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Policy Briefings: The Agenda Ahead

‘Groundhog Day’ May Be Coming to the Capitol

Policymakers and the people who are paid to follow them will be forgiven if they feel like they’ve been dropped into the movie “Groundhog Day” over the next several weeks: The legislative agenda of early 2010 is probably going to look a lot like the legislative agenda of 2009.

The Economy

Durbin: True Recovery Means Jobs Growth

The experts tell us the U.S. economy started growing again last quarter. They point to positive signs such as the increase in the gross domestic product and an uptick in the Dow Jones industrial average. But the truth is, most American families are still not convinced.

Health Care

Harkin: Congress Is on the Cusp of History

The Senate is on the cusp of passing comprehensive reform of America’s health care system — a goal that has eluded Congresses and residents going back to the administration of Teddy Roosevelt.

Enzi: Common Sense Has Left the Building

Before I came to the Senate, I was a small-business man. My wife and I owned three shoe stores. When I was showing someone a shoe and he said he didn’t like it or couldn’t afford it, I didn’t try another sales pitch. I knew it was time to find another shoe — one he liked and could afford.

Transportation and Infrastructure

Oberstar: Much Unfinished Business Remains

The principal order of business for the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee in 2010 will be completing the unfinished business from 2009. Major legislation to invest in our nation’s surface transportation infrastructure, modernize air traffic control, bring economic development opportunities to distressed areas of the country, improve transportation on our inland waterways, enhance safety in the transport of hazardous materials, and protect our nation’s waters are on the committee’s agenda for next year.

Mica: Congress Dithers as Economy Fails

Congressional efforts to reauthorize the nation’s surface transportation programs have stalled, and the “stimulus” has failed the American people. Unemployment has reached its highest level in over a quarter of a century.

National Security and Defense

McKeon: Demanding Issues Await Hill Action

As the bell tolls on the first session of the 111th Congress, the nation’s attention has returned to national security matters. On Dec. 1, President Barack Obama delivered a long-overdue speech on the strategy America’s brave men and women of the military will pursue in Afghanistan. The commander in chief’s speech was followed by several days of intense action on Capitol Hill as his national security team attempted to sell the strategy to a reluctant Congress.


Boucher: Expanding Access Remains the Goal

The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet had a full agenda in 2009, and we will continue to move at an aggressive pace during the second session of the 111th Congress to foster an environment that allows our nation to continue its leadership in technological innovation, expands broadband usage, and increases the availability of new technological products and services to consumers and businesses. For these reasons, we will focus on:




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