Director’s Desk

Kristin Nicholson | February 3, 2023

Dear Friends,

February may be the dreariest month in Washington, but it will certainly not lack for action this year. It didn’t happen quickly (and surprisingly took even longer in the Senate than the House), but both chambers have finalized their committee rosters, allowing the work of oversight and legislating to kick into higher gear. One small but important change I was pleased to see: the creation of a new House Administration subcommittee to carry on the critical work of the Modernization Committee, which was disbanded at the end of the 117th Congress.

In addition to an ambitious oversight agenda, fiscal issues will be front and center on Capitol Hill for the foreseeable future. Discussions over raising the debt limit are at an early stage, but tensions are sure to rise – along with the stakes – as the weeks tick by. Meanwhile, the annual appropriations process may end up deeply intertwined with debt limit talks as congressional leaders try to forge a path through exceedingly tricky terrain  (and I can’t help but note that four women will be leading the way for the first time this year).

For more on the funding theme, read on for this month’s article from Senior Fellow Josh Huder. Josh looks at promises made by Speaker McCarthy on the budget and appropriations process, and discusses which ones may – and which likely won’t – result in any changes to business as usual on the Hill this year. We’ve also got a great new podcast episode featuring Senior Fellows Laura Blessing and Matt Glassman with their special guest, Georgetown Law’s Josh Chafetz. And don’t miss Josh again in the Washington Post, throwing some cold water on the discharge petition as a silver bullet to the debt limit crisis, and Laura in the New Republic with more on debt limit brinksmanship and the potential off-ramps.

All of us at GAI are excited to be back on our old Hill stomping grounds for in-person classes. Check out our calendar of upcoming training for both in-person and virtual options, or let me know if we can tailor something specifically for your needs.

All the best,


Kristin Nicholson is the Director of the Government Affairs Institute

Categories: Director's Desk, Media Center, Updates