Dispatch from the Front: The Week of April 8

President Obama releases his budget on Wednesday. Today, he travels to Connecticut to push for additional gun control laws. After releasing the budget on Wednesday, he meets with 12 GOP senators for dinner. On Thursday, he will award a posthumous Medal of Honor to Army Capt. Emil Kapaun for his service in the Korean War. On Friday, the Midshipmen of the U.S. Naval Academy visit the White House to receive the Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy, which recognizes the Academy’s football victories over Army and Air Force.

The Senate returns today and could spend the week debating gun control legislation.

The House returns on Tuesday and kicks off a light week. One measure the House will likely take up is the Preventing Greater Uncertainty in Labor-Management Relations Act (H.R. 1120), which would prevent the National Labor Relations Board from issuing decisions or rulemakings pending Supreme Court review of the President’s recess appointments to the Board. The Majority Leader’s schedule for the week is available here.

Senate Hearings: TUESDAY—A Judiciary subcommittee holds a hearing on campaign finance laws. The Energy and Natural Resources Committee considers the nomination of Ernest Moniz to serve as secretary of energy. WEDNESDAY—The Commerce Committee holds a hearing on “Expanding the Panama Canal: What Does it Mean for American Freight and Infrastructure?” THURSDAY—The Environment and Public Works Committee considers the nomination of Gina McCarthy to serve as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. The Budget Committee reviews President Obama’s budget proposal.

House Hearings: TUESDAY—An Education and Workforce subcommittee holds a field hearing in Michigan on “Reviving Our Economy: The Role of Higher Education in Job Growth and Development.” An Energy and Commerce subcommittee considers the reauthorizations of the Animal Drug User Fee Act and the Animal Generic Drug User Fee Act. WEDNESDAY—An Appropriations subcommittee conducts oversight of the Small Business Administration. Another Appropriations subcommittee considers “Regulatory Approaches to Foster Economic Growth.” An Energy and Commerce subcommittee considers the Northern Route Approval Act (H.R. 3), which would approve the Keystone XL pipeline. An Education and Workforce subcommittee holds a hearing on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education. An Energy and Commerce subcommittee considers “Our Nation of Builders: Powering U.S. Automobile Manufacturing Forward.” The Small Business Committee examines tax reform as it relates to small businesses. THURSDAY—A Financial Services subcommittee holds a hearing on derivatives. An Energy and Commerce subcommittee considers the Coal Ash Recycling and Oversight Act. The Ways and Means Committee looks at the President’s budget proposal. A Small Business subcommittee examines the implementation of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act. The Budget Committee reviews the President’s budget. FRIDAY—An Energy and Commerce subcommittee reviews the Energy Consumers Relief Act. An Appropriations subcommittee examines the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s budget.

Executive Branch: Secretary of State John Kerry is in the midst of a trip across the Middle East and Asia, with a brief detour to London. Today, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius awards the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award to a number of businesses, including Lockheed Martin in the manufacturing category.

Economic Reports: From The New York Times: “Data to be released include wholesale trade for February (Tuesday); weekly jobless claims and import prices for March (Thursday); and retail sales for March, the Producer Price Index for March, the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index for April and business inventories for February (Friday).”

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