in the Czech Republic on Tuesday to sign a missile defense agreement. Treasury Secretary Paulson addresses an FDIC conference on mortage lending on Tuesday. 

Economic Reports: On Friday, the Commerce Department releases the trade deficit for May, and the Conference Board releases consumer sentiment for June. CBS Marketwatch has the week’s economic events listed here.  The European Parliament holds its plenary session, with French President Sarkozy outlining the priority of France’s next six months in charge, and food additives policy on the agenda.  

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