The Trump presidency is halfway through its first 100 days. The legislative and executive branches are under a unified Republican government for only the second time since the Eisenhower administration, and the GOP is seeking to use this rare opportunity to advance its policy agenda. The Republicans’ early priorities, including the Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolutions and Cabinet nominations, are simple majority votes. Debate continues to swirl within the GOP over the Obamacare repeal and replace reconciliation bill, with some Republicans in Congress viewing the recently released legislation as insufficiently conservative, while others worry that it is too far to the right. Similar conflicts are likely to emerge in the coming months in the debate over tax reform, in which Republicans continue to struggle to unify behind an approach to lowering rates.
As we enter the second half of the Trump administration’s first 100 days, the White House and congressional Republicans are expected to continue their push for regulatory reform, and all eyes will be on the Senate Judiciary Committee later this month as the Senate begins consideration of Judge Neil Gorsuch’s nomination to the Supreme Court. Funding the federal government beyond April 28, 2017, will be one of the first major tests of whether Republicans and Democrats can work together to get 60 votes in the Senate. Finally, one issue that will continue to grow in urgency in the coming months is the debt limit. The Treasury’s statutory power to raise the limit expires on March 16, 2017, but the administration will deploy “extraordinary measures” to push back the actual default date to later in the year, buying Congress additional time to act.
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