Sarah Ferris, budget and appropriations reporter at Politico, and Bloomberg Government Reporter Roxana Tiron detail the latest congressional priorities, such as the House’s ‘minibus’ and the 2019 NDAA reaching the full Senate.
Congress has a busy month ahead of them. The National Defense Authorization Act is out of committee in the Senate and moving to the full chamber, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) plans to get a head start on 2019 appropriations through “minibuses.” Sarah Ferris, budget and appropriations reporter at Politico, says that the House is about to vote on the first spending package for FY19. “This is several weeks earlier than the first time we saw the package on the floor last year. So, the House Republican leaders are really trying to get things settled before the election,” Ferris said. “We’re going to have energy and water, military construction, VA and legislative branch. Those are the three easiest bills historically in the House. It’s not that controversial…” As for the NDAA timeline, Bloomberg Government Reporter Roxana Tiron says that Senate staff hope to see a vote as early as this week, but the debate might last for some time. “The defense authorization bill on the Senate floor always has sticking points, and it’s always a magnet for all sorts of policy matters or politics.” Tiron told Government Matters. “I think this year, you might see a lot of lobbying, perhaps by the government of Turkey, because the bill prohibits the transfer of F-35 Joint Strike Fighters to Turkey.”