U.S. House of Representatives: Oct. 26 – Oct. 30

United States Capitol_ U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate

It’s a week of pressing deadlines in the U.S. House of Representatives because the Speakership must be filled as John Boehner departs the House, the debt limit must be addressed to avoid default and the highway trust fund must be re-authorized in order to continue dispersing money.

First up, the Republican caucus will meet Wednesday to select it nominee to fill the vacancy for House Speaker, with the Speaker’s election by the full House slated for Thursday. Boehner is poised to exit Friday after 24 years in Congress. After weeks of back and forth and turmoil surrounding the Speaker’s race, House Ways and Means Committee chairman and 2012 vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) is expected to emerge as the new House Speaker should all votes go according to plan.

The House is expected to consider legislation to raise or suspend the statutory debt limit. According to the Department of Treasury the United States will run out of borrowing authority by Tuesday, Nov. 3, making a government default is possible unless Congressional action is taken before then.

The House is also likely to consider a short-term extension of the authorization of the Highway Trust Fund (HTF). The HTF has enough money to last into 2016, however, the current authorization to continue disbursing funds expires Oct. 29.

On Monday and Tuesday, the House is in session and will consider several bills under suspension of the rules. A full list of bills can be found here.

Also on the floor this week:

H.R. 597: the Export-Import Bank Reform and Reauthorization Act. The bill is eligible for floor consideration on Monday pursuant to a successful discharge petition, where Democrats and several dozen Republicans who support the bank successfully gathered 218 signatures, bypassing the regular procedure of the Majority Leader bringing a bill to the floor. The bill reauthorizes the official export credit agency of the United States for four years; sets new, lower, lending caps; aims to increase accountability and transparency at the bank; and directs the president to initiate negotiations to reduce and eventually eliminate government export subsidies worldwide. The bank’s charter has previously expired at the end of June.

H.R. 1090: the Retail Investor Protection Act. The bill prohibits the Labor Department from implementing a final rule on fiduciary standards for retirement investment advisers until after the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) conducts a study and issues a final rule setting standards of conduct for broker-dealers.


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