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Kaitlyn McClure is a policy advisor in Covington’s Public Policy Practice, leveraging her experience in government and politics to provide strategic advisory services and support to clients with legislative matters before government agencies and Congress.

Before joining the firm, Ms. McClure was the Associate Vice President of Client Relations at DDC Advocacy. Prior to working for DDC, Ms. McClure served as the strategy assistant for former presidential candidate Governor Mitt Romney. Her experience also includes working in the U.S. Senate as a legislative assistant for Republican Senators John Hoeven of North Dakota and Judd Gregg of New Hampshire.

As we noted at the end of our last weekly column, we intend to write on a monthly basis to outline what to expect in Congress for the next month.  Here we present the first such column. 

Members of Congress will return to Washington, D.C. this week for a four-week work period before the scheduled

Members of the House and Senate are in session for one more week before the planned Memorial Day recess. The House is scheduled to take up a number of bills related to child protection while the Senate continues to work through nominations to the Trump Administration. Outside events, however, are again likely to overshadow the floor activity in either chamber.

President Trump’s firing of FBI Director James Comey and allegations that the President sought to stop the FBI from investigating former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn’s potential ties to Russia remains at the top of the news cycle and threatens to derail Republican efforts to pursue health care and tax reform, among other priorities. Last week, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appointed a Special Counsel, retired FBI Director Robert Mueller, to supervise the Justice Department investigation into any potential ties between the Trump 2016 presidential campaign and Russia. The House and Senate Intelligence Committees have already been investigating Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Press reports indicate that former Director Comey has accepted an invitation to testify in an open hearing before the House Intelligence Committee after the Memorial Day recess. The Senate Committee and House Oversight and Government Reform Committees have been reviewing General Flynn’s conduct and possible connections with Russia. Both committees are now expanding their inquiries to include any relation of the Flynn investigation to the surprise firing of Director Comey. Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), who is resigning from the House at the end of June, has also invited former Director Comey to testify before the full committee at a hearing on Wednesday morning regarding “FBI Independence.” So far Comey has not publicly responded to this invitation from Chairman Chaffetz.

While these congressional investigations and public scrutiny continue, the President departed Washington, DC, last Friday to begin his first official trip overseas to the Middle East and Europe.

During his absence this week, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will be rolling out the Administration’s first full budget blueprint, for Fiscal Year (FY) 2018. The release of President Trump’s budget comes at a much later date than the typical timeline, and the delay, in conjunction with the failure of either chamber to pass a budget resolution, has put the appropriations process well behind schedule. It is largely conceded to be a foregone conclusion that Congress will wind up missing to have any appropriations bills in place by the start of the new fiscal year on October 1. Thus, a continuing resolution is very likely, come the end of the fiscal year. OMB Director Mick Mulvaney will testify before both the House and Senate Budget Committees this week about the President’s FY 2018 budget request, which is expected to include steep expected cuts to domestic spending and increases for military activities. Many of the expected cuts have already drawn Republican opposition, leading many observers to believe the President’s Budget is “dead on arrival.” In addition to Director Mulvaney, other members of the Administration are scheduled to appear before the House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittees throughout the week to discuss their agency budgets in greater detail. Among the cabinet secretaries and agency heads expected on Capitol Hill this week are Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Food and Drug Administrator Scott Gottlieb, and Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin.


Continue Reading This Week in Congress – May 22, 2017

Following their one-week recess, members of the House of Representatives will join their Senate colleagues back in Washington, D.C. this week, where the news of FBI Director James Comey’s sudden dismissal continues to reverberate.  President Trump’s unexpected decision to fire Director Comey dominated the news cycle last week and commanded the attention of the Senate,

After the most significant and dramatic week of the 115th Congress, having kept the government funded through the end of the fiscal year and passed its bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the House is on a scheduled district work period with members working in their districts.  The Senate is the only chamber in

Lawmakers were able to avert a shutdown on Friday by passing a one-week stopgap funding bill to keep the government operational.  This week they are looking to finalize a broader spending package for the remainder of Fiscal Year (FY) 2017, through September 30.  Leaders in both parties and chambers appear to be working through a

After a two-week district work period, members of Congress return to Washington, D.C. this week with a major fiscal deadline looming on Friday.  The current continuing resolution is scheduled to expire at midnight on April 28, leaving the House and Senate very little time to strike a deal to keep the government funded and avert

This week, all eyes will be on the Senate as the chamber prepares for a showdown on President Trump’s nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court, Judge Neil Gorsuch.

The Senate is scheduled to return to legislative business on Monday, when members will vote on S. 89, legislation sponsored by Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Claire

Republican leadership in the House and Senate will need to refocus their efforts this week on their agenda for the 115th Congress, following the failure of the House leadership’s proposal to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) last week when Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) was forced to cancel a much-anticipated

It will be an ambitious week for Republicans on Capitol Hill, where the schedule includes the start of the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Tenth Circuit Judge Neil Gorsuch, and in the House of Representatives a vote is scheduled on the GOP leadership proposal to repeal and replace the Affordable

Much of the attention on Capitol Hill this week will remain focused on activity surrounding the House Republican proposal to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The plan so far has been met with mixed reviews, with a number of Republican members in both chambers expressing their opposition to the legislation in its