Congressional Policy Issues

Congress in 2018: What’s left?

Josh Huder | March 5, 2018

Last month Congress struck a two-year deal that greases the budget wheels to the tune of an extra $320 billion. While political posturing and two brief government shutdowns hampered bipartisan negotiations, congressional leaders in the House and Senate ultimately settled on a budget that outlines discretionary spending, lifts the Budget Control Act’s(aka sequestration) caps

Victims of Their Own Success

Laura Blessing | December 21, 2017

The Republican Party has become a victim of its own success.  Given their legislative, administrative, and impending electoral challenges, this may sound odd.  But on their biggest policy priority, tax policy, they may have been too successful.  And those previous successes combined with the tax bill passed this week may just imperil their reputation as

Why Tax Reform Is Hard

As we noted in our last newsletter, September was, perhaps, the cruelest month.  A bevy of high stakes deadlines (and potential crises) loomed— many, but not all, were met.  But the real blow to the party in power was the failure to meet a parliamentarian-decreed deadline to repeal and replace

Secrecy in Lawmaking and What it Spells for the rest of the 115th

Josh Huder | July 24, 2017

The House and Senate efforts to repeal and replace versions of the Affordable Care Act have relied on an amazingly convoluted, opaque, and covert process. It was, and is, a stunning display of haste and hubris, well outside the norms of the modern legislative process. Speaker Ryan dropped the American Health Care Act (AHCA) practically

What We’re Reading

GAI | May 9, 2017

We are living in interesting times.  In order to bring you more insight on the issues of the day, we thought we’d send out a sampling of what we’re reading in the office.  There’s a lot going on in addition to the recent budget developments that Josh Huder ably covers in his piece for this

On Congress: A few Farewell Thoughts

Kenneth Gold | January 12, 2017

When the 115th Congress convened last week it was immediately faced with a range of important issues: the promised repeal of Obamacare, the passing of an FY17 budget resolution, proposals for major tax reform, an overhaul of entitlement programs, what to do about the massive federal debt, and a full slate of confirmation hearings in

Looking Towards 2017: National Security in Focus

GAI | December 1, 2016

With the election over and cabinet hopefuls parading to Trump Tower, political prognosticators are looking towards 2017.  What will the incoming presidential administration and unified Republican government mean for policy and politics?  The congressional experts at GAI are weighing in with a series of deeper dives on different subject areas.  Below are the contributions for

Our Kind of War

Katina Slavkova | July 14, 2016

How do we justify our military actions and what is Congress’s role? Legend has it that the late Congressman Charlie Wilson from Texas had managed to singlehandedly defeat the Soviet aggressors in Afghanistan in the 1980s by orchestrating an extraordinary covert operation that took ragged bands of fearless mujahedeen fighters to deliver a

Whither Tax Reform? Chasing the Great White Whale

Laura Blessing | February 7, 2016

Tax reform, particularly genuinely comprehensive tax reform, seems to be the great white whale of American politics.  Given that it tends to occur once a generation, the smart money is always on betting on the reform du jour failing.  And yet, confident rumblings have yet again surfaced–from Speaker Ryan and Ways and

What Does Congress Have on Tap in 2016?

Josh Huder | January 7, 2016

The 114th Congress was a whirlwind of activity compared to its predecessors. Accomplishments like trade promotion authority, a Medicare “doc-fix” solution, a two-year budget deal, and the highway funding act were legislative highlights in a productive first session. In all, the 114th Congress passed 115 laws, the most in a first year of Congress since

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