Politics

Congressional Calendar August 4, 2010

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., makes his party’s last stand on a bill to pass a $26.1 billion state aid package on the floor.  Reid has made several revisions to the bill, including some that may draw the ire of House Democrats, such as a deduction in food stamp payments.  The legislation now meets pay-as-you go requirements, but even that might not be enough to get a Republican to vote for cloture on the bill.  Democrats plan to have a post vote newser at approximately 11:00 a.m. ET to discuss the outcome either way. Senate Republicans continue to warn against allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire, which they say will lead to the largest tax increase in history.  At 2:00 p.m. ET, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., will join members of the small business community who share the lawmaker’s concern that changing tax rates in a sluggish economic recovery will hurt job growth.    A GAO investigation into fraud at the Social Security Administration will be the subject of a Senate Homeland Security subcommittee hearing Wednesday afternoon.  The report found the agency paid out almost $1.7 million a month in improper or fraudulent disability benefits to federal employees.   Energy legislation is on hold until at least September, and Republicans will use the extra time to hone their message on the issue.  Sen. John Cornyn, R-Tex., will be talking about energy legislation at a 10:00 a.m. ET media availability.  We expect him to talk about the need to strengthen the nation’s energy security and the impact the Obama administration’s moratorium on deepwater oil and gas drilling is having on Gulf Coast economies.    The Senate will continue to debate Solicitor General Elena Kagan’s nomination to the Supreme Court.  Reid plans to have a final vote on the lifetime appointment before the end of the week.  There’s bound to be more Hill news as we get closer to the August recess, so stay with Fox News for all the latest.