This Week in Congress: 9.24.07-9.28.07

From solutions to fight global warming to resources on children’s health care, CAP provides you with resources to stay on top of the week on the Hill.


The House and the Senate will both debate the Conference Report on the State Children’s Health Insurance Reauthorization Act this week. The bipartisan compromise measure would provide $35 billion over the next five years to maintain current coverage and expand health insurance to millions more low-income children.

President Bush has threatened to veto the legislation and has instead proposed a mere $5 billion increase in funding spread out over the next five years. His so-called solution would cause hundreds of thousands of children who currently have coverage to lose their access to quality, affordable, and necessary health care.

Read more about SCHIP from the Center for American Progress:

Climate Change

The United Nation will meet this week for “The Future in Our Hands,” a framework convention on the leadership challenge of climate change. The U.N. will use this session to begin discussions on a successor to the Kyoto Protocol, which the United States has failed to ratify. President Bush is planning to skip Monday’s opening speeches and instead host his own conference with 16 other heads of state later this week. He will likely put forth his view that nations should set their own emissions limits rather than adhere to an internationally negotiated standard.

Committees in both the House and the Senate will also discuss global warming throughout the week, beginning with the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s hearing on “Lobbying by the U.S. Department of Transportation Against State Actions to Address Climate Change.”

The House Science and Technology Committee will hear from national security experts on the implications of climate change for national security later in the week. And in the Senate, the Energy and Natural Resources Committee will hold a hearing on scientific assessments of the effects of climate change on wild fire activity and the Environment and Public Works Committee will hold two global warming hearings. The first will address “Green Jobs Created by Global Warming Initiatives,” and the other will address the effects of climate change on the Chesapeake Bay.

See CAP’s interactive map of the world’s top emitters as well as several reports on climate change:

National Security

The Senate continues debate on the Defense Reauthorization Act this week after voting down several important amendments last week, including the Webb amendment, which would have required soldiers to spend as much time at home as they spend deployed, and the Leahy-Specter amendment to restore habeas corpus to detainees at Guantanamo Bay.

Meanwhile the House Armed Services Committee will begin its week with a full committee markup of H.R. 2826 to restore habeas corpus to Guantanamo detainees. The Senate Judiciary Committee also will hear about civil liberties and national security with a hearing on FISA and civil liberties.

The Senate Appropriations Committee hears from Defense Secretary Robert Gates and others as it considers the President’s FY2008 supplemental request for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee assesses the state of Iraqi corruption.

Read about CAP’s plan for a Strategic Reset in the Middle East and the estimated costs of staying in Iraq:

Mortgage Crisis

The crisis in subprime mortgage markets continues to hold Congress’ attention. Committees in both the House and Senate will examine ways to address the crisis and help consumers suffering from the fallout of the subprime mortgage industry’s collapse.

The House Financial Services Committee and Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee will both hold hearings on the role of credit rating industries on the subprime credit market.

CAP’s economists discuss how to prevent the mortgage crisis from hurting the economy as a whole:

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