Tuesday, December 8, 2015

6:26 p.m. The Senate adjourned until 10 a.m. Wednesday. At 10:45 a.m., the Senate will vote on passage of the education bill.

6:20 p.m. Senator Warren spoke for the education bill.

6:01 p.m. Senator Sasse spoke about the San Bernadino attack and its policy implications.

5:59 p.m. By voice votes, the Senate passed: S. 1719 (to create a national family care-giving strategy); S. Res. 207 (as amended, to answer threats to freedom of the press);  and S. Res. 331 (making December 12 Wreaths Across America Day).

Senator McConnell secured unanimous consent for the injunction of secrecy to be removed from a treaty with Jordan on mutual assistance and criminal matters (Treaty Document 114-4). The treaty was referred to the Foreign Relations Committee.

5:42 p.m. Senator Whitehouse spoke about a congressional delegation’s visit to the Paris climate conference.

5:29 p.m. Senator Toomey spoke for the education bill.

5:19 p.m. Senator Merkley spoke on climate change, food labeling, and Muslim immigrants.

5:05 p.m. Senator Thune spoke on the transportation bill.

4:56 p.m. Senator Stabenow spoke on Muslim immigrants.

4:38 p.m. Senator Menendez spoke on Iran’s nuclear program.

4:31 p.m. Senator Murray spoke on the public school education bill.

4:14 p.m. Senator Murkowski spoke on the Highway Re-authorization bill and the public school education bill.

4:04 p.m. Senator Enzi spoke in favor of the public school education bill.

3:46 p.m. Senator Franken spoke in favor of the public school education bill.

3:33 p.m. Senator Lee spoke against the education bill.

3:22 p.m. Senator Hatch spoke in favor of the education bill.

2:59 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke about accomplishments by the Republican Congress, specifically the pending education bill, the “Every Student Succeeds Act.”

2:47 p.m. Senator Kaine spoke in favor of the “Every Student Succeed Act”, specifically provisions aimed to help students learn more about safe relations and sexual assault.

2:36 p.m. Senator Flake spoke on federal spending.

2:15 p.m. Senators Reed and Collins spoke in favor of the “Every Student Succeeds Act.”

12:48 p.m. Senate stands in recess until 2:15 p.m.

12:44 p.m. Senator Murphy continued on gun violence and the terrorist watch list.

12:34 p.m. Senator Cornyn responds to the UC request with a modification, which Senator Murphy objected to; Senator Cornyn then objected to the original request.

12:14 p.m. Senators Schumer, Shaheen, Blumenthal, Murphy and Klobuchar engage in a colloquy and ask UC to bar individuals on the terrorist watch list have access to firearms.

12;07 p.m. Senators Alexander and Murray take their victory lap on cloture vote and assumption of passage tomorrow of S. 1177.

12:06 p.m. Senator Alexander acheives a UC agreement to have vote on passage of S.1177 tomorrow, Wednesday December 9 at 10:45 a.m.

12:05 p.m. Cloture invoked on S.1177, Elementary and Secondary Education Act/Every Child Achieves Act 84-12.

Voting Yes: 39 Republicans, 44 Democrats, 1 Independent: King.

Voting No: 12 Republicans: Blunt, Crapo, Cruz, Daines, Lee, Moran, Paul, Risch, Sasse, Scott, Shelby, Vitter.

Not voting: 3 Republicans: Coats, Graham, Rubio.  1 Independent: Sanders

11:33 a.m. The Senate began voting on the cloture motion on the conference report to accompany S. 1177, reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, aka Every Child Achieves.

11:24 a.m. Senator Isakson spoke in favor of the education bill as the only member of the committee who also worked on NCLB.

11:04 a.m. Senators Alexander and Murray spoke for the education bill.

11 a.m. Senator Cotton spoke about the tension between domestic security measures and individual rights.

10:27 a.m. Senator Durbin spoke about religious freedom and criticized Trump’s statements about Muslims. He also spoke about student debt to for-profit colleges.

10:11 a.m. Minority Leader Reid criticized Donald Trump’s statements about Muslims and said Republicans. He criticized Republican Senate treatment of President Obama’s nominations.

10:06 a.m. Majority Leader McConnell spoke for the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Schools Act, (S. 1177), which would change the federal mandate for public schools testing in the “No Child Left Behind” law.

* * * * * * * * * *

The Senate will convene at 10 a.m. to resume consideration of the conference report to accompany the  reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Schools Act (the “Every Child” education bill, S. 1177).

NOTE: At 11:15 a.m. , Senator Flake will hold a Pen & Pad in the Senate Press Gallery, Room S-316 of the Capitol. Topic: His report on wasteful federal spending.

At 11:30 a.m., the Senate will vote on the motion to invoke cloture on the education bill.

The Senate is expected to break for caucus lunches from 12:30 p.m. to 2:15 p.m.

There may be more votes today.

Placed on the Senate calendar Monday: S. 2359, Senator Paul’s bill to reverse the District of Columbia’s gun control law.

 

 

 

 

 

Monday, December 7, 2015

5:00 p.m. The Senate moved to executive session to consider calendar number 214, Travis Randall McDonough, of Tennessee, to be US District Judge for the Eastern District of Tennessee.

4:40 p.m. Senator Corker spoke on gun violence. He then asked UC for the confirmation of calendar number 373, Kenneth Damain Ward, of VA, to be a Career Member of the Senior Executive Service, for the rank of Ambassador during his tenure if service as the US Representative to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and 374, Linda Etim, of Wisconsin, to be an Assistant Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development to occur by voice vote immediately following the 5:30 roll call vote on the McDonough nomination.

4:00 p.m. Leader McConnell asked for the second reading of S. 2359, regarding second amendment rights in the District of Columbia. He objected to further proceedings and the legislation was placed on the calendar. He then spoke on President Obama’s press release and his lack of a plan to defeat terrorists.

3:30 p.m. Senator Durbin spoke on gun violence and legislation of gun sales.

2:26 p.m. Senator Nelson spoke in favor of expanding government access to bulk data collection.

2:20 p.m. Senator Peters spoke in praise of the Transportation bill passed last week.

2:02 p.m. Senator Reid spoke about the Senate schedule and a Democratic legislative proposal to address terrorism threats.

2:00 p.m. The Senate convened at 2:00 p.m. and will be in a period of morning business until 5:00 p.m.

At 5:00 p.m., the Senate will proceed to Executive Session in order to consider the nomination of Travis McDonough to be a US District Judge for the Eastern District of Tennessee, with a vote expected on confirmation of the nomination at approximately 5:30 p.m.

Senator McConnell filed cloture on the conference report to accompany the Every Child Achieves Act (S. 1177) during Thursday’s session.  Absent a time agreement, that cloture vote will occur one hour after the Senate convenes on Tuesday, December 8, 2015.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

9:53 p.m. The Senate adjourned until 2 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 7. At 5 p.m., the Senate will begin debate on the confirmation of Travis Randall McDonough’s nomination to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee. The confirmation vote will be at 5:30 p.m.

9:51 p.m. Leader McConnell brought up the reauthorization of  the “No Child” Elementary and Secondary Schools Act. He filed cloture on the bill.  He began the process of bringing to the floor S. 2359, on access to firearms in the District of Columbia. The Senate passed by voice vote S. 2032, recognizing the bison as the national mammal.

9:33 p.m. Senators Enzi and Cantwell spoke about the highway bill.

9:16 p.m. Senator Lee spoke against the Highway bill.

9:10 p.m. ML McConnell, Senator Inhofe and Senator Boxer spoke about the successful passage of the highway bill.

9:01 p.m. The Senate voted 83 to 16 to pass the long-term reauthorization of the nation’s highway programs.  Sixteen Senators voted against the conference report to accompany H.R. 22: they were two Democrats, (Senators Carper and Warren) and fourteen Republicans (Senators Corker, Cotton, Crapo, Cruz, Flake, Lankford, Lee, Paul, Perdue, Risch, Rubio, Sasse, Scott, Shelby).  Senator Sanders was absent.  The bill goes to the White House for the President’s signature.

8:48 p.m. The Senate voted 77 to 22 to waive provisions of the budget act in order to to proceed to the vote on passage of the long-term reauthorization of the nation’s highway programs.

8:10 p.m. The Senate passed H.R. 3762, reconciliation bill, as amended by a roll call vote of 52-47.  (Senators Collins and Kirk voted against passage. Senator Sanders was absent.)  The reconciliation bill was amended and will go back to the House.

8:08 p.m. ML McConnell and Senator Murray have closing speeches before final passage of HR 3762, reconciliation bill.

8:07 p.m.  The McConnell amendment #2874 is agreed to by voice vote.

8:05 p.m. The McConnell substitute amendment #2916 is agreed to by voice vote.

8:04 p.m. The Motion to waive on the Murphy amendment #2918 is not agreed to 46-53.

7:48 p.m. Roll call vote begins on the motion to waive the budget act with respect to the Murphy amendment #2918.

7:46 p.m. The motion to waive the budget act with respect to the Baldwin amendment #2919 is not agreed to 45-54.

7:28 p.m. Roll call vote begins on the motion to waive the budget act in regards to the Baldwin amend #2919 regarding keep your plan.

7:27 p.m. Reid amend #2917 about striking sunset provisions was agreed to by voice vote.

7:14 p.m. Motion to waive the budget act in relation to the McConnell substitute amendment #2916 was not agreed to by a vote of 52-47; and the point of order is sustained and section 105-B of amendment #2916 is stricken.

7:02 p.m. Senator Paul amend #2915 regarding DC gun ban was not agreed to by 54-45.

6:21 p.m. Senator Coats amendment #2888 regarding medical expense deductions was agreed to by a vote of 60-39.

6:18 p.m. Senator Cardin offered his amendment #2874 regarding medical expense deduction.  It was defeated by a voice vote.

6:17 p.m. Senator McCain offered his amendment #2884, regarding drug importation, and then withdrew said amendment.

6:15 p.m. Paul amendment #2899 about refugee screening failed by a vote of 10-89.

5:34 p.m. Motion to waive the budget act in relation to the Bennet amendment #2907 about Veterans and VA construction failed by a vote of 47-52.

5:27 p.m.  Manchin Amendment #2908 about background checks fails by a vote of 47-50.

4:29 p.m.  The Senate voted not to waive the budget act in relation to Feinstein amendment #2910 by a roll call vote of 45-54.  (The motion to waive was in response to an Enzi budget point of order against the Feinstein amendment, which concerns banning the sale of firearms and explosives to individuals on the terrorist watch list.

4:01 p.m. Motion to waive budget provision for Cornyn amendment (#2910) to prevent terrorists from acquiring firearms.  The vote to waive the budget act failed 55-44.   The point of order is sustained and the Cornyn amendment (#2910) falls.

3:50 p.m. Motion to waive budget act in relation to Shaheen Amendment (#2892) on equal medical coverage of mental illness and addiction. Budget waiver for Shaheen fails, 47 to 52.

3:21 p.m. Heller amendment #2882 to strike the Cadillac tax provision from the health care law. Passes 90 to 10. Democrats voting “Nay” (to save the tax): Boxer, Carper, Durbin, Kaine, Manchin, McCaskill, Warner. Republican “Nays”: Coats, Corker, Sasse.

3:02 p.m. Motion to waive the budget act regarding Casey amendment #2893. Fails by a vote of 48 to 54.

2:44 p.m. Collins amendment #2885, to strike the provisions that would eliminate federal funding for Planned Parenthood. Not agreed to by a vote of 48 to 52.  Republicans Collins, Kirk and Murkowski voted for the amendment, with 43 Democrats and both independents.  Democrat Manchin voted against the amendment, with 51 Republicans.

2:23 p.m. Motion to waive the budget act regarding Brown amendment-100 percent FMap- #2883 was not agreed to by a vote of 45-55.

2:04 p.m. Vote on Johnson amendment #2875, 60 vote threshold. The amendment was not agreed to by a vote of 56 to 44.

1:30 p.m. Motion to table the Murray amendment on women’s health care programs (#2876).  The motion to table was agreed to by a vote 54-46.

1:25 p.m. Senator Grassley spoke on the Reconciliation bill.

1:23 p.m. Senator Enzi spoke on the Reconciliation bill.

1:19 p.m. Senator Blumenthal spoke on gun violence.

1:10 p.m. Senator McCain spoke on the Affordable Care Act.

1:08 p.m. Senator Merkley spoke on food safety.

12:45 p.m. Senator Cardin spoke on nominations and asked unanimous consent to vote on 7 nominations, Senator Cruz objected.

12:43 p.m. Senator Shelby spoke against gun control.

12:39 p.m. Senator Brown spoke about Wall Street reform.

12:23 p.m. Senator Murkowski spoke on the Reconciliation Bill.

12:06 p.m. Senator Casey spoke on the Reconciliation Bill.

11:30 p.m. Senator Sullivan spoke on the Reconciliation Bill.

11:02 p.m. Senator Shaheen spoke on the Reconciliation Bill.

10:57 p.m. Senator Warren spoke on Planned Parenthood.

10:52 p.m. Senator Hirono spoke on amendment #2887 to the Reconciliation Bill.

10:40 p.m. Senator Boxer spoke on shooting in San Bernardino and gun violence.

10:23 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke on criminal justice reform and the Affordable Care Act.

9:56 p.m. Senator Reid spoke on ML McConnell’s leadership.

9:44 p.m. ML McConnell spoke on the Affordable Care Act.

9:34 p.m. Senator Reid spoke on gun violence.

***

The Senate will convene at 9:30 a.m. to resume consideration of the budget reconciliation bill for fiscal year 2016 (H.R. 3762).

At 1:30 p.m. debate time on reconciliation will expire and a “vote-a-rama” — series of roll call votes on amendments — is expected to begin.

These amendments are pending to the reconciliation bill:

  • McConnell substitute (#2874);

o    Murray amendment to on women’s health care programs (#2876);

o    Johnson amendment to let patients retain their preferred plans under the new medical insurance system (#2875);

Also on Thursday, the Senate is expected to consider the long-term reauthorization of highway programs (H.R. 22).

 

 

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

6:47 p.m.  The Senate has adjourned.  There were no roll calls votes during today’s session.  The Senate will reconvene at 9:30 am and resume consideration of H.R. 3762 To restore Americans’ Healthcare Freedom reconciliation Act (repeal Obamacare). Time will expire on the bill tomorrow at 1:30 p.m.  The Senate passed the following in wrap up:

S. Res 324 – National Phenylketouria awareness day – Dec 3rd
S. Res 325 – To allow the collection of charitable goods in Senate Office Buildings.

6:45 p.m. Senator Ernst and Tillis spoke in favor of H.R. 3762

6:00 p.m. Senator Inhofe spoke on Syrian refugees and the Affordable Care Act.

5:44 p.m. Senator Durbin spoke on the Affordable Care Act, gun violence, and Syrian refugees.

5:25 p.m. Senator Portman spoke on budget reconciliation.

5:20 p.m. Senator Tester spoke on food labeling.

5:12 p.m. Senator Hoeven spoke on repealing the Affordable Care Act.

4:57 p.m Senators Warren and Merkley spoke on the Dodd-Frank Act.

4:45 p.m. Senator Reed spoke on the Dodd-Frank Act.

4:22 p.m Senators Alexander, Burr, Isakson, Cassidy, and Scott held a colloquy on repealing the Affordable Care Act.

4:15 p.m. Senator Nelson, spoke on appropriations.

3:55 p.m. Senator Gardner spoke on the Affordable Care Act.

3:33 p.m. Senator Hatch spoke on the Affordable Care Act.

3:21 p.m. Senator Crapo spoke on the Affordable Care Act.

2:50 p.m. Senators Blunt and Thune spoke for the reconciliation bill and for repealing the Affordable Care Act.

2:10 p.m. Senators Murphy, Brown and Stabenow spoke against the reconciliation bill and repealing the Affordable Care Act, with Senator Brown discussing an amendment he plans to offer to expand medicaid across the entire country.

2:00 p.m. Senator Coons paid tribute to Fred Sears, upon his retirement at the end of 2015.

1:51 p.m. Senator Perdue spoke on the Affordable Care Act.

1:40 p.m. Senator Toomey spoke on his amendment. Prior to the Affordable Care Act, if a family had out of pocket medical expenses that exceeded 7.5% of their income, they can deduct any cost above that rate. The Affordable Care Act changed this limit to 10%; the Toomey amendment would revert back to 7.5%.

1:09 p.m. Senator Fischer spoke on the Affordable Care Act.

12:55 p.m. Senator Coats spoke on the Affordable Care Act.

12:48 p.m. Senator Hirono paid tribute to the victims of the Planned Parenthood shooting and Planned Parenthood.

12:40 p.m. Senator Roberts spoke about the Affordable Care Act.

12:33 p.m. Senator Wyden spoke about the Affordable Care Act.

12:22 p.m. Senator Cardin spoke about climate change and the ongoing summit in Paris.

12:01 p.m. Senators Johnson and Cornyn spoke in favor of the reconciliation bill and repealing the affordable care act.

11:50 a.m. Senator Boxer responded to comments by Senator Lankford regarding Planned Parenthood and further on the reconciliation bill in general.

11:38 a.m. Senator Sessions spoke in support of the reconciliation bill and repealing the affordable care act.

11:27 a.m. Senator Wyden spoke about the lack of bipartisanship in the reconciliation bill and also spoke against the defunding of Planned Parenthood.

11:22 a.m. Senator Blumenthal spoke in favor of the Murray-Wyden amendment.

10:47 a.m. Senator Lankford spoke about funding for Planned Parenthood.

10:21 a.m. Senator Boxer defended the new health care system. She endorsed the Murray-Wyden amendment and criticized Republican efforts to stop federal subsidies to Planned Parenthood.

10:12 a.m. Senator Johnson brought up his amendment (#2875) on health care.

10:04 a.m. Senator Murray spoke for her amendment on access to birth control, abortion and other reproductive health care services (Murray-Wyden Amendment #2876 to Amendment #2874).

10:01 a.m. Senator Enzi spoke on the reconciliation debate.

9:59 a.m. The Senate resumed consideration of H.R. 3762, the 2016 budget reconcilation bill.

9:46 a.m. Minority Leader Reid criticized the legislative record of the Senate under Republican leadership. He also defended the new health care system. He criticized statements on race, Syrian refugees and other topics by some Republican presidential candidates.

9:45 a.m. H.R. 427, an amendment to Ch. 8, Title IV of the U.S. Code, was placed on the calendar under the Rule 14 process.

9:33 a.m. Majority Leader McConnell used leader time to discuss health care. He also spoke about the enactment of the sex trafficking measure.

***

The Senate convened at 9:30 a.m., and following leader time, will resume consideration of H.R.3762, Restoring Americans’ Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act of 2015.

Votes are possible during today’s session.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

6:50 p.m. The Senate has adjourned until 9:30 a.m., Wednesday, December 2nd and will resume consideration of H.R. 3762, Restoring Americans’ Healthcare Freedom Act of 2015. The MTP to H.R. 3762 was agreed to by a voice vote. ML McConnell then offered substitute amendment #2874 to H.R. 3762.

During wrap-up, H.R. 427, to provide that major rules of the Executive Branch shall have no force or effect unless a joint resolution of approval is enacted into law, was read for the 1st time.

****

6:12 p.m. Senator Wyden spoke on Planned Parenthood.

6:00 p.m. Senator Grassley spoke on the Affordable Care Act.

5:49 p.m. Senator Wicker spoke on climate change.

5:34 p.m. Senator Lankford spoke on the budget.

5:27 p.m. Senator Hatch spoke on surface transportation infrastructure.

5:14 p.m. Senator Moran spoke on appropriations.

4:55 p.m. Senator Whitehouse spoke on climate change.

4:50 p.m. Senators Leahy, Markey, Franken and Whitehouse spoke on Social Security payments and cost of living adjustments.

3:54 p.m. Senators Nelson and Warren spoke about Social Security and the bill to make up for no Social Security COLA this year.

3:36 p.m. Senator Capito spoke about Affordable Care Act repeal.

3:20 p.m. Senator Murray spoke in support of the Affordable Care Act and against efforts to repeal it.

2:35 p.m. Senators Enzi, Sanders and Alexander spoke on health care and budget reconciliation.

2:27 p.m. Senator Bennet spoke on the planned parenthood shoting in Colorado last week, paying tribute to the three people killed.

2:20 p.m. Senator Lee paid tribute to Olene Walker, the first female governor of Utah.

2:15 p.m. The Senate returns from recess.

12:27 p.m. The Senate stands in recess until 2:15 p.m.

12:18 p.m. Senator Coats spoke for the 28th time on the “waste of the week.”  On this occassion, he spoke about facilitator fraud in the social security disability insurance fund.  He later extended morning business until 3:00 p.m.

11:45 a.m. Senator Hatch spoke on religious freedom.

11:26 a.m. Senator Kaine spoke on the American Security Against Foreign Enemies Act of 2015.

11:19 a.m. Senator Thune criticized the new health care system.

11:03 a.m. Senator Cardin called for an end to violence in Burundi.

10:48 a.m. Senator Cornyn criticized the health care law. He also spoke about the migration of underage from Latin America into the Southwestern U.S.

10:34 a.m. The Senate began morning business. Senator Isakson saluted Thomas G. Cousins, a Georgia philanthropy.

10:05 a.m. Majority Leader McConnell spoke against the new health care law and described changes in the system that the proposed budget reconciliation measure would make. He aslo described the Senate’s legislative record under the Republican majority.

**********

The Senate will convene at 10:00 a.m., and following any leader time, proceed to a period of morning business until 12:30 p.m.

At 12:30 p.m., recess for the weekly caucus luncheons until 2:15 p.m.

 

 

 

Monday, November 30, 2015

6:15 p.m The Senate adjourns until 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, December 1, 2015.

6:14 p.m. The Smith nomination is confirmed 79-7.

Ayes: 34 Republicans, 44 Democrats, 1 Independent.

No’s: 7 Republicans (Blunt, Crapo, Heller, Lee, Paul, Risch and Sasse)

Not voting: 14: 13 Republicans and 1 Independent: Ayotte, Burr, Cruz, Flake, Graham, Johnson, Kirk, McCain, Portman, Rubio, Sanders, Shelby, Tillis, Vitter.

(3 Republicans (Cruz, Graham, Rubio) 1 Independent (Sanders))

5:35 p.m Roll call vote begins on the nomination of Gayle Smith to be Administrator of the US Agency for International Development.

5:32 p.m. Senator Inhofe proceeds to the “wrap-up” session before the roll call vote.  Items passed by UC:

Executive Calendar #388: The nomination of Robert Becklund to be a Brigadier General in the Air National Guard.

Executive Calendar #390: The nomination of Frank Emanuel to be Brigadier General in the Army National Guard.

Executive Calendar #391: The nomination of Michelle Skubic to be Rear Admiral in the Navy.

All nominations on the Secretary’s desk in the Air Force, Army and Navy.

S. 1698: A bill to exclude payments from state eugenics compensation programs from consideration in determining

eligibility for or the amount of federal public benefits.

S Res 322: Recognizing the 60th anniversary of the refusal of Rosa Parks to give up her seat on a bus on December 1, 1955.
UC that following the roll call vote on the Smith nomination, the Senate return to legislative session and adjourn for the day until 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, December 1.

At that time, following any leader time, proceed to a period of morning business until 12:30 p.m., and that at 12:30, recess for the weekly caucus luncheons until 2:15 p.m.

***

5:13 p.m. Senators Shaheen and Cardin spoke in favor of the Smith nomination.

5:12 p.m. The Senate begins debate on the nomination of Gayle Smith to be Administrator of the US Agency for International Development.   Senators Shaheen and Cardin spoke in favor of the nomination.

4:14 p.m. Senator Durbin spoke about gun violence and the refugee crisis.

4:06 p.m. Senator Cotton spoke on secret service agents violating the Privacy Act, and three holds he initiated to prod the administration on this topic.

3:46 p.m. Senator Nelson spoke on Puerto Rico’s national debt and the bulk metadata collection program.

3:20 p.m. Senator Hatch spoke on Puerto Rico’s national debt.

3:08 p.m. Senator Reid spoke on Planned Parenthood and gun violence.

3:03 p.m. ML McConnell’s unanimous consent request that the Secretary of the Senate be authorized to request a return of the papers with respect to P.N. 742 and that when the papers are received, the Senate’s action regarding the nomination November 19, 2015 be vitiated, was agreed to.

S. 2329 – Preventing entry of extremists under the refugee program was read for the 2nd time.

He also spoke on an energy tax.

***

The Senate will convene at 3:00 p.m. and proceed to a period of morning business until 5:00 p.m.

  • At 5:00 p.m., the Senate will enter Executive Session in order to consider the nomination of Gayle Smith to be Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development.
  • At approximately 5:30 p.m., the Senate will proceed to a roll call vote on confirmation of the Smith nomination.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

6:33 p.m. The Senate adjourned until 3 p.m. Monday, Nov. 30.

6:32 p.m. Via Rule 14, Senator McConnell placed on the Senate calendar H.R. 4038, requiring certain background investigations before the admission of foreign refugees to the U.S., and S. 2329, a bill to prevent the entry of extremists into the U.S. under refugee programs.

6:28 p.m. By voice votes, the Senate passed the following measures:

— S. 1550 (Ernst) to improve Title 31 of the U.S. Code;
— S. 2328 to reauthorize the National Sea Grant Colleges program;
— S.Res. 319 to make November 29 Safe Driver Sunday;
— H.Con.Res. 95, the Thanksgiving adjournment resolution;
— S.599 to extend a Medicaid emergency psychiatric demonstration project;
— S.Res. 314 to make the third Tuesday in November National Entrepreneurs Day.

6:27 p.m. By a voice vote, the Senate confirmed en bloc Exec. Cal. Nos. 379 through 382 — Coast Guard promotions, plus a nomination to the Amtrak board

By voice vote, the Senate confirmed en bloc Ex. Cal. Nos. 136 (Nat’l Foundation on the Arts & Humanities); 194 & 195 (both D.C. Superior Court); 321 &  322 (Inter-American Foundation board); 323 (Nat’l Council on the Arts); 324 (Nat’l Council on the Humanities) 336 (Congresswoman Lee of CA to be a representative to the U.N. General Assembly); 344 (USAID inspector general); 376 (EEOC) and 377 (Michael H. Michaud of Maine to be Asst. Secretary of Labor for veterans issues).

 

6:05 p.m. Senator Sullivan paid tribute to Medal of Freedom winner Bonnie Carroll of Alaska.

5:36 p.m. Senator Carper spoke about the Paris attacks and Syrian refugees.

5:18 p.m. Senator Sessions spoke about the Paris attacks and Syrian refugees.

5:06 p.m. Senator Portman spoke about the Paris attacks and Syrian refugees.

4:41 p.m. Senator Casey spoke about the Paris attacks and the refugee crisis.

4:32 p.m. Senator Brown spoke on ISIS.

4:17 p.m. Senator Roberts spoke on the Paris attacks.

3:49 p.m. Senator Murkowski spoke on genetically modified salmon and energy.

3:27 p.m. Senator Coons spoke about the Budget.

3:00 p.m. Senator Merkley spoke on Wall Street reform.

2:36 p.m. Senators Wicker and Shaheen engage in a colloquy on the 20th anniversary of the Dayton accords.

2:36 p.m. Senate proceeds to a period of morning business.

2:35 p.m. The following nominations were confirmed by voice vote:

Elisabeth I. Millard, VA, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Tajikistan.

Marc Jonathan Sievers, MD, to be Ambassador to the Sultanate of Oman.

Deborah R. Malac, VA, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Uganda.

Lisa J. Peterson, VA, to be Ambassador to Swaziland.

H. Dean Pittman, DC, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Mozambique.

2:33 p.m. Nominationof Peter Bodde to be Ambassador to Libya is confirmed 95-0.

Yea’s: 51 Republicans, 43 Democrats, 1 Independents.

Senators not voting: Graham, Nelson, Rubio, Sanders, Vitter.

2:02 p.m. Roll call vote begins on the nomination of Peter Bodde to be Ambassador to Libya.

2:00 p.m. Senate proceeds to executive session to consider the following nominations:

Peter William Bodde, MD, to be Ambassador to Libya.

Elisabeth I. Millard, VA, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Tajikistan.

Marc Jonathan Sievers, MD, to be Ambassador to the Sultanate of Oman.

Deborah R. Malac, VA, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Uganda.

Lisa J. Peterson, VA, to be Ambassador to Swaziland.

H. Dean Pittman, DC, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Mozambique.

1:40 p.m. Senator McCain spoke about terrorism, asks UC to take up and pass S. 2303, regarding eliminating sequestration for all security related funds.  Senator Reed objects, citing the budget control act and scope of other departments that fight terrorism.

1:18 p.m. Senator Hatch spoke about ISIS and religious liberty.

1:15 p.m. Senator Johnson spoke about Bart and Sherry Starr.  He paid tribute to the charitable work of the NFL star and his wife.

12:53 p.m. Senator Grassley spoke about terrorism.

12:50 p.m. ML McConnell withdrew both cloture motions on H.R. 2577 and called up H.R. 3996,

the Surface Transportation Extension Act of 2015, Part 2, that was received from the House.  H.R. 3996 was passed by voice vote.

12:35 p.m. Senator Coats began his 27th Waste of the Week speech this year.

12:31 p.m. Senator Reed said work will continue on the bill.

12:27 p.m. Senator Collins spoke about the state of the debate on H.R. 2755, Transportation HUD appropriations.  Without a change of heart, she said, completion of the Transportation HUD appropriations bill is no longer expected today.

12:23 p.m. Senator Collins asked unanimous consent that the Senate go into morning business until 2:00 p.m.

12:20 p.m. Senator Inhofe offered his amendment, #2820, as modified by the changes at the desk.  Senator Paul objected.

12:05 p.m. Senator Inhofe spoke on his amendment, #2820, to call for cooperation between NOAA and the FAA as they develop a next generaion radar system.  He is preparing to offer the amendment.

12:00 p.m. Senator Hirono spoke on immigration.

11:46 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke on the Transportation Appropriations bill and International Adoption Month.

11:43 p.m. Senator Cornyn asked to call up his amendment #2844 to H.R. 2577, Senator Paul objected and asked unanimous consent to bring up his amendment #2843 to H.R. 2577, Senator Collins objected.

11:33 p.m. At 2:00 p.m., the Senate will vote on the following nominations:

Peter William Bodde, MD, to be Ambassador to Libya.

Elisabeth I. Millard, VA, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Tajikistan.

Marc Jonathan Sievers, MD, to be Ambassador to the Sultanate of Oman.

Deborah R. Malac, VA, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Uganda.

Lisa J. Peterson, VA, to be Ambassador to Swaziland.

H. Dean Pittman, DC, to be Ambassador to the Republic of Mozambique.

***

11:14 p.m. Senator Murphy spoke on the Paris attacks and refugees.

10:58 a.m. Senator Cruz rebutted Senators Leahy and Durbin.

10:54 a.m. Senator Durbin spoke against Senator Cruz’s legislation.

10:50 a.m. Senator Leahy spoke against Senator Cruz’s refugee bill.

10:45 a.m. Senator Cruz spoke for S. 247, which would strip citizenship from any American who joins the Islamic State.  He also spoke for S. 2302, a bill to block the immigration of refugees from Syria.

10:44 a.m. Senator Cruz sought passage, by unanimous consent, of S. 247 and S. 2302. Senator Durbin objected to considering both measures.

10:14 a.m. Minority Leader Reid spoke about policies for admitting Syrian refugees into the U.S.

10:10 a.m. Senator McConnell completed Rule 14 procedings to place on the Senate calendar H.R. 3762, the continuing resolution on  federal spending.

10:03 a.m. Majority Leader McConnell spoke the the U.S. procedures for accepting Syrian refugees and the administration’s policy on the Syrian civil war. He spoke against transfer of detainees from Guantanamo Bay to facilities in the continental U.S.

10:02 a.m. Senator Thune welcomed a visiting pastor who offered the morning prayer, Jeff Wheeler of Central Baptist Church in Sioux Falls, SD.

* * * * *

The Senate will convene at 10 a.m. to resume consideration of H.R. 2577, the 2016 appropriation for the Departments of Transportation and Housing & Urban Development.

The filing deadline is 1 p.m. for amendments to the bill and to the Collins-reed substitute (Amendment #2812).

 Cloture has been filed on the Collins-Reed substitute amendment and on the underlying appropriations bill.  Unless there is an intervening time agreement, there will be a cloture vote on the substitute one hour after the Senate convenes on Friday .

Besides the Collins-Reed substitute (#2812), there is one amendment pending, the Collins second-degree amendment (#2813) to the substitute, a technical amendment.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

6:53 p.m. The Senate adjourned and will reconvene at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, November 19. At 11:00 they will resume consideration of H.R. 2577, the Transportation/HUD bill. During wrap up the following bills were passed en bloc:

  • H.Con.Res. 93 Authorizing use of Emancipation Hall for a ceremony honoring the anniversary of the 13th amendment.
  • S.Res. 282-Supporting goals and ideals of American Diabetes Month.
  • S.Res. 318-Authorize deposition testimony and representation in Carowind management, L.L.C.

H.R. 3762 (Reconciliation of the budget) was read for the first time.

6:30 p.m. Senator Sullivan spoke on his amendment about bridges.

6:26 p.m. Senator McConnell filed cloture on the Collins substitute amendment #2812 and also filed cloture on H.R. 2577-Transprotation Bill.

6:25 p.m. The Senate reconvened and resumed consideration of H.R. 2577.

5:05 p.m. The Senate recessed subject to the call of the chair.

4:48 p.m. Senator Booker spoke about the first responders bill and also spoke about highway safety.

4:32 p.m. Senator Hoeven spoke about lifting the ban on exporting crude oil.

4:25 p.m. Senator Collins and Senator Reed spoke in opposition to Senator Paul’s amendment.

4:17 p.m. Senator Paul spoke about on his amendment about refugees.

4:04 p.m. Senator Franken spoke about the attacks in Paris and Syrian refugees.

3:53 p.m. Senator Heinrich spoke about the attacks in Paris and ISIL.

3:00 p.m. Senator Carper spoke on the highway bill conference committee.

2:30 p.m. Senator Perdue spoke about terrorism.

2:21 p.m. Senator Moran spoke on funding for the National Institute of Health.

2:02 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke on the President’s strategy towards ISIS.

1:05 p.m. The Senate agreed to amendments #2809 and #2817 to H.R. 2577 by unanimous consent. Amendment #2815 to amendment #2812 to H.R. 2577 was agreed to by voice vote.

12:41 p.m. Senator Whitehouse spoke about climate change and epilepsy.

12:30 p.m. Senator Cassidy tried to get unanimous consent to pass the E.G.O. act-eliminating government-funded oil painting act. Senator Reid objected.

11:50 a.m. Senators Blunt and Klobuchar spoke on and passed by UC S. Res 315, expressing support for National Adoption Day and National Adoption Month.

11:48 a.m. Majority Leader McConnell acheived UC that on Monday November 30th, at 5:00 p.m., proceed to executive session to consider the nomination of Gayle Smith to be Administrator of the Agency for International Development, with a vote on the nomination at 5:30 p.m.

11:38 a.m. Senator Reed gives opening remarks on the Transportation/HUD appropriations.

11:15 a.m. The Senate began debate on the Transportation/HUD appropriations bill, S. 2577, with Senator Collins submitting a substitute amendment #2812; and the first degree amendment #2813; and gives her opening remarks on the bill.

11:14 a.m. Motion to go to conference agreed to, and the following conferees were appointed: Alexander, Enzi, Burr, Isakson, Paul, Collins, Murkowski, Kirk, Scott, Hatch, Roberts, Cassidy, Murray, Mikulski, Sanders, Casey, Franken, Bennet, Whitehouse, Baldwin, Murphy, and Warren, (12 Republicans/10 Democrats)

11:13 a.m. Cloture invoked on motion to go to conference on ESEA reform, S. 1177; 91-6.

Ayes: 45 Republicans, 44 Democrats, 2 Independents

Nos: 6 Republicans (Crapo, Cruz, Daines, Lee, Paul, Risch)

Not voting: 3 Republicans (Graham, Rubio, Vitter)

10:44 a.m. The Senate began its vote on cloture on the motion to go to conference on S. 1177.  Following this vote, the Senate will proceed to a vote to adopt the compound motion to go to conference, either by voice vote or roll call vote. At that point, any motions to instruct conferees will be in order, but none are anticipated.

10:42 a.m. Senator Lee argued that a compromise on the education bill should go before the Senate for at least a week. Senator Alexander said this would be the case.

10:39 a.m. Senator Alexander rebutted the critique of the education conference process.

10:25 a.m. Senator Lee criticized the way in which a House-Senate conference may convene on the public schools bill.

10:17 a.m. Senator Alexander began a colloquy with Senator Murray, urging the Senate to vote to go to conference with the House on S. 1177, the elementary and secondary education bill.

10:05 a.m. Minority Leader Reid spoke in favor of the transportation appropriation.

10:02 a.m. Majority Leader McConnell said the Senate today will take up the 2016 appropriation for the Departments of Transportation and Housing and Urban Development.

Senator McConnell finished Rule 14 procedings to place on the calendar S. 2288, a bill forbidding the Fed to lobby the Congress on legisaltion.

Senator McConnell filed cloture on the motion to go to conference on the education bill.

*****

  • The Senate will reconvene at 10:00 a.m. and be in a period of morning business until 11:00 a.m.

 

  • The cloture petition on the motion to proceed to HR 2577, the Transportation/HUD appropriations bill was vitiated, and the Senate will begin debate on the bill at a time to be determined.

 

 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

6:48 p.m. The Senate adjourned until 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday.

6:37 p.m. Senator Durbin spoke on immigration and the Dream Act.

6:35 p.m. Senator Daines wraps-up for the evening.

Items passed by UC: HR 2297, preventing Hezbollah from gaining access to international financial aid.

Items read for the first time: S.2288, prohibiting members and staff of the federal reserve system from lobbying for or against legislation.

UC that when the Senate adjourns, it do so until 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday November 18th.  At that time be in a period of morning business for one hour, until 11:00 a.m.   Further by unanimous consent the cloture motion on the motion to proceed to HR. 2577, the Transportation/HUD appropriations bill was vitiated, and the Senate will begin consideration of the bill at a time to be determined.

UC that the Senate will adjourn following the remarks of Senator Durbin.

 

6:34 p.m. S.J. Res 23 agreed to 52-46.

Aye’s: 49 Republicans, 3 Democrats.  (Donnelly, Heitkamp, Manchin)

No’s: 41 Democrats, 3 Republicans, (Ayotte, Collins, Kirk) 2 Independents.

Not voting: Graham and Rubio.

5.59 p.m. The Senate began a roll call vote on S.J. Res 23, a joint resolution providing for congressional disapproval of an EPA clean power rule.

5:58 p.m. S.J. Res 24 agreed to 52-46.

Aye’s: 49 Republicans, 3 Democrats.  (Donnelly, Heitkamp, Manchin)

No’s: 41 Democrats, 3 Republicans, (Ayotte, Collins, Kirk) 2 Independents.

Not voting: Graham and Rubio.

5:28 p.m. The Senate began a roll call vote on S.J.Res 24, a joint resolution providing for congressional disapproval of an EPA clean power rule.

4:50 p.m. Senators Hoeven and Enzi spoke on the clean power resolution.

4:40 p.m. Senator Cardin spoke about terrorism before turning to discuss the pending clean power resolution.

4:35 p.m. Senator Thune spoke about terrorism.

4:17 p.m. Senator Inhofe spoke about the pending clean power resolution.

4:16 p.m. Majority Leader McConnell acheived UC to have votes on SJ Res 24 and SJ Res 23 beginning at 5:30 p.m. today.

4:00 p.m. Senator Carper spoke about Syrian refugees and terrorism before turning to discuss the pending clean power resolution.

3:58 p.m. Senator Vitter spoke about his bill to stop refugees from Syria after 270 days.

3:52 p.m. Senator Schatz spoke in support of the the Clean Power Plan.  He spoke in opposition to S.J.Res. 24.

3:44 p.m. Senator Merkley spoke about energy and the Clean Power Plan.  He spoke in opposition to S.J.Res 23 and S.J.Res. 24.

3:33 p.m. Senator Markey spoke on climate and the Clean Power Plan. He opposes S.J.Res 24 and S.J.Res 23.

3:22 p.m. Senator Udall spoke on energy.

3:11 p.m. Senator Warren spoke on ISIL and Syrian refugees.

3:01 p.m Senator Daines spoke on energy.

2:52 p.m. Senator Kaine spoke on ISIL.

2:41 p.m. Senator Flake spoke on ISIL.

2:15 p.m. Senator McCain spoke on ISIL.

***

1:20 p.m. The Senate stands in recess for the weekly caucus lunches until 2:15 p.m.

1:10 p.m. Senator Manchin spoke on the resolution of disapproval of an EPA rule on power plant emissions.

1:05 p.m. Senator Nelson spoke on funding for NASA.

12:55 p.m. Senator Cornyn spoke on the refugee crisis and terrorism.

12:45 p.m. Senator Shelby spoke on the Paris attacks and terrorism in the U.S.

12:36 p.m. Senator Shaheen spoke on climate change.

12:26 p.m. Senator Barrasso spoke on climate change.

12:10 p.m. Senator Whitehouse spoke on climate change.

11:50 a.m. Senator Coats spoke on terrorism.

11:19 a.m. Senator Boxer spoke against the resolution of disapproval.

11:00 a.m. The Senate voted by voice to proceed to S.J.Res. 24, a joint resolution of disapproval of an EPA rule on power plant emissions, with up to ten hours of debate. Senators Capito and Heitkamp spoke in favor of the resolution of disapproval.

10:46 a.m. Senator Klobuchar offered condolences for the terrorist attacks in Paris. She called for better intelligence on terrorism and for swifter senate action on executive nominations.

10:36 a.m. Senator Heller offered condolences for the terrorist attacks in Paris. He also spoke against the health law’s “Cadillac tax” on certain medical insurance policies.

10:27 a.m. Senator Durbin offered condolences for the terrorist attacks in Paris. He also spoke in favor of U.S. refugee policy and called for eliminating the Islamic State from Syria and Iraq, relying on such local forces as the Kurds.

10:08 a.m. Minority Leader Reid spoke in favor of the EPA’s clean power regulations. He paid tribute to Senator Mikulski; he noted that senators will shortly welcome the French ambassador to the U.S.; he criticized the Republican Senate leadership for the pace of action on executive nominations.

10:03 a.m. Majority Leader McConnell  spoke for the joint resolutions to disapprove of rules that the EPA has promulgated to limit power plant emissions. He also spoke about last week’s elections in Burma and about President Obama’s decision to honor Senator Mikulski with a Medal of Freedom.

***

The Senate will convene at 10 a.m.  There will be a moment of silence for victims of the Paris attacks.

At 11 a.m., Senator McConnell is expected to bring up S.J.Res. 24, a joint resolution providing for congressional disapproval of an EPA rule on carbon emissions guidelines.  Under title 5 of the U.S. code, there will be up to 10 hours debate equally divided before a vote on the joint resolution.

During Monday’s session, Senator McConnell filed cloture on the motion to proceed to HR 2577, the Transportation and Housing Appropriations bill.  If the Senate doesn’t reach agreement to vote earlier, they would vote on the cloture motion an hour after they convene on Wednesday, November 18.

Monday, November 16, 2015

7:07 p.m. The Senate adjourned until 10:00 a.m. Tuesday November 17, 2015.

7:00 p.m. Senator McConnell made a motion to proceed to HR 2577, the Transportation and Housing Appropriations bill.  Then he filed cloture on the motion to proceed.  In wrap-up the Senate passed S. Res. 313, condemning the terrorist attacks in Paris.

6:23 p.m. Senators Inhofe and Lankford spoke in tribute to Master Sergeant Joshua Wheeler from Oklahoma.  The Army Ranger was killed in action on October 22, 2015.

6:22 p.m. The Senate confirmed LaShann Moutique DeArcy Hall, to be U.S. District Judge for the Eastern District of New York by a roll call vote of 93-1.

5:32 p.m. The Senate began a roll call vote on the nomination of  LaShann Moutique DeArcy Hall, to be U.S. District Judge for the Eastern District of New York.

5:20 p.m. Senator Gillibrand spoke in favor of the Hall nomination.

5:10 p.m. Senator Grassley spoke on refugees entering the United States.

5:05 p.m. The Senate moved to executive session to consider the LaShann Moutique DeArcy Hall, to be U.S. District Judge for the Eastern District of New York. There will be a roll call vote on the nomination at 5:30 p.m.

4:30 p.m. Senator Mikulski spoke about her being named as a Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient.

3:03 p.m. Senator Reid spoke about the Paris attacks.

The Senate convened 3:00 p.m. and proceed to a period of morning business until 5:00pm.

At 5:00 p.m., the Senate will enter Executive Session in order to consider the nomination of LaShann Moutique DeArcy Hall to be a United States District Judge for the Eastern District of New York, until 5:30 p.m., when the Senate will proceed to a roll call vote on confirmation of the Hall nomination.

 

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