A Presidential Address to a Joint Meeting of Congress, the Expected Signing of a Controversial Executive Order, and a Multitude of Hearings Highlight the Week's Agenda as Congress Returns from a
Monday, February 27, 2017
The House and Senate return to Washington today after simultaneous week-long recesses. Upon their return, both chambers will remain in session through Friday, April 7, after which they will embark on simultaneous two week-long Spring Break recesses.
The issuance of additional migration-related executive orders, the submission of President Trump’s fiscal year 2018 budget outline, the likely submission of a supplemental appropriations request for building a wall between the U.S. and Mexico, and the opening skirmishes over both finishing the FY ’17 appropriations process and beginning the FY ’18 appropriations process will likely dominate the immigration-, refugee-, and human trafficking-related legislative and executive branch agendas during this work period.
The immigration- and refugee-related agenda for the week ahead will be busy, as well. Indeed, it will likely be the busiest immigration- and refugee-related week yet during the nascent 115th Congress.
The two most significant highlights of the week's immigration- and refugee-related activity will take place on opposite ends of Pennsylvania Avenue; President Trump could as soon as Monday sign a revised refugee admissions/travel ban executive order, and he is scheduled to deliver his first Address to a Joint Meeting of Congress on Tuesday. It is likely that immigration an refugee-related matters will occupy significant space during that address.
Congress has a heavy immigration- and refugee-related agenda this week, as well, with no less than seven hearings scheduled for the week during which immigration-, refugee-, or human trafficking-related matters are likely to be explored.
The Week's Executive Branch Actions
The following executive branch actions that could either reference immigration, refugee, or human trafficking policy or that could significantly impact policy in those areas are scheduled, likely, or possible this week:
- Trump to Address a Joint Meeting of Congress: President Donald J. Trump is scheduled this week to make his first address to a joint meeting of Congress. It is highly likely that the President will make mention of immigration- and refugee matters during the address, which is taking place in the House Chamber.
- Trump Executive Orders: President Trump is expected to sign a revised refugee admissions/travel ban executive order this week.
The Week's House and Senate Floor Actions
No measures that either contain significant immigration- or refugee-related provisions or that could be targets for amendments on those subjects are scheduled for consideration on either the House floor or the Senate floor this week.
The Week's House and Senate Markups
No measures that either contain significant immigration- or refugee-related provisions or that could be targets for amendments on those subjects are scheduled for markup in committees of the House or Senate this week.
The Week's House and Senate Hearings
The following hearings featuring immigration- or refugee-related themes or subjects are scheduled in the House or Senate this week:
- Hearing on FY '18 C-J-S Appropriations: The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies has scheduled a "Members Day" hearing for this week. Among other things, the Subcommittee has appropriating jurisdiction over the Department of Justice's immigration court system (EOIR) and the Department's Office of Immigration Litigation (OIL).
- Hearing on U.S. Foreign Policy in the Western Hemisphere: The House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere has scheduled a hearing for this week titled, "Issues and Opportunities in the Western Hemisphere. Among other things, the hearing is expected to examine issues relating to the U.S. border with Mexico and the migration of families and unaccompanied alien children from the Northern Triangle through Mexico to the United States.
- Hearing on FY '18 LHHS Appropriations: The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies has scheduled a "Members Day" hearing for this week. Among other things, the Subcommittee has appropriating jurisdiction over the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), which operates the federal government's refugee resettlement program, as well a operates programs to assist foreign-born torture victims, trafficking victims, and unaccompanied alien children.
- Hearing on FY '18 DHS Appropriations: The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security has scheduled a "Members Day" hearing for this week. The Subcommittee has appropriating jurisdiction over the Department of Homeland Security, including the Department's Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) components.
- Hearing on FY '18 Budget: The House Committee on the Budget has scheduled a "Members Day" hearing for this week to permit Members of Congress to testify about their budget priorities for the coming fiscal year.
- Hearing on the Impact of "Lax" Border Security on American Communities: The Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs has scheduled a hearing for this week titled, "The Effects of Border Insecurity and Lax Immigration Enforcement on American Communities."
- Hearing on Human Rights in China; The Congressional-Executive Commission on China has scheduled a hearing for this week titled, "The Broken Promises of China's World Trade Organization (WTO) Accession: Reprioritizing Human Rights."