Week in Review, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Sequester

February 25th 2013  |  Week in Review

From all indications last week, Congress will not act to postpone the sequester currently on schedule to go into effect in less than 100 hours on March 1st. Instead, members seem to be hedging bets on the constituent response to what has been called on both sides of the aisle a “poison pill”. The strategy [...]

Week in Review, or Super Bowl Surprise

February 4th 2013  |  Week in Review

Fans and players enjoying the Super Bowl last night were caught by surprise early in the third quarter when half of the electricity in the New Orleans Superdome went out. While waiting for the power to come power back on, I had my eye on Twitter, which was flooded almost immediately with tweets about improving [...]

Week in Review, or Examining Energy

June 4th 2012  |  Week in Review

The Senate continued its Memorial Day recess last week, but the House returned mid-week for two days of activity. During that short time, the House debated the FY 2013 spending bills for Military Construction/Veterans Affairs (which ultimately passed) and Energy and Water. The debate on Energy and Water, which funds research programs at the Department [...]

Week in Review, or Dragon Docking

May 29th 2012  |  Week in Review  |  1 Comment

I was sitting in a public meeting of the Presidential Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) on Friday when the big screen shifted from the standard Powerpoint deck to CNN. We watched live as the Dragon spacecraft connected with the International Space Station, representing the first feat of its kind by a commercially [...]

Week in Review, or Have I Got an Idea for You

October 24th 2011  |  Week in Review

The Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction is busy sorting through over 180,000 letters they have reportedly received from members of Congress, advocacy groups, and the general public offering ideas on how to reduce the deficit. While October 14th was the official deadline for Congressional committees to submit their recommendations, the letters continue to roll [...]

Week in Review, or Wheels in the Sky

July 18th 2011  |  Week in Review

The House had a productive week in the appropriations arena, with the full Appropriations Committee reporting out the FY 2012 Commerce, Science, and Justice and Interior-Environment spending bills and the House passing the FY 2012 Energy and Water spending bill (more below). The Senate is still holding off on moving the majority of their spending [...]

Week in Review, or Fiscal Fireworks

July 11th 2011  |  Week in Review

Washington was abuzz with a lot more than fireworks last week, which is definitely not the norm for a fourth of July week during which Congress would normally be in recess. As reported in my last update, the Senate cancelled their recess in order to allow more time for debt ceiling/deficit negotiations. The House took [...]

Week in Review, or Patent Progress

June 27th 2011  |  Week in Review

The House of Representatives marked up its financial services FY 2012 appropriations bill last week and was expected to vote on the FY 2012 DoD appropriations bill, but ended up delaying the vote until the House comes back from recess the week of July 4th.  The House also passed the long-awaited patent reform bill, the [...]

Week in Review, or Regarding Research Reductions

June 6th 2011  |  Week in Review

The Fiscal Year (FY) 2012 appropriations process moved forward in the House of Representatives this week, with the full chamber passing the Homeland Security bill, the full Appropriations Committee passing the Agriculture bill, and the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee passing its bill. Each of these bills included varying degrees of cuts to research [...]


appropriations bill: proposed legislation that outlines how federal money is spent to carry out various functions and programs. authorization bill: proposed legislation that permits the federal government to carry out various functions and programs. committee markup: refers to the process by which a congressional committee debates, amends, and rewrites proposed legislation. debt ceiling: A limit, [...]