February 3, 2017
The Agenda 2017
The Trump Administration is two weeks old and the President is delivering on his promises; none so much so as to make waves in Washington, D.C. However, those waves have been largely limited to executive actions – using his phone and his pen. Working with Congress is another story, and while the Vice President’s office is on its way to full staff, the White House legislative affairs office still lacks a House or Senate Deputy.
The confirmation process always tests the Senate’s bandwidth and has been particularly slow this year due to Senate Democrats expressing their discontent, but there is a long way to go with hundreds of nominations and confirmations still to come before this process is complete. The nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court adds another front in the partisan battles and an additional workload strain in the Senate. In case you missed it, my colleagues Mark Disler and Paul Brown shared insights on this particular act in the play.
The “100 Day” rubric is an artifice. Vice President Pence led the transition based on a “200 Day” calendar. Looking at 2017 is a much more useful frame of reference for the rest of us. Healthcare Reform and Tax Reform still top the agenda in Washington. Clichés are clichés for a reason and the devil is always in the details, just like governing is harder than campaigning.
House GOP Leadership distributed to their members a calendar of deadlines and goals that will drive part of the agenda from Capitol Hill (reproduced below for you). This list denotes some hard deadlines, like the expiration of the current Continuing Resolution (4/28/2017). It also reflects targets for action, like FY2018 National Defense Authorization for consideration in the House in June.
Beyond throughput limitations on work product, a president’s agenda is always impacted by events that arise, which will require adjustment of priorities.
|FY2017 Budget||January||FY2018 Budget||April|
|FY2017 Reconciliation||March||FY2017 Appropriations/Funding||April 28, 2017|
|Border/Defense Supplemental||March/April||FY2018 Reconciliation||May-July|
|FDA User Fees||June|
|FY2018 NDAA (House)||June|
|CHIP Reauthorization||July||FISA Section 702 Expires||December 31, 2017|
|FAA Reauthorization||September 30, 2017|
|Flood Insurance Reauthorization||September 30, 2017|
|Fiscal Year Ends||September 30, 2017|