Archive from December, 2020

Thursday, December 31, 2020

3:40 p.m. The Senate stands adjourned until 12:00 p.m. on Friday, January 1st. Following Leader remarks the Senate will resume consideration of the Veto message to accompany H.R. 6395, NDAA.

3:37 p.m. ML McConnell began wrap up:

  • H.R. 4044, Protect and Restore America’s Estuaries Act. Passed by voice vote.
  • H.R. 1472, To rename the Homestead National Monument of America near Beatrice, Nebraska, as the Homestead National Historical Park. Passed by unanimous consent.

2:45 p.m. Senator Lee payed tribute to Gary Herbert.

2:22 p.m. Senator Blumenthal spoke on Covid relief.

12:28 p.m. Senator Durbin spoke on Covid relief.

12:15 p.m. Senator Sanders spoke on GOP tax relief for the rich. Senator Sanders asked unanimous consent that at 3:00 p.m. the Senate call up and vote on H.R. 9051, JUSTICE Act. ML McConnell objected.

12:07 p.m. Senator Schumer spoke on the need for $2000 direct payments. H.R. 9051, CASH Act of 2020. ML McConnell objected.

12:03 p.m. ML McConnell moved to proceed to S. 3985, JUSTICE Act
(Just and Unifying Solutions To Invigorate Communities Everywhere Act). ML McConnell spoke on Coronavirus funding.

12:00 p.m. The Senate convened for the day.

*****

The Senate will convene at 12:00 p.m. and resume consideration of the veto message to H.R. 6395, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021.

The Majority Leader filed cloture on the veto message to H.R.6395 during Wednesday’s session of the Senate. Absent other accords, the cloture petition will ripen one hour after the Senate convenes on Friday, January 1.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

5:51 p.m. The Senate adjourned and will reconvene at noon on Thursday, Dec. 31. They will resume consideration of the veto message on H.R. 6395, NDAA. Senator McConnell filed cloture on the veto message. Note: cloture ripens one hour after the Senate convenes on Friday.

5:47 p.m. The motion to proceed to the veto message on H.R. 6395, NDAA was agreed to by a vote of 80-12. Voting no: Senators Braun, Cruz, Hawley, Kennedy, Lee, Markey, Merkley, Paul, Sanders, Van Hollen, Warren, and Wyden. Not voting: Blackburn, Cotton, Gardner, Graham, Jones, Loeffler, Perdue, and Rubio.

5:17 p.m. A quorum was present.

5:00 p.m. The Senate began a live quorum.

4:41 p.m. Senator Reed spoke about the NDAA.

4:36 p.m. Senator Inhofe spoke about the NDAA.

4:15 p.m. Senator Brown spoke about the $2000 payment.

3:50 p.m. Senator Cornyn and Senator Sander spoke about corporate liability.

3:45 p.m. Senator Durbin spoke about the veto override and also about the $2000 payment.

3:43 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke against the $2000 payment.

3:36 p.m. Senator Markey spoke about Covid and also about the $2000 payment.

3:30 p.m. Senator Toomey spoke about why he is against the $2000 payment.

3:21 p.m. Senator Sanders spoke about the $2000 payment.

3:11 p.m. Senator Schumer spoke about Senator Hawley’s intention to contest the certification of electoral college votes, the override of the veto of the NDAA, and the $2000 payment.

3:02 p.m. Senator McConnell spoke about Senator Sanders, the covid relief bill and about the NDAA.

The Senate will convene at 3:00 p.m. Following Leader remarks, the Senate will be in a period of morning business.

At 5:00pm, there will be a live quorum call.  Once a quorum is established, we expect Majority Leader McConnell to ask to lay before the Senate the message on the NDAA veto, at which time there would be a vote on laying the message before the Senate. This is a majority vote threshold.

We expect Majority Leader McConnell to file cloture on the veto message during Wednesday’s session. If no agreement can be reached, the cloture vote would occur 1 hour after the Senate convenes on Friday.

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

3:18 p.m. The Senate adjourned.

3:15 p.m. ML McConnell wrapped up for the day. The following bills had their first reading.

1. S.5085, to increase the additional 2020 recovery rebates, to repeal section 230 of the Communications Act of 1934, and for other purposes.

2. H.R.9051, to increase recovery rebate amounts to $2,000 for individuals

2:09 p.m. Senator Durbin spoke about the defense authorization and the $2,000 relief bill.

1:43 p.m. Senator Inhofe spoke about the defense authorization.

1:28 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke about virus relief and the defense bill.

12:41 p.m. Senator Murphy spoke about the $2,000 relief checks.

12:26 p.m. Senator Markey spoke about the $2,000 relief checks.

12:19 p.m. Senator Sanders spoke about the $2,000 virus relief measure. He sought consent for a vote on the corona measure immediately after a vote on the defense bill veto override. Senator McConnell objected. Senator Sanders objected to Senator McConnell’s consent request.

12:12 p.m. Minority Leader Schumer spoke about the defense bill and the relief measure. He sought consent that Senator McConnell’s request be amended to have the Senate proceed to H.R. 9051, the $2,000-per-person corona relief measure. Leader McConnell objected.

12:09 p.m. Majority Leader McConnell said a veto override vote on the defense authorization will be scheduled for Wednesday. He spoke about the coronavirus relief measure. He said this week “will begin a process” to consider the president’s positions on relief checks and other policies.

He sought consent for a 1:15 p.m. vote Wednesday on S.3985, a measure on policing that Senator Paul has proposed for consideration.

12:01 p.m. The Senate is in a quorum call.

***

The Senate will convene at 12:00 noon and be in a period of morning business. No votes have been scheduled but are possible.

Monday, December 28, 2020

The Senate convened for a pro forma session at 10:00 a.m. Senator Roberts presided and no business was conducted.

Thursday, December 24, 2020

The Senate convened for a pro forma session at 10:00 a.m. Senator Blunt presided and no business was conducted.

Monday, December 21, 2020

1:47 a.m. The Senate stands adjourned until 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, December 24th.

1:46 a.m. ML McConnell announced pro forma sessions on December 24th at 10:00 a.m. and on December 28th at 10:00 a.m. and that the Senate will return on December 29th at 12:00 p.m. Following Leader remarks, the Senate will be in a period of morning business. Votes are possible on December 29th.

1:44 a.m. ML McConnell asked consent to call up nominations en bloc, P.N. 1938, P.N. 2024, P.N. 2101, P.N. 2030 and P.N. 2025.

1:42 a.m. ML McConnell spoke on the NDAA and potential veto override.

12:56 a.m. Senator Boozman asked unanimous consent to call up and pass H.Con.Res. 127, making a correction in the enrollment of H.R. 133. Passed by unanimous consent.

12:56 a.m. Senator Boozman asked unanimous consent to call up and pass H.R. 1492, Yucca House National Monument Expansion Act. Passed by unanimous consent.

12:55 a.m. Senator Boozman asked unanimous consent to call up and pass H.R. 1418, Competitive Health Insurance Reform Act. Passed by unanimous consent.

12:54 a.m. Senator Boozman asked unanimous consent to call up and pass H.R. 2502, Transparency in Federal Buildings Projects Act of 2019. The bill was passed by unanimous consent.

12:52 a.m. Senator Boozman asked unanimous consent to call up and pass H.R. 3153, EFFORT Act with the Wicker substitute amendment was passed by voice vote, as amended.

12:36 a.m. Senator Boozman asked unanimous consent to call up and pass S.Res. 682, A resolution recognizing the devastating explosion that rocked the Port of Beirut on August 4, 2020, and expressing solidarity with the Lebanese people. Adopted by unanimous consent.

12:35 a.m. Senator Boozman asked unanimous consent to call up and pass S.Res. 774, A resolution honoring the United Nations World Food Programme on the occasion of being awarded the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize w/Boozman amend. Adopted by unanimous consent.

11:39 p.m. Passed, 92-6: Motion to concur in the House amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R.133, the legislative vehicle for the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021.

Senators voting against: Blackburn, Cruz, Johnson, Lee, Paul and Scott of FL.

Not voting: Senators Enzi and Rounds.

10:45 p.m. The Senate began a vote on the motion to concur in the House amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R.133, the legislative vehicle for the COVID/Omnibus appropriations bill (60 vote affirmative threshold)

10:45 p.m. The Senate passed H.Con.Res. 128 – 7-day CR by voice vote.

10:44 p.m. The Senate passed by voice vote H.R. 1520, an act to amend the public health service act to provide for the publication of a list of licensed biological products, with an amendment to the Senate amendment.

10:20 p.m. Senator Hoeven, Cramer and Lankford spoke on the wind production tax credit. Senator Hoeven asked unanimous consent
to strike a 1 yr extension of the wind production tax credit from H.R. 133, Omnibus-Covid bill. Senator Wyden objected.

10:13 p.m. ML McConnell asked u.c. that the Senate proceed to up to an hour of debate on concurring in the House amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R. 133, Omnibus-Covid bill (60 vote affirmative threshold).

9:45 p.m. By a vote of 48-47, the Senate confirmed Executive Calendar #904, Eric J. Soskin to be Inspector General, Department of Transportation.

9:28 p.m. The Senate began a roll call vote on confirmation of Cal. #904 Eric J. Soskin to be Inspector General, Department of Transportation.

9:18 p.m. ML McConnell paid tribute to the Offices of the Secretary of the Senate, Parliamentarians, Senate Sergeant at Arms, Architect of the Capitol, Attending Physicians office, Cloakrooms, U.S. Capitol Police and Senate staff.

9:00 p.m. Senator Collins spoke supporting the omnibus/Covid funding legislation.

8:42 p.m. Senator Moran paid tribute to Sheriff Alan Weber.

8:40 p.m. Senator Cantwell spoke about safety management.

8:02 p.m. Senator Casey is speaking on the Russia’s hacking into government agencies. Senator Barrasso spoke on the Covid Omnibus bill.

7:55 p.m. Senator Bur and Tillis ask for unanimous consent to pass legislation recognizing the Lumbee Indians which was objected to.

Senator Booker propounded an unanimous consent agreement to confirm nominations for the State Department which was objected to by Senator Risch. Senator Risch proposed adding confirmation to Senator booker’s list and nomination for Ambassador of Pakistan, which Senator Booker would not agree to.

6:55 The Senate agreed to the motion to reconsider Executive Calendar #904 Eric J. Soskin to be Inspector General, Department of Transportation by a tally of 48-46.

6:23 p.m. The vote on the motion to proceed to the motion to reconsider passed 48-46. The Senate is now voting on the motion to reconsider the cloture vote of the same nomination.

5:40 p.m. Senate now voting on motion to proceed to the motion reconsider the cloture vote of Executive Calendar #904 Eric J. Soskin to be Inspector General, Department of Transportation.

5:06 p.m. Senator Murkowski spoke about Covid vaccines in Alaska and then to discuss “Title Z”, an energy act within H.R. 113, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021.

4:20 p.m. Senator Schumer paid tribute to his staff and Senator Sullivan spoke on the “Alaskan of the Week”.

4:00 p.m. The Senate passed the following bills by unanimous consent:
S. 371, regarding housing relief; H.R. 3250, regarding Interior Department report; H.R. 5472 regarding Jimmy Carter National Park; and H.R. 5126, regarding fishing.

3:45 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke on H.R. 113, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 (Covid and omnibus package).

3:10 p.m. Majority Leader McConnell and Senators Grassley, Thune, Schumer, Durbin, Leahy, Kolbuchar, Tillis, Capito, Paul and Leahy all spoke in regard to H.R. 113, the Covid/Omnibus appropriations bill. The Senate is expected to vote on this legislation today.

3:10 p.m. The Senate passed S.Res 625, encouraging Americans to buy American by unanimous consent. Senator Scott, FL, spoke in favor.

The Senate will convene at 12:00 noon and be in a period of morning business.

There are no votes scheduled at this time, but it is expected the Senate will consider the omnibus/Covid relief package during Monday’s session.

Sunday, December 20, 2020

9:43 p.m. The Senate adjourned.

9:35 p.m. Senator Scott of South Carolina wrapped up for the evening.

7:40 p.m. The Senate is currently in a preriod of morning busniess.

7:10 p.m. The Senate is currently voting on the nomination of Fernando L. Aenlle-Rocha to be United States District Judge for the Central District of California. The nomination was agreed to by a roll call vote of 80-8.

6:15 p.m. Senator Stabenow spoke in favor of  H.R. 4031 and then asked UC for it to be released from committee and agreed to by the Senate.

5:15 p.m. Senator Toomey explained his protest of federal lending attached to the covid legislation.

4:00 p.m.  The Senate is currently voting on the first of two roll call votes relative to the following: 

  1. Confirmation of the nomination of Brian Noland to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority. The nomination was confirmed 84-5.
  2. Cloture on the nomination of Fernando L. Aenlle-Rocha to be United States District Judge for the Central District of California. Cloture was invoked by a vote of 82-7.

2:10 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke about the sense of urgency to complete government funding before midnight tonight.

2:10 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke about the sense of urgency to complete government funding before midnight tonight.

1:30 p.m. The Senate is currently voting on the motion to invoke cloture on Brian Noland, of Tennessee, to be a member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority.  The motion to invoke cloture was approved by a roll call vote of 84-5.

 1:10 p.m. The Senate has resumed consideration of Executive Calendar #758, Brian Noland, of Tennessee, to be a member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority for a term expiring May 18, 2024.

1:05 p.m. Leader McConnell announced there was a deal stuck last night with democrats and Senator Toomey on federal funding. He hopes the Senate will pass covid relief during today’s session.

1:00p.m. Senator Grassley spoke in morning business to express his displeasure at Senate democrats not allowing the new congress to convene on a Monday, instead of Sunday, January 3, 2021.

The Senate will convene at 1:00 p.m. and resume consideration of Executive Calendar #758, Brian Noland, of Tennessee, to be a member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority for a term expiring May 18, 2024.

At 1:30 p.m., the Senate will proceed to a roll call vote on the motion to invoke cloture on the Noland nomination. Please note, further roll call votes are expected during today’s session of the Senate. In addition to the Noland nomination, Leader McConnell has filed cloture on Executive Calendar #591, Fernando L. Aenlle-Rocha, of California, to be U.S. district judge for the central district of California.

Leader McConnell has also entered motions to reconsider the cloture votes on the following nominations:

1. Executive Calendar #712, John Chase Johnson, of Oklahoma, to be inspector general, Federal Communications Commission.

2. Executive Calendar #904, Eric J. Soskin, of Virginia, to be inspector general, Department of Transportation.

Saturday, December 19, 2020

6:48 p.m. The Senate adjourned and will return on Sunday, December 19th at 1:00 p.m. Following Leader remarks, the Senate will resume consideration of the nomination of Brian Noland to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority for a term expiring May 18, 2024.

At 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, the Senate will vote on the motion to invoke cloture on the nomination of Brian Noland to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority. If cloture is invoked on the nomination, there would be up to 2 hours of post-cloture debate prior to a vote on confirmation of the nomination. Following disposition of the Noland nomination, the Senate will vote on cloture on the nomination of Fernando L. Aenlle-Rocha, of California, to be United States District Judge for the Central District of California.

6:41 p.m. Senator Gardner began wrap up:

  • S. 1694, Human Heritage in Space. Concurred in House amendment passed by voice vote.
  • Adopted S.Res. 458, Global repeal blasphemy, heresy, and apostasy laws, w/ Lankford amendments.
  • S. 2204, Data Analytics Robocall Technology Act of 2019. Passed by unanimous consent.
  • Passed H.R. 7898, To amend the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act to require the Secretary of Health and Human Services to consider certain recognized security practices of covered entities and business associates when making certain determinations, and for other purposes.
  • S. 2683, Child Care Protection Improvement Act, concurred in House amendment. Passed by voice vote.
  • Concurred in the House amendments to S. 3989, United States Semiquincentennial Commission Amendments Act/
  • H.R. 5459, Rocky Mountain National Park Ownership Correction Act. Passed by voice vote.

6:43 p.m. The Senate confirmed the nomination of Beth Harwell to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority by a tally of 59-25.

6:01 p.m. The Senate began a roll call vote on confirmation of
Beth Harwell to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority.

5:20 p.m. Senator Toomey asked unanimous consent that at 6:00 p.m. today, the Senate vote on confirmation of Beth Harwell to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority for a term expiring May 18, 2024. Further, at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, December 20th, the Senate will vote on the motion to invoke cloture on the nomination of Brian Noland to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority for a term expiring May 18, 2024.

4:44 p.m. Senator Inhofe spoke on the NDAA and on his 61st wedding anniversary.

4:44 p.m. The Senate invoked cloture on the nomination of Beth Harwell to be a member of the board of the Tennessee Valley Authority by a tally of 61-25.

14 Senators did not vote: Blunt, Burr, Cruz, Enzi, Ernst, Fischer, Harris, Hirono, Loeffler, Paul, Perdue, Portman, Risch and Rounds.

4:16 p.m. Roll call vote began on the nomination of Beth Harwell to be a member of the board of the Tennessee Valley Authority.

4:15 p.m. Cloture was not invoked on the Soskin nomination, on a party line tally of 39-48. Majority Leader McConnell changed his vote to no in order to offer a motion to reconsider.

Senators not voting: 12 Republicans: Blunt, Burr, Cruz, Enzi, Ernst, Fischer, Loeffler, Paul, Perdue, Portman, Risch and Rounds; 1 Democrat: Harris.

3:38 p.m. Roll call vote began on the nomination of Eric Soskin to be Inspector General of the Department of Transportation.

3:37 p.m. Cloture was not invoked on the Johnson nomination, on a party line tally of 39-48. Majority Leader McConnell changed his vote to no in order to offer a motion to reconsider.

Senators not voting: 12 Republicans: Blunt, Burr, Cruz, Enzi, Ernst, Fischer, Loeffler, Paul, Perdue, Portman, Risch and Rounds; 1 Democrat: Harris.

3:15 p.m. Roll call vote began on cloture on the nomination of John Johnson to be Inspector General of the Federal Communications Commission.

3:13 p.m. Senators Cantwell and Wicker spoke on the Johnson nomination.

3:12 p.m. The Dietz nomination was confirmed, 51-36.

Senators in favor: 40 Republicans, 10 Democrats: Booker, Carper, Hassan, Kelly, Manchin, Menendez, Rosen, Sinema, Warner and Whitehouse; 1 Independent: King.

Senators voting against: 35 Democrats, 1 Independent: Sanders.

Senators not voting: 12 Republicans: Blunt, Burr, Cruz, Enzi, Ernst, Fischer, Loeffler, Paul, Perdue, Portman, Risch and Rounds; 1 Democrat: Harris.

2:35 p.m. Roll call vote began on confirmation of the Dietz nomination.

2:17 p.m. Senator Toomey spoke on his federal reserve proposal.

2:01 p.m. Senator Blackburn spoke on covid relief negotiations.

1:44 p.m. Senator Brown spoke on the pension crisis.

12:57 p.m. Senator Leahy spoke on the appropriations process and later the Department of Justice and Attorney General Barr.

12:40 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke on vaccines and Covid relief negotiations.

12:36 p.m. Cloture was invoked on the Dietz nomination to be a judge on the US Court of Federal Claims, 50-37.

Senators voting in favor: 40 Republicans, 9 Democrats: Booker, Hassan, Kelly, Manchin, Menendez, Rosen, Sinema, Warner and Whitehouse; 1 independent: King.

Senators voting against: 36 Democrats, 1 Independent: Sanders.

Senators not voting: 12 Republicans: Blunt, Burr, Cruz, Enzi, Ernst, Fischer, Loeffler, Paul, Perdue, Portman, Risch and Rounds; 1 Democrat: Harris.

11:59 a.m. Roll call vote began on cloture on the Dietz nomination.

11:39 a.m. Democratic Leader Schumer spoke on Covid relief negotiations.

11:04 a.m. Majority Leader McConnell spoke on vaccines and Covid relief negotiations.

11:02 a.m. Senator Grassley spoke on Democrats questioning election results.

11:00 a.m. The Senate convened.

The Senate will convene at 11:00 a.m.

Following Leader remarks, resume consideration of Executive Calendar #895, Thompson Dietz to be a Judge of the US Court of Federal Claims.

At 12:00 noon, the Senate will vote on the motion to invoke cloture on the Dietz nomination.

If cloture is invoked on the Dietz nomination and no further agreement is reached, there would be up to 2 hours of post-cloture debate prior to a vote on confirmation of the nomination. Following disposition of the Dietz nomination, the Senate will vote on cloture on the Johnson nomination (IG FCC).

Additional roll call votes are expected during Saturday’s session.

Cloture has also been filed on the following nominations:

1. Executive Calendar #712, John Johnson to be Inspector General, Federal Communications Commission.

2. Executive Calendar #904, Eric Soskin to be Inspector General, Department of Transportation.

3. Executive Calendar #757, Beth Harwell to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority

4. Executive Calendar #758, Brian Noland to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority

5. Executive Calendar #591, Fernando Aenlle-Rocha to be United States District Judge for the Central District of California

Friday, December 18, 2020

7:10 p.m. The Senate adjourned until Saturday, December 19, 2020. No votes are scheduled.

The Senate passed the following bills in wrap up by unanimous consent: H.R. 6237, regarding Indian healthcare; S. 4079, regarding Seminole Indians; H.R. 5023, naming a V.A. outpost in Youngstown, OH; S. 2174, regarding “Jennifer’s law”; S. Con Res 52 (as Amended); S. 3252, regarding FEMA.

6:59 p.m. The Senate passes a two day Continuing Resolution to fund the government through Sunday, December 20, 2020.

6:49 p.m. No votes have been scheduled but remain possible.

The Senate confirmed by voice vote: Charles A. Stones to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation.

Senators Roberts, Portman and Bennet spoke on the floor.

4:23 pm. No votes have been scheduled yet but remain possible. Senators Stabenow, Sanders, Schumer and Johnson all spoke on Covid relief and stimulus checks.

2:35 p.m. No votes have been scheduled.

Senators Grassley, McConnell, Inhofe, Hawley, Johnson, Tillis, Durbin, Blumenthal, Menendez, Scott, FL, Cornyn and Cruz spoke on the floor during todays session.

10:28 a.m. Senator Inhofe spoke about the significance of December 19th, including it being his 61st wedding anniversary.

10:04 a.m. Majority Leader McConnell spoke about the covid-19 negotiations and paid tribute to departing staffer Phil Maxon.

10:01 a.m. Senator Grassley spoke about a Congressional race in Iowa.

The Senate convened at 10:00 a.m. and resumed consideration of the nomination of Fernando Aenlle-Rocha to be US District Judge for the Central District of California.

No votes are scheduled at this time.

Cloture has been filed on the below nominations, absent any time agreements they will ripen one hour after the Senate convenes on Saturday, December 19th.

 Executive Calendar #895, Thompson Michael Dietz, of New Jersey, to be a Judge of the United States Court of Federal Claims

2. Executive Calendar #712, John Chase Johnson, of Oklahoma, to be Inspector General, Federal Communications Commission.

3. Executive Calendar #904, Eric J. Soskin, of Virginia, to be Inspector General, Department of Transportation

4. Executive Calendar #757, Beth Harwell, of Tennessee, to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority

5. Executive Calendar #758, Brian Noland, of Tennessee, to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority

6. Executive Calendar #836, Charles A. Stones, of Kansas, to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation

7. Executive Calendar #591, Fernando L. Aenlle-Rocha, of California, to be United States District Judge for the Central District of California

Thursday, December 17, 2020

7:02 p.m. The Senate stands adjourned until 10:00 a.m. on Friday, December 18th. Following Leader remarks the Senate will be in Executive session and resume consideration of the Fernando L. Aenlle-Rocha nomination.

6:51 p.m. Senator Braun began wrap up.

  • H.R. 2610, Fraud and Scam Reduction Act with the Wicker substitute amendment. Passed as amended by voice vote.
  • S. 481, Nicholas and Zachary Burt Memorial Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act of 2019 with the Klobuchar amendment was passed by unanimous consent.
  • S. 3248, United States Anti-Doping Agency Reauthorization Act with the Moran substitute amendment was passed by unanimous consent.
  • H.R. 6435, Combating Pandemic Scams Act. Passed by unanimous consent.
  • H.R. 2468, School-Based Allergies and Asthma Management Program Act. Passed by voice vote.
  • S. 1681, Advancing Education on Biosimilars Act of 2019 with the Alexander substitute amendment was passed by unanimous consent.
  • S.Res. 805, providing for staff transition for a Senator if the results of the election for an additional term of office of the Senator have not been certified. Passed by unanimous consent.
  • H.R. 6192, 1921 Silver Dollar Coin Anniversary Act. Passed by unanimous consent.
  • H.R. 1923, Circulating Collectible Coin Redesign Act with the Cortez Masto amendment. Passed by unanimous consent.
  • En bloc consideration of post office naming bills. Passed by unanimous consent.
  • H.R. 6016, To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 14955 West Bell Road in Surprise, Arizona, as the “Marc Lee Memorial Post Office Building”. Passed by unanimous consent.

6:49 p.m. Senator Heinrich asked unanimous consent to concur in the House amendment and pass S. 212, Indian Community Economic Enhancement Act. Passed by voice vote.

6:47 p.m. Senator Heinrich asked unanimous consent to call up and pass S 2165, Safeguard Tribal Objects of Patrimony Act with a Heinrich amendment. The bill as amended was passed by voice vote.

5:31 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke honoring departing Texas members Reps. Thornberry, Hurd, Conaway, Marchant, Flores and Olson.

5:16 p.m. Senator Kennedy spoke on suicide and on the Improving Mental Health Access for Students Act. Senator Kennedy asked unanimous consent to call up and pass, S. 1782, Improving Mental Health Access for Students Act. The bill was passed by voice vote.

5:15 p.m. ML McConnell filed cloture on Executive Calendar #591 Fernando L. Aenlle-Rocha to be United States District Judge for the Central District of California.

5:14 p.m. ML McConnell filed cloture on Executive Calendar #836 Charles A. Stones to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation.

5:13 p.m. ML McConnell filed cloture on Executive Calendar #758 Brian Noland to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority for a term expiring May 18, 2024.

5:12 p.m. ML McConnell filed cloture on Executive Calendar #757 Beth Harwell to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority for a term expiring May 18, 2024.

5:11 p.m. ML McConnell filed cloture on Executive Calendar #904 Eric J. Soskin to be Inspector General, Department of Transportation.

5:10 p.m. ML McConnell filed cloture on Executive Calendar #712 John Chase Johnson to be Inspector General, Federal Communications Commission.

5:06 p.m. ML McConnell filed cloture on Executive Calendar #895 Thompson Michael Dietz to be a Judge of the United States Court of Federal Claims for a term of fifteen years.

4:17 p.m. Senator Murkowski joined Senator Portman on Coronavirus funding.

3:49 p.m. Senator Portman spoke on Coronavirus funding.

3:48 p.m. The Somers nomination was confirmed 52-43.

Senators voting in favor: 48 Republicans, 4 Democrats: Kelly, Sinema, Tester and Whitehouse.

Senators voting against: 41 Democrats, 2 Independents: King and Sanders.

Senators not voting: 4 Republicans: Enzi, Fischer, Loeffler and Perdue; 1 Democrat: Harris.

2:47 p.m. The Senate is voting on confirmation of Executive Calendar #935, Zachary N. Somers to be a Judge of the United States Court of Federal Claims for a term of fifteen years.

2:41 p.m. Senator Peters spoke on Coronavirus funding.

2:35 p.m. Senator Lankford spoke on government shutdowns.

2:14 p.m. Senator Markey paid tribute to Senator Gardner.

1:43 p.m. Senator Brown spoke supporting frontline workers.

1:24 p.m. Senator Blackburn spoke about the need for additional Coronavirus relief and on issues with China and intellectual property rights.

12:48 p.m. Senator Grassley spoke on pension reform and gave staff tributes.

12:47 p.m. The Senate invoked cloture on the nomination of Zachary N. Somers to be a Judge of the United States Court of Federal Claims for a term of 15 years by a vote of 52-42.

Democrats voting in favor: Senators Kelly, Sinema, Tester and Whitehouse.

12:13 p.m. The Senate began a roll call vote on the motion to invoke cloture on Executive Calendar #935 Zachary N. Somers to be a Judge of the United States Court of Federal Claims for a term of fifteen years.

12:12 p.m. The Atchley nomination was confirmed, 54-41.

Senators voting in favor: 48 Republicans, 6 Democrats: Jones, Kelly, Manchin, Sinema, Tester and Whitehouse.

Senators voting against: 39 Democrats, 2 Independents: King and Sanders.

Senators not voting: 4 Republicans: Enzi, Fischer, Loeffler, Perdue, 1 Democrats: Harris.

11:28 a.m. Roll call vote began on confirmation of the nomination of
Edward Atchley to be a Judge for the Eastern District of Tennessee.

11:25 a.m. Democratic Leader Schumer spoke on appropriations and covid-19 negotiations.

11:03 a.m. Majority Leader McConnell spoke on appropriations and covid-19 negotiations.

10:30 a.m. Senator Thune spoke on covid-19 negotiations and paid tribute to departing staffer Johanna Jablonoski.

10:05 a.m. Senator Durbin responded to Senator Grassley, and spoke on Covid-19 relief negotiations, state and local assistance, liability and government funding.

10:02 a.m. Senator Grassley spoke about cabinet nominations for the incoming Biden administration.

10:00 a.m. The Senate convened.

***

The Senate will convene at 10:00 a.m. and resume consideration of the nomination of Edward Atchley to be a Judge for the Eastern District of Tennessee.

At 11:30am, the Senate will proceed to two roll call votes:

1. Confirmation of the Atchley nomination.

2. Cloture on the nomination of Zachary Somers to be a Judge for the United States Court of Federal Claims.

If cloture is invoked on the Somers nomination, a confirmation vote is expected later today.

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