September 8, 2023

Both houses of Congress were in recess throughout August, and the House doesn’t return until next week.  When Congress does get back to business, they have three weeks before the fiscal year ends and funding for the government, the Farm Bill, FAA authorization and the National Defense Authorization Act all expire. It seems like little progress was made behind the scenes in the last few weeks and I still don’t expect Congress to meet any of those deadlines.  A best-case scenario is a short-term Continuing Resolution (CR) and various short-term extensions of program authorizations, but even that could prove tough.  Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) and members of the Freedom Caucus are talking tough right now and seem willing to shut down government to extract more funding cuts than were already agreed to earlier in the year.   This type of dysfunction could also force a vote on whether Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) retains the speakership, and we may get to witness another 15 rounds of Speaker votes.   My guess is we will see at least some type of government shutdown, if not now, then later in the fall. Conservatives feel empowered and want to test their limits (again). 

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