By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK

If you’re looking to reach influential young professionals, Cheddar is a good bet, and now it’s joining with Hulu. From its post on the news: “Cheddar, the leading live post-cable network, and premium streaming service Hulu today announced a distribution agreement that will bring Cheddar’s live linear network, exclusive morning and afternoon news briefs, and key highlights and select Cheddar Originals to Hulu. In addition to live and on-demand programming being made available on Hulu with Live TV plan, a library of content and exclusive daily news briefs will be available through Hulu’s on-demand service. The channel will launch later this month.

“According to Market Strategies International’s Cogent Reports, 1 in 5 millennials 18–24 know Cheddar (15% of 18–34). Cheddar viewers are decades younger than the average age of viewers of traditional news networks, with a median annual household income of $137,000. Hulu viewers have a median age of 31, about 25 years younger than the average broadcast TV viewers, and a median annual household income of $92,000.” For reference, the median household income in the United States is $57,617.

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IN THE MEDIA

AdAge shares a recent interview with Erik Requidan, the VP of programmatic strategy from the advertising marketing firm Intermarkets – behind websites including Drudge. AdAge notes, “Last October when Time magazine compiled its “most influential websites of all time,” it put the Drudge Report report squarely at No. 8. Eight! The conservative political news site hovers high in the top ten list of U.S. media publishers of the Marketers’ Intelligence Blog, too.” Requidan argues that the sites is more sophisticated than it appears to the regular user. He adds that the sites’ workability is also quite noteworthy, adding that 9 out of 10 users are keying in Drudge Report to go to directly.

Requidan also “mounts a spirited defense of the lowly banner ad, calling it ‘the workhorse of the industry.’”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

This week President Trump will hold a campaign rally in Michigan. The Detroit News reports, “The April 28 rally will be his second trip to Michigan as president after a March 2017 visit to a mobility center in Ypsilanti.” The president is also set to give a speech on drug prices on Thursday. Politico reports, “Trump’s remarks are expected to coincide with a formal request for information from HHS on various drug pricing ideas, according to White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley.”

ON THE HILL

French President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday will address a joint meeting of Congress. On Monday the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is expected to vote on Mike Pompeo’s nomination for Secretary of State. Also this week, the House is expected to consider the FAA Reauthorization bill. FY2019 appropriations hearings also continue this week.  

Monday (April 23): Senate vote on the confirmation of Stuart Duncan to be U.S. Circuit Court judge for the Fifth Circuit; Senate Foreign Relations Committee business meeting on various nominations, including Mike Pompeo to be Secretary of State; House Homeland Security Subcommittee field hearing on federal support to high-risk urban areas (to be held in Staten Island, NY); American Bankers Association Government Relations Summit (through Wednesday);

Tuesday (April 24): Senate Agriculture Committee hearing on the state of rural America, with testimony from Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the posture of the Department of the Air Force, with testimony from Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson and Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein; Senate Finance Committee hearing on early impressions of the new tax law; Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget request of the U.S. Forest Service, with testimony from Interim Chief Vicki Christiansen; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on mitigating America’s cybersecurity risk; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the plight of international parental child abduction and its effect on American families; Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearing on opportunities and challenges for maritime transportation; Senate HELP Committee executive session to vote on the Opioid Crisis Response Act, Over-the-Counter Drug, Safety, Innovation, and Reform Act, Children’s Hospital GME Support Reauthorization Act, Firefighter Cancer Registry Act, and the nominations of Sharon Gustafson (to be general counsel of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) and Jon Peede (to be chairman of the National Endowment of the Humanities); Senate Foreign Relations Committee business meeting and hearing on the nominations of Adm. Harry B. Harris, Jr. (to be ambassador to Australia), Jonathan Cohen (to be deputy representative to the United Nations), and Jackie Wolcott (to be ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency); House Rules Committee hearing on the FAA Reauthorization Act;

Wednesday (April 25): Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing on the nomination of Rear Adm. Ronny Jackson, MD, to be Secretary of Veterans Affairs; Senate Rules Committee hearing on improving procedures for the consideration of Senate nominations; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on the nomination of Christopher Krebs to be undersecretary of the Department of Homeland Security’s National Protection and Programs Directorate; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the nomination of Andrew Oldham (to be circuit judge for the Fifth Circuit) and district court nominees Alan Albright (for the Western District of Texas), Thomas Kleeh (for the Northern District of West Virginia), Peter Phipps (for the Western District of Pennsylvania), and Michael Truncale (for the Eastern District of Texas); Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearing on enhancing the Mammal Protection Act; Joint Economic Committee hearing on how the innovation economy leads to growth; House Appropriations Subcommittee FY2019 budget hearings for the Department of Defense (with testimony in closed session from Defense Secretary James Mattis, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford, Jr., and Undersecretary of Defense David Norquist), U.S. House of RepresentativesGovernment Accountability Office (with testimony from Comptroller General Gene Dodaro), Office of Housing and Federal Housing Administration (with testimony from General Deputy Assistant Housing Secretary Dana Wade, Library of CongressPipeline to the Workforce, and Agriculture and Financial Services member days; House Homeland Security Subcommittee hearing on the future of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, with testimony from Commissioner Kevin McAleenan; House Natural Resources Committee oversight hearing on the “weaponization” of the National Environmental Policy Act and implications of environmental “lawfare”; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearing on HUD’s role in rental assistance and review of legislative proposals on rent reform; House Ways and Means Subcommittee hearing on employer perspectives of the jobs gap; House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee hearing to review VA’s life insurance programs;

Thursday (April 26): Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the Department of Defense budget posture, with testimony from Defense Secretary James Mattis, Undersecretary of Defense David Norquist, and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Joseph F. Dunford, Jr.; Senate Judiciary Committee executive business meeting to consider the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act and Marrakesh Treaty Implementation Act; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee oversight hearing of HHS and DHS efforts to protect unaccompanied alien children from human trafficking and abuse; House Armed Services Subcommittee markups of the FY2019 National Defense Authorization Act; House Appropriations Subcommittee FY2019 budget hearings for the Department of Justice (with testimony from Attorney General Jeff Sessions), Securities and Exchange Commission (with testimony from Chairman Jay Clayton), Environment Protection Agency (with testimony from Administrator Scott Pruitt and CFO Holly Greaves), Federal Communications Commission (with testimony from Chairman Ajit Pai), Federal Transit Administration, Federal Highway Administration, and Maritime Administrator,U.S. Agency for International Development (with testimony from Administrator Amb. Mark Green), Labor/HHS public witnesses, and Homeland member dayHouse Intelligence Subcommittee closed hearing on the CIA’s FY2019 budget; House Homeland Security Subcommittee hearing on the President’s FY2019 budget request for the Department of Homeland Security, with testimony from Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 EPA budget (with testimony from EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt) and perspectives on CFIUS reformHouse Judiciary Committee hearing on the filtering practices of social media platforms; House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on the GAO’s 2018 duplication report; House Foreign Affairs Committee markup of the Department of State Authorization Act and subcommittee hearings on mass migration in Europe and grading counterterrorism cooperation with Gulf Cooperation Council states; House Financial Services Subcommittee oversight hearing of the SEC’s Division of Corporate Finance; House Natural Resources Subcommittee hearings on the importance of offshore energy revenue sharing for Gulf producing states and H.R.5317 and H.R.211House Ways and Means Subcommittee hearing on innovation in healthcare; House Education and the Workforce Subcommittee hearing on worker-management relations and the need to modernize federal labor law; House Science, Space & Technology Subcommittee hearing on the space weather landscape; House Veterans’ Affairs Committee markup of pending legislation;

Friday (April 27): Senate Judiciary Committee nominations hearingHouse Financial Services Subcommittee hearing on the financial institution perspective of implementation of FinCEN’s customer due diligence rule; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on combating robocalls and caller ID spoofing.

By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK

The next time you don’t change the font from default Calibri, perhaps consider the cost that companies go to to license typefaces. AdWeek reports, “Netflix has developed a new bespoke font called Netflix Sans that is clean, functional, subtly inspired by the brand’s famous logo—and perhaps most important of all, economical.

“One of the design leads, Noah Nathan… writes: With the global nature of Netflix’s business, font licensing can get quite expensive. Developing this typeface not only created an ownable and unique element for the brand’s aesthetic (moving Netflix away from Gotham, which is widely used in the entertainment industry), but saves the company millions of dollars a year as foundries move towards impression-based licensing for their typefaces in many digital advertising spaces.” Netflix is not the first company to develop its own font. Others include Apple, Google, IBM, and Samsung.

Another Netflix Nugget: The Washington Post reports, “Comcast said Friday that you will soon be able to purchase a Netflix subscription from the TV and Internet provider as part of a regular bundle of services.”

Bonus Fun Scroll: AdWeek has a separate post about the different typefaces used in popular logos.

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IN THE MEDIA 

Axios’ Sara Fischer reports in her weekly Media Trends newsletter on NBCUniversal’s “new advertising metric called CFlight, which will measure all advertising impressions across all of NBCU — whether those ads were consumed live, on-demand, on linear TV or digital platforms.” These metrics are used to measure the ad’s impact for ad buyers. Deadline reports that NBC cites “its successful measurement of total viewing at the PyeongChang Olympics in February — spanning live, time-shifted and on-demand, on any platform.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

President Trump is expected to host Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at Mar-a-Lago on Tuesday and Wednesday. The Washington Post reports, “Abe is set to arrive Tuesday at Trump’s winter resort in Palm Beach, Fla., for two days of meetings.”

ON THE HILL

Both the House and Senate are in session this week as FY2019 appropriations hearings continue. The House will also consider a series of IRS and identity-protection bills this week. The House Agriculture Committee will also markup the Farm Bill on Wednesday. 

Monday (April 16): Senate vote on cloture on the motion to concur in the House Amendment, with an amendment, to tribal labor sovereignty legislation; House Rules Committee hearing on the 21st Century IRS Act;

Tuesday (April 17): Senate Banking Committee hearing on the nominations of Thelma Drake (to head the Federal Transit Administration), Jeffrey Nadaner (to be assistant Commerce secretary for export enforcement) and Seth Appleton (to be assistant Housing and Urban secretary for policy development and research); Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the nominations of Navy Admiral Philip S. Davidson (to lead U.S. Pacific Command) and Air Force General Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy (to lead U.S. North Command and North American Aerospace Defense Command) and subcommittee hearing on Navy shipbuilding programs; Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the promotion of Vice Admiral Karl Schultz to Admiral and to be Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard; Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on U.S. policy in Yemen (with testimony from Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Satterfield, Acting Assistant Defense Secretary for International Security Affairs Robert Karem, and Deputy Assistant USAID Administrator Robert Jenkins); Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing to examine deferred maintenance and operational needs of the National Park Service; House Appropriations Subcommittee FY2019 budget hearings on the General Services Administration (with testimony from Administrator Emily Murphy), Food and Drug Administration (with testimony from FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb),Government Accountability Office (with testimony from Comptroller General Gene Dodaro), Office of Public and Indian Housing (with testimony from General Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing Dominique Blom), Indian Health Service (with testimony from Acting Director RADM Michael D. Weahkee), U.S. Coast Guard (with testimony from Commandant Paul F. Zukunft), Labor/HHS members day,Commerce, Science, and Justice member dayMilitary Construction member day (with testimony from Reps. Tim Walz, Claudia Tenney, John Rutherford, Mark Takano, and French Hill), and legislative branch members and outside witnessesHouse Financial Services Committee hearing to receive semi-annual testimony on the Federal Reserve’s supervision and regulation of the financial system from Vice Chairman for Supervision Randal Quarles and subcommittee hearing to review legislative proposals for housing choice voucher programs; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearings on Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s FY2019 budget and oversight and perspectives on internet prioritizationHouse Ways and Means Committee hearing to receive federal perspectives on the jobs gap, with testimony from Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta; House Foreign Affairs Committee markup of the Export Control Reform Act, Global Food Security Reauthorization Act, Global Electoral Exchange Act, and Women’s Entrepreneurship and Economic Empowerment Act and subcommittee hearing on the U.S.-Taiwan relationship; House Armed Services Committee hearing on promoting the Defense Department’s culture of innovation and subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 budget request for missile defense and missile defeat programs; House Homeland Security Subcommittee hearing to examine Iran’s global terrorism network; House Judiciary Subcommittee hearings on Federal Bureau of Prisons oversight (with testimony from director Mark Inch) and safeguarding trade secrets in the U.S.House Oversight and Government Reform Joint Subcommittee hearing on continued oversight of the Internal Revenue Service; House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee oversight hearing of the Surface Transportation Board Reauthorization Act (with testimony from Surface Transportation Board Chairman Ann D. Begeman and Vice Chairman Deb Miller); House Natural Resources Committee legislative hearing on three marine conservation bills; The Federalist Society’s Sixth Annual Executive Branch Review Conference; U.S. Chamber of Commerce event on tax reform with Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA); The Hill event on the Latino college graduation gap with Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO) and Reps. Joaquin Castro (D-TX) and Will Hurd (R-TX);

Wednesday (April 18): Senate Judiciary Committee oversight hearing of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (with testimony from USPTO Director Andrei Iancu) and subcommittee hearing on strengthening and reforming America’s immigration court system; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on the nominations of David Williams, Robert Duncan and Calvin Tucker to be governors of the U.S. Postal Service; Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing on the role of states and the federal government in protecting groundwater; Senate Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on accelerating new technologies to meet emerging threats and Air Force modernizationSenate Finance and Joint Select Committee on Solvency of Multiemployer Pension Plans hearing on the history and structure of the multiemployer pension system; Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the Marrakesh VIP treaty; Senate Commerce Committee hearing on abusive robocalls and subcommittee hearing on Olympic abuse and the role of national governing bodies in protecting athletes; House Appropriations Subcommittee FY2019 budget hearings on the Office of Management and Budget (with testimony from OMB Director Mick Mulvaney), Congressional Budget Office (with testimony from Director Keith Hall), Department of Agriculture (with testimony from Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, World Agricultural Outlook Board Chairman Dr. Seth Meyer, and Acting Budget Officer DIehm-Linh Jones), U.S. Forest Service (with testimony from Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue and U.S. Forest Service Interim Chief Vicki Christiansen), Census Bureau (with testimony from Acting Census Bureau Director Ron Jarmin and GAO Director of Strategic Issues Robert Goldenkoff and Director of Information Technology David Powner), The Judiciary (with testimony from Committee on the Budget of the Judicial Conference of the U.S. Chairman John W. Lungstrum and Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts Director James C. Duff), Office of Compliance (with testimony from Executive Director Susan Grundmann), Health and Human Services biodefense activities, and Transportation/HUD member dayHouse Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on U.S. policy in the Middle East (with testimony from Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Satterfield and Assistant Secretary of the State for European and Eurasian Affairs A. Wess Mitchell) and subcommittee hearings on the struggle for unity in Libya and the Dayton legacy and the future of Bosnia and the Western BalkansHouse Homeland Security Committee hearing on lessons learned on homeland threat information sharing; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on oversight and reform of the Defense Department’s 4th Estate and the FY2019 budget requests for Energy, Installations and Environment and ground force modernization; House Natural Resources Committee markup of 7 bills and subcommittee legislative hearing on the Power Counties Act; House Agriculture Committee markup of the Agriculture and Nutrition Act; House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on top management and performance challenges identified government-wide by the inspector general community and subcommittee hearing on artificial intelligence and public policy; House Small Business Committee hearing to examine the Small Business Administration’s 7(a) loans to poultry farmers;

Thursday (April 19): Senate Banking Committee hearing to receive semi-annual testimony on the Federal Reserve’s supervision and regulation of the financial system from Vice Chairman for Supervision Randal Quarles; Senate Judiciary Committee executive business meeting to consider 8 judicial and Justice Department nominations, the Protecting Religiously Affiliated Institutions Act, and Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the posture of the Department of the Navy, with testimony from a panel including Navy Secretary Richard Spencer; Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing to examine rural energy challenges and opportunities; Senate Finance Committee hearing on opioid and substance use disorders in Medicare, Medicaid, and human services programs; House Appropriations Subcommittee FY2019 budget hearings on the State Department’s foreign operations programs (with testimony from State Department Inspector General Steve Linick and USAID Inspector General Ann Calvarsi Barr), Energy and Water member dayInterior member day, and public witnessesHouse Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on the Army’s FY2019 budget request readiness posture and military health system reformHouse Intelligence Subcommittee closed hearing on the FY2019 budget; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on combating robocalls and caller ID spoofing; House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing to examine tax-exempt private activity bonds for All Aboard Florida’s Brightline passenger rail system;

Friday (April 20): House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee field hearing on concepts for the next Water Resources Development Act, to be held in Coos Bay, Oregon.

By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK

With the start of baseball season, there are more ways to catch games online. Mashable reports, “Twitter will live-stream weekly Major League Baseball games this upcoming season, renewing a partnership between the two companies that’s been in place since 2016. Twitter’s partnership is one component of MLB’s effort to distribute its games digitally and on social media. In addition to the Twitter deal, YouTube TV is a presenting sponsor of the World Series, and Facebook recently scored the exclusive rights to air 25 games this year. Unlike Facebook, Twitter broadcasts aren’t exclusive: Each stream is a simulcast with a team’s local TV broadcast.”

A push toward social media streaming fits with the MLB’s attempt to attract younger audiences. Morning Consult polling finds the audience for MLB tends to skew older and proposed changes to speed up the overall game time would likely not have an impact on viewership

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IN THE MEDIA

Recode shares an interview with Financial Times CEO John Ridding recalling the response when they put their content behind a paywall: “reactions in the tech world ranged from skeptical to ‘pretty hostile.’” But now that decision has paid off. “Now the CEO of the FT is feeling vindicated: Subscriptions to online reporting from the Nikkei-owned London-based business newspaper start at $350 per year, and readers are buying. Ridding said two-thirds of the FT’s 900,000 subscribers are digital customers, and subscriptions have overtaken advertising as the chief source of the company’s revenue, also representing about two-thirds of the total.”  

The FT’s approach is different in that, “Rather than giving readers a certain number of free articles per month — the ‘metered’ business model practiced by the New York Times, the Washington Post and Wired, among others — it has shifted in recent years to just give them unfettered access for free for the first month. ‘We thought, what do we really want to do?’ Ridding recalled. ‘We really want to achieve the habit in digital that people used to have in print. A metered model kind of goes against that because you’re, by definition, rationing. … Ideally, you spend a month with the FT, you get to appreciate it, you become a subscriber.’”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

The Hill reports, “President Trump will meet with Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani of Qatar next week at the White House as the Trump administration tries to encourage several Middle Eastern nations to reestablish diplomatic ties with the country. The White House said in a statement Thursday that Trump ‘looks forward to discussing ways to strengthen ties between the United States and Qatar and to advance our common security and economic priorities’ with Al Thani during the meeting Tuesday.”

President Trump will also head to Peru for the Summit of the Americas happening Friday and Saturday, April 13 and 14.

ON THE HILL

Congress returns with all eyes looking to House and Senate hearings with Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg. Committees will also continue work on FY2019 appropriations with several administration officials testifying.

Monday (April 9): Senate resumes consideration of the nomination of Claria Horn Boom to be U.S. District Judge for the Eastern and Western Districts of Kentucky; House Homeland Security Committee field hearing on lessons learned and the path forward from Hurricane Harvey, to be held in Texas;

Tuesday (April 10): Senate Commerce and Judiciary Committee joint hearing on Facebook, social media privacy, and the abuse of data, with testimony from CEO Mark Zuckerberg; Senate HELP Committee hearing on the nomination of Sharon Gustafson to be general counsel of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the posture of the U.S. Transportation Command; Senate Environment and Public Works Subcommittee hearing on state perspectives of cooperative federalism under the Clean Air Act; Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee hearing on the Summit of the Americas; House Rules Committee hearing on the Volcker Rule Regulatory Harmonization Act;

Wednesday (April 11): House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on Facebook’s transparency and use of consumer data, with testimony from CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and subcommittee hearings on the state of restoration of Puerto Rico’s electric infrastructure and improving the ability of Medicare and Medicaid to provide care for patients in combating the opioid crisisHouse Financial Services Committee hearing on the 2018 semi-annual report of the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, with testimony from Acting Director Mick Mulvaney; House Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budgets of the Treasury Department’s International Programs (with testimony from Secretary Steven Mnuchin), Internal Revenue Service (with testimony from Acting Commissioner David Kautter), Department of the Interior (with testimony from Secretary Ryan Zinke, Office of Budget Director Denise Flanagan, and Deputy Assistant Secretary Olivia Barton Ferriter), Department of Homeland Security (with testimony from Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen), U.S. Strategic Command (with testimony in closed session from Gen. John E. Hyten), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (with testimony from RDML Tim Gallaudet, Ph.D.), National Institutes of Health (with testimony from NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins), and U.S. Capitol police, and to receive stakeholder perspectives on FY2019 budget rail safety and infrastructureSenate Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget requests of the Missile Defense Agency (with testimony from Director Lt. Gen. Samuel A. Greaves), Department of Agriculture (with testimony from Secretary Sonny Perdue and USDA Chief Economist Dr. Robert Johansson and Acting Budget Officer Diem-Linh Jones), Department of Transportation (with testimony from Secretary Elaine Chao), Department of Energy and National Nuclear Security Administration (with testimony from Energy Secretary Rick Perry, Undersecretary for Nuclear Security Administrator Lisa Gordon-Hagerty, and Undersecretary for Science Paul Dabbar); House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on the administration’s proposal for financing overseas development (with testimony from Overseas Private Investment Corporation President and CEO Ray Washburne) and subcommittee hearings on North Korea’s diplomatic gambit and an update on the Goldman Act; House Armed Services Committee hearing on the state of cyber operations today and subcommittee hearing to review the Department of Defense budget, strategy, policy, and programs for cyber operations and U.S. Cyber Command for FY2019 (with testimony from Assistant Defense Secretary Kenneth Rapuano and Michael Rogers, the commander of U.S. Cyber Command and director of the National Security Agency); House Natural Resources Committee markup of 5 bills and subcommittee legislative hearing on 4 national heritage and memorial billsHouse Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee roundtable policy discussion on saving taxpayer dollars and the federal real property database; House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing on local responses and resources to curtail the opioid epidemic; Senate HELP Committee hearing on the Opioid Crisis Response Act of 2018; Senate Environment and Public Works Committee legislative hearing on the Utilizing Significant Emissions with Innovative Technologies Act; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the nominations of Mark Bennett (to be U.S. Circuit Judge for the Ninth Circuit), Nancy Brasel (to be District Judge for the District of Minnesota), Robert Summerhays (to be District Judge for the Western District of Louisiana), Eric Tostrud (to be District Judge for the District of Minnesota), and Wendy Vitter (to be District Judge for the Eastern District of Louisiana); Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nominations of Kirsten Madison (to be assistant secretary of State for international narcotics and law enforcement affairs) and Thomas Hushek (to be ambassador to the Republic of South Sudan); Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the nominations of Patrick Fuchs and Michelle Schultz to the Surface Transportation Board; Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing on the nominations of Paul Lawrence (to be Veterans Affairs Undersecretary for Benefits) and Joseph Falvey, Jr. (to be a judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims); Senate Finance Subcommittee hearing on market access challenges in China; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on prioritizing a culture of preparedness at FEMA, with testimony from Administrator Brock Long; Senate Budget Committee hearing on the CBO’s budget and economic outlook for FY2018-2028, with testimony from CBO Director Dr. Keith Hall; Senate Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on U.S. Special Operations Command’s efforts to transform the force for future security challengeshealth of the Department of Defense industrial base and its role in providing readiness to the warfighter, and U.S. nuclear weapons policy, programs, and strategyThe Hill’s Newsmaker Series event with Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD), and Rep. Nanette Barragan (D-CA);

Thursday (April 12): Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nomination of Mike Pompeo to be Secretary of State; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the posture of the Department of the Army, with testimony from Army Secretary Mark Esper and Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley; Senate Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 Labor Department budget request, with testimony from Secretary Alexander Acosta; Senate Finance Committee hearing on the 2018 tax filing season and future IRS challenges, with testimony from Acting IRS Commissioner David Kautter; Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the status of preparation and response capabilities for the next hurricane season; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Subcommittee hearing to review the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs; Senate Judiciary Subcommittee hearing on fentanyl and the opioid crisis; House Ways and Means Committee hearing on the effects of tariff increases on the U.S. economy and jobs and subcommittee hearing to receive local perspectives on the jobs gap; House Budget Committee hearing on the Congressional Budget Office’s budget and economic outlook, with testimony from CBO Director Dr. Keith Hall; House Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budgets of the Transportation Department (with testimony from Secretary Elaine Chao), National Guard and ReserveNational Aeronautics and Space Administration (with testimony from Acting Administrator Robert Lightfoot), Government Publishing OfficeU.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (with testimony from CBP Commissioner Kevin McAleenan and ICE Executive Associate Directors Matthew Albence and Derek Benner), Smithsonian Institution,architect of the Capitolenergy, installations and the environment, and investments in health workforce and rural communities (with testimony from Health Resources and Services Administration Associate Administrators Tom Morris and Luis Padilla); House Homeland Security Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget request for the Transportation Security Administration and challenges facing the Department of Homeland Security’s consolidated headquarters projectHouse Armed Services Committee hearing on the FY2019 National Defense Authorization budget request from the Defense Department, with testimony from Defense Secretary James Mattis and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr. and subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget request for combat aviation programs and the 355-ship Navy planHouse Intelligence Subcommittee closed hearing on the FY2019 budget; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 Energy Department budget; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearings on Federal Housing Finance Agency oversight and the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization ActHouse Administration Committee business meeting to consider the FDLP Modernization Act and Access to Congressionally Mandated Reports Act and hearing to examine the role of shared employees in the House; House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee hearing on lessons learned and ways forward in global health supply chain management; House Natural Resources Subcommittee oversight hearings on the benefits of the Navajo generating station to local economies and FY2019 budget priorities for the Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and Power Marketing AdministrationsHouse Judiciary Subcommittee legislative hearing on the Permitting Litigation Efficiency Act and North Texas Water Supply Security Act; House Oversight and Government Reform joint subcommittee hearing on improper payments in state-administered Medicaid programs and subcommittee hearing on illegal immigrants and U.S. borders;

Friday (April 13): House Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 budget for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, with testimony from Administrator Brock Long; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 military personnel posture; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on challenges and opportunities for high octane fuels and high efficiency vehicles.

By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK

While NCAA upsets may have busted your bracket, it’s good news for some. Time reports, “By becoming the first No. 16 seed to beat a No. 1, the Retrievers made about $1.7 million for the America East Conference. Loyola-Chicago’s buzzer-beating run to the Sweet 16 will be worth double that to the Missouri Valley Conference. Nevada’s consecutive comebacks were also worth about $3.4 million for the Mountain West. The MVC and Mountain West will pocket at least as much from NCAA Tournament units as the Pac-12, which had three teams in the field, all bounced after one game each.

“Units are what the NCAA calls its revenue distributions from the basketball performance fund, which rewards teams for tournament performance. The NCAA Tournament generates more than $700 million in revenue for the association and its schools, the vast majority from its media rights deal with CBS and Turner.”

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IN THE MEDIA

Technology skills are not just something that are reported on – they’re also increasingly necessary within the newsroom. Columbia Journalism Review reports, “A new study from the Tow Center for Digital Journalism examines the career trajectories of New York City journalists to better understand how technical skills have developed in newsrooms since 2010. To do so, we collected the employment histories for 6,116 newsroom staffers and freelancers for newspaper, broadcast, and digital-first companies in the New York City metropolitan area. The 24,598 jobs worked by those individuals were manually aggregated from LinkedIn and verified using other sources, then coded for analysis.

“We find that data, analytic, and platform-based (DAP) jobs have grown substantially in newspaper and online media companies, now accounting for an estimated 9 percent of all jobs in those companies, while the share of traditional, non-DAP jobs decreased 8 percent in online media (9 percent in newspapers and 5 percent in broadcast). These skills have quickly become critical to the day-to-day functioning of newsrooms.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

Reuters reports, “U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday that a comprehensive trade deal with South Korea was close to being done, and his Commerce Department chief said a deal could be formally announced next week.” Cleveland.com adds, “President Donald Trump will visit Richfield, Ohio on Thursday, March 29 to discuss his infrastructure initiatives, White House officials said Friday.”

ON THE HILL

The House and Senate are both out this week and next.

By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK

A recent Pew Research survey found, “26% of American adults now report that they go online “almost constantly,” up from 21% in 2015 …  Overall, 77% of Americans go online on a daily basis. … Among mobile internet users – the 83% of Americans who use the internet at least occasionally using a smartphone, tablet or other mobile device – 89% go online daily and 31% go online almost constantly. Among Americans who go online but not via a mobile device, by comparison, 54% go online daily and just 5% say they go online almost constantly.”

Not surprisingly, the numbers are higher for younger generations. “Younger adults are at the vanguard of the constantly connected: Roughly four-in-ten 18- to 29-year-olds (39%) now go online almost constantly and 49% go online multiple times per day. … Americans ages 30 to 49 are now about as likely as younger adults to use the internet almost constantly (36% versus 39%). The share of 30- to 49-year olds who say this has risen 12 percentage points since 2015.

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IN THE MEDIA

The newest way to reach a sophisticated audience: Branded Podcasts. FastCompany reports on a new trend in which companies, such as ZipRecruiter, are producing an entire podcast series that itself is the advertisement. The series, “amplify a brand’s story, and find an audience of like-minded folks delivered free to consumers.”

Why are companies making such a big investment? “Podcast advertising is on track to hit more than $220 million in 2017, up 85% from 2016. And now that Apple Podcasts is delivering analytics on listeners, advertisers can rest assured that listeners are paying attention. NPR says it’s found that 75% of listeners took action on a sponsored message.”

“Around 67 million people ages 12 and over listen to podcasts each month, according to findings that Edison Research published earlier this year. That’s 21% of Americans, or roughly the same number who use Twitter on a monthly basis. The audience tends to be affluent and educated, and really likes the shows that they click on—a whopping 85% of people who start a podcast listen to all or most of it.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

President Trump plans to travel to New Hampshire Monday. WMUR reports the president, “will hold an event at Manchester Community College and then stop at the Manchester Central Fire Station. Additional details have yet to be disclosed.” The president is expected to address the opioid epidemic.

“Next Thursday, three days after Trump’s visit, Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to make a political appearance at a fundraiser for Gov. Chris Sununu.”

ON THE HILL

Primary focus this week is on an omnibus government funding package; the current government funding bill expires Friday. Administration officials also head to the Hill this week to continue hearings on FY2019 budget requests.

Monday (March 19): Senate votes on the nomination of Kevin McAleenan to be commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection and on cloture on motion to proceed to the Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act; House Rules Committee meeting to consider the Alleviating Stress Test Burdens to Help Investors Act;

Tuesday (March 20): House Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget requests of the Departments of Commerce (with testimony from Secretary Wilbur Ross), Housing of Urban Development (with testimony from Secretary Ben Carson), Education (with testimony from Secretary Betsy DeVos), and National Nuclear Security AdministrationHouse Armed Services Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget request and acquisition reform progress, with testimony from Army Secretary Mark Esper, Navy Secretary Richard Spencer, and Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson, and subcommittee hearings on Navy readiness posture and options for submarine industrial base constructionSenate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget request for the Energy Department, with testimony from Secretary Rick Perry; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on U.S. Strategic Command and subcommittee hearing on Marine Corps ground modernization in review of the FY2019 Defense Authorization request; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act; Senate Finance Committee hearing on the nominations of John Bartrum (to be assistant secretary of Health and Human Services for financial resources) and Lynn Johnson (to be assistant secretary of Health and Human Services for family support); Senate Environment and Public Works Subcommittee hearing on the nomination of John Ryder to the board of directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority; Senate Foreign Relations Committee business meeting to consider 7 resolutions, 5 treaties, and 7 nominations; Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearing to examine NHTSA and automaker efforts to repair defective Takata airbag inflators; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearings on the Drug Enforcement Administration’s role in combating the opioid epidemic, with testimony from Acting DEA Administrator Robert Patterson, and the FY2019 Nuclear Regulatory Commission budgetHouse Natural Resources Subcommittee oversight hearing on the administration’s policy priorities of the FY2019 budget for Indian Affairs and Insular Areas and legislative hearing on two National Park Restoration Fund bills; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearing on the financial nexus of terrorism, drug trafficking, and organized crime; House Judiciary Subcommittee hearings on law enforcement information sharing and preventable violence and the effectiveness of the transitional program for covered business method patentsHouse Small Business Subcommittee hearing on advancing apprenticeships for small business; House Veterans’ Affairs Committee legislative hearing on 4 bills and subcommittee legislative hearing on economic opportunity; House Oversight and Government Reform and Homeland Security Joint Subcommittee hearing to hear government perspectives on CDM security and modernization; House Education and Workforce Subcommittee hearing to examine the Labor Department’s proposed rule on association health plans; House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee hearing on the impacts of the 2017 wildfires in the United States; Business Roundtable and Farmers for Free Trade discussion on trade and American competitiveness with Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and former Sen. Max Baucus (R-MT); Washington Post Live event on artificial intelligence, featuring Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Todd Young (R-IN);

Wednesday (March 21): House Ways and Means Committee hearing on U.S. trade policy agenda, with testimony from U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, and subcommittee hearing on implementation of MACRA’s physician payment policies; Senate Budget Committee hearing on the economic report of the President, with testimony from Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Kevin Hassett; Senate Intelligence Committee open hearing on election security; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the nominations of Michael Scudder (to be Circuit Judge for the Seventh Circuit), Amy St. Eve (to be Circuit Judge for the Seventh Circuit), and Charles Williams (to be District Judge for the Northern District of Iowa); Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nominations of Kirsten Madison (to be assistant secretary of State for international narcotics and law enforcement affairs) and Thomas Hushek (to be ambassador to the Republic of South Sudan) and subcommittee hearing on Lebanon’s stability and security challenges; Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget for veterans’ programs and FY2020 advance appropriations request; Senate Environment and Public Works Committee oversight hearing of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission; Senate Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on ballistic missile defense policies and programs and Navy shipbuilding programs in review of the FY2019 Defense Authorization request; House Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget requests of the Department of Agriculture (with testimony from Secretary Sonny Perdue), National Oceanic and Atmospheric AdministrationOpen World Leadership Trust Fund, and Energy, Installations, and EnvironmentHouse Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on the FY2019 foreign assistance budget, with testimony from USAID Administrator Mark Green and subcommittee hearings on U.S. responses to China’s foreign influence operations and implications of a U.S.-Saudi Arabia nuclear cooperation agreement for the Middle EastHouse Armed Services Subcommittee hearings to receive national security recommendations on state and non-state actor influence operations and on the FY2019 budget requests for ground force modernization and military personnel postureHouse Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on 25 bills to combat the opioid crisis; House Financial Services Committee markup of 8 bills; House Natural Resources Committee markup of 4 bills and subcommittee oversight hearing of the proposed FY2019 spending, priorities and missions of the Bureau of Reclamation and the Power Marketing Administrations; House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee joint hearing on improper payments in state-administered Medicaid programs and hearing on bureaucratic challenges to hurricane recovery in Puerto Rico; House Science, Space & Technology Committee markup of the American Leadership in Space Technology and Advanced Rocketry Act, Commercial Space Support Vehicle Act, and Innovators to Entrepreneurs Act and subcommittee hearing on empowering U.S. veterans through technology; House Administration Committee hearing on the role of shared employees in the House; The Hill’s Newsmaker Series event with Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Reps. Nanette Barragán (D-CA) and Joe Crowley (D-NY);

Thursday (March 22): Senate Finance Committee hearing on the President’s 2018 trade policy agenda, with testimony from U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer; Senate Banking Committee oversight hearing of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, with testimony from Secretary Ben Carson; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on challenges in the Department of Energy’s atomic energy defense programs in review of the FY2019 Defense Authorization request, with testimony from Secretary Rick Perry; Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing to examine the 2018 Western Supply Outlook and three water infrastructure and drought resilience bills; Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearing to examine enhancements to the Marine Mammal Protection Act; House Ways and Means Committee hearing on U.S. trade policy agenda, with testimony from Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross; House Intelligence Committee business meeting to adopt the Committee’s investigative report into Russia’s active measures during the 2016 election; House Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 budget request of the Energy Department’s applied energy programs; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget request for nuclear forces and atomic energy defense activities and the Defense Department’s strategy, policy and programs for countering weapons of mass destruction in FY2019House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee legislative hearing on four communications bills; 

Friday (March 23): Stopgap government funding bill expires; House Veterans’ Affairs Committee field hearing on VA community care in North Carolina.

By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK

Mashable reports on how Slack employees use Slack themselves, and its incredible growth since its start: “Slack officially launched in 2014 as a side-project from Flickr cofounder Stewart Butterfield. When Fast Company spoke with Butterfield the next year, the service had 500,000 daily users. Now, it has more than 6 million daily users with at least 3 million more using it every week.”

Techcrunch adds a note about a new feature that seeks to help you stay organized in Slack. “Over two years after leaving Aol (now known as Oath) back in September 2015 to build a new startup, serial entrepreneur Ryan Block, with co-founder Brian LeRoux, is finally taking the wraps off the new venture:Begin, an intelligent app designed to help you keep track of things that you have to do, and when you should do them, as they come up in the stream of a messaging app. By extension, Begin is also solving one of the more persistent problems of messaging apps: losing track of things you need to remember in the wider thread of the conversation. Begin is launching today as an integration on Slack — which also happens to be one of its backers, by way of the Slack Fund.”

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THE MEDIA

With Opening Day approach (March 29 – Nats home opener April 5), Bloomberg reports, “Facebook Inc. reached a deal with Major League Baseball for exclusive rights to stream 25 afternoon games on the social network in the U.S. It’s the first time a major U.S. league has agreed to show regular season games exclusively on Facebook, which has been building a portfolio of live sports. MLB owners unanimously approved the move, the league said. Neither MLB nor Facebook disclosed the financial terms, though people with knowledge of the matter put the price at $30 million to $35 million.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

The Hill reports, “President Trump will visit California next week to inspect border wall prototypes along the U.S. border with Mexico, the White House said Wednesday. While there, Trump is expected to travel to San Diego to view the eight prototypes for the president’s long-promised border wall.

ON THE HILL

Budget negotiations continue both for current year funding as well as looking ahead to 2019 appropriations, with several cabinet officials testifying this week. Additionally, the Senate will continue consideration of legislation that will roll back some Dodd-Frank provisions. The House will consider legislation aimed at improving school safety as well as a number of financial services bills. Also Tuesday, the special election in Pennsylvania to fill former Rep. Tim Murphy’s seat.

Monday (March 12): Senate cloture vote on the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act; House Oversight and Subcommittee field hearing on the impact of the 2017 hurricane on the U.S. Virgin Islands, to be held in St. Thomas; House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee field hearing on maximizing resources in Puerto Rico, to be held in San Juan; National League of Cities 2018 Congressional City Conference (through March 14)Federal Managers Association’s 80th National Convention (through March 14);

Tuesday (March 13): Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget request for the Interior Department, with testimony from Secretary Ryan Zinke; Senate Armed Services Committeehearing on U.S. Central Command and Africa Command and subcommittee hearing on the cyber posture of the Services in review of the FY2019 defense authorization request; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the Freedom of Information Act, including the administration’s progress on reforms; Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearings on investing in next generation broadband and state and local transportation needs; Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on state fragility, growth, and development, with testimony from Commission on State Fragility, Growth and Development Chairman David Cameron; House Rules Committee meeting to consider the TAILOR Act, Regulation At Improvement Act, and Financial Institutions Examination Fairness and Reform Act; American Enterprise Institute eventon the opioid crisis with Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT);

Wednesday (March 14): House Appropriations Subcommittee FY2019 budget hearings on the Air Force (with testimony from Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson and Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Bureau of Reclamation (with testimony from a panel including Secretary of the Army for Civil Works R.D. James and Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman); House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee hearing to review the FY2019 budget request for the Coast Guard and maritime transportation programs; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on space warfighting readinessthe Air Force’s FY2019 budget request for sea power and projection forces, and the FY2019 budget request for the Defense Department’s science and technology programs; House Homeland Security Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 budget request for the Transportation Security Administration; Senate Commerce Committee hearing on administration perspectives for rebuilding infrastructure, with testimony from Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross; Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the nominations of Theodore Garrish (to be assistant secretary of Energy for international affairs) and James Capos (to be director of the Energy Department’s Office of Minority Economic Impact); Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on legislative proposals to improve school safety and oversight of the Parkland shooting; Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee hearing on the nominations of David Tryon (to be chief counsel of the Small Business Administrator) and Hannibal Ware (to be SBA’s inspector general); Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing on the Agriculture Creates Rural Employment (ACRE) Act; Senate Armed Services Subcommittee hearing on the Department of Energy atomic energy defense activities and programs; Senate Veterans’ Affairs and House Veterans’ Affairs Committee joint legislative presentation of multiple veterans service organizationsSenate Foreign Relations Subcommittee hearings on Somalia’s current security and stability status and food securityHouse Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on protecting cutting-edge technology and national security through modernizing export controls; House Ways and Means Subcommittee hearing to examine recently expired tax provisions;House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on the federal regulatory process and subcommittee hearing on the state of play for federal IT in 2018; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearing to examine cryptocurrencies and ICO markets; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearings on legislation addressing cybersecurity and emergency response in Energy Department modernization and reauthorization of animal drug user fees ADUFA and AGDUFA; House Budget Committee oversight hearing of the Congressional Budget Office with testimony from former CBO Directors Alice Rivlin and Doug Holtz-Eakin, Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget President Maya MacGuineas, and Bipartisan Policy Center senior advisor Sandy Davis; House Rules Committee meetingto consider the Financial Stability Oversight Council Improvement Act and Stress Test Improvement Act; House Natural Resources Committee markupof 6 bills; American Council on Renewable Energy’s Policy Forumwith keynote speeches from Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Ron Wyden (D-OR), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI); Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute Energy Summit; Cato Institute event on the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process, with House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Adam Smith (D-WA);Center for American Progress event on the future of Asia, with keynote remarks from Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX);

Thursday (March 15): Congress hosts the annual Friends of Ireland luncheonhosted by House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) with President Donald Trump and Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar scheduled to participate; House Appropriations Subcommittee FY2019 budget hearings for the Department of Health and Human Services (with testimony from HHS Secretary Alex Azar), Department of Transportation (with testimony from Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao), Department of Energy (with testimony from Energy Secretary Rick Perry), Department of Veterans Affairs (with testimony from VA Secretary David Shulkin), Army (with testimony from Army Secretary Mark Esper and Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley), and the Department of Agriculture’s Office of the Inspector GeneralHouse Natural Resources Committee oversight hearing of the Interior Department’s policy priorities and FY2019 budget proposal, with testimony from Secretary Ryan Zinke, and subcommittee oversight hearing on abandoned hardrock mines and the role of non-governmental entities; House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee hearings on the VA’s FY2019 budget requests for the Veterans Health Administration and Veterans Benefit Administration and Board of Veterans’ AppealsSenate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the State Department’s FY2019 budget request and redesign plans, with testimony from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on U.S. Pacific Command in review of the FY2019 defense authorization request; Senate HELP Committee hearing on the 340B drug discount program; House Homeland Security Committee hearing on preparedness, response, and rebuilding lessons from last year’s natural disasters and subcommittee hearingon U.S. Customs and Border Protection; House Armed Services Committee hearing on security challenges in Europe and posture for interstate competition with Russia and subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget requests for the Air Force’s airborne intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance programsand national security space programs; House Science, Space & Technology Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget request for the National Science Foundation; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearings on the administration’s perspective of CFIUS and the monetization and illicit use of stolen data; House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee hearing on water resources projects and policy; House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing on the federal permitting process; House Foreign Affairs Committee markup of 2 bills and 2 resolutions; Heritage Foundation event on countering authoritarianism and advancing U.S. interests in Latin America, featuring keynote remarks from Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL); National Press Club Headliners luncheon with Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ); The Atlantic Council events on strategic oil product stockholding, with remarks from Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL), and the U.S.-Georgia partnership, featuring keynote remarks from Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Republic of Georgia President Giorgi Margvelashvili; 

Friday (March 16): House Financial Services Subcommittee oversight hearing of the SEC’s enforcement division; House Judiciary Subcommittee oversight hearing of the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

By S-3 Public Affairs

The natural food industry continues to grow, even attracting the attention of venture capitalists. The Wall Street Journal reports on the upcoming Natural Products Expo West, “the niche food sector’s version of the Consumer Electronics Show. … Sales of food made with less-processed ingredients have risen 15% since 2014, more than double the rate of conventional foods, according to Nielsen data. … Investors have also flocked to the event as venture capitalists and an increasing number of big banks look to food startups to try to drive returns. Venture-capital investors closed on more than $1.1 billion worth of food-product deals last year, more than five times the amount in 2012, according to an analysis by PitchBook Data Inc.” 

BONUS FACT: United Launch Alliance this week had its 126th successful launch.

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IN THE MEDIA

Digital Trends reports on a new report from Pew Research that finds, “Facebook and YouTube remain the leaders in terms of social media consumption. Pew reports that 68 percent of all Americans use Facebook, and three-quarters of those users access the site on a daily basis. Among those under the age of 65, Facebook appears to be a fairly universal platform, with a wide range of demographics represented on the site.

“While not a traditional social media site, YouTube does compete with similar sites for user screen time and advertiser dollars. We don’t know the details of YouTube’s financials, but Pew reports that it is doing a good job of capturing user attention. Roughly 74 percent of adults use YouTube (did that redesign help or hurt?), but that number gets even more impressive when looking at the 18-24 demographic. Among younger users, 94 percent of them say they visit YouTube on their computers or smartphones.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

President Trump is expected to sign new tariffs on steel and aluminum next week after he announced the move this past Thursday. The president is also reportedly meeting with video game makers this week in the wake of the Florida school shooting.

ON THE HILL

Negotiations continue toward a government funding bill this week, ahead of the March 23 deadline. Also this week the Senate will vote on a financial services bill – rolling back parts of Dodd-Frank. Reuters reports that the bill has strong bipartisan backing in the Senate and that the bill’s main sponsor, Senator Crapo is looking for policies to add to help accelerate passage in the House. Meanwhile, the House this week is expected to consider two bills aimed at easing EPA rules on air pollution.

Monday (March 5): Senate vote on the confirmation of three district court nominees; House Rules Committee meeting to consider the Satisfying Energy Needs and Saving the Environment Act and Blocking Regulatory Interference from Closing Kilns Act; International Association of Fire Fighters legislative conference (through March 6); America Israel Public Affairs Committee policy conference (through March 6);

Tuesday (March 6): Texas primaries; House Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 Treasury and Labor Department budgets, with testimony from Treasury and Labor Secretaries Steven Mnuchin and Alex Acosta; House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing to examine the administration’s infrastructure proposal, with testimony from Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on worldwide threats, with testimony from Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and Defense Intelligence Agency Director Lt. Gen. Robert Ashley Jr., and subcommittee hearing on Navy and Marine Corps aviation programsSenate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the nomination of James Reilly to be director of the U.S. Geological Survey; Senate Finance Committee hearing on protecting e-commerce consumers from counterfeits; Senate and House Veterans’ Affairs Committee joint legislative presentation of multiple veterans service organizations; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on the Navy’s FY2019 budget request for seapower and projection forcesnational security challenges and U.S. military activities in Africa, and Marine Corps readiness posture; House Financial Services Committee markup of FY2019 budget views and estimates; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee oversight hearing of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, with testimony from Assistant Commerce Secretary for Communications and Information David Redl; House Small Business Subcommittee hearing on rural broadband and the business case for small carriers; House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing examining the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and roundtable discussion with Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat; House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing to examine class action lawsuits against intermediate care facilities for individuals with intellectual disabilities; House Natural Resources Subcommittee oversight hearing on solutions to reduce the Interior Department’s maintenance backlog; House Science, Space & Technology Subcommittee hearing on the future of U.S. fusion energy research; House Education and Workforce Subcommittee hearing on strengthening welfare to work with child care; Roll Call Live/CQ News event on healthcare, with speakers including Reps. Peter Roskam (R-IL) and Sandy Levin (D-MI);

Wednesday (March 7): Joint Economic Committee hearing to receive the Economic Report of the President, with testimony from Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Kevin Hassett; House Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s FY2019 budget, with testimony from Chairman Chris Giancarlo, and the Navy and Marine Corps’ FY2019 budget, with testimony from Navy Secretary Richard Spencer, Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Robert Neller, and Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson; House Science, Space & Technology Subcommittee hearing on the NASA budget for FY2019, with testimony from Acting Administrator Robert Lightfoot; Senate Budget Committee hearing on the Defense Department’s audit and business operations reform at the Pentagon; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the nominations of John Nalbandian (to be U.S. Circuit Judge for the Sixth Circuit), Kari Dooley (to be District Judge for the District of Connecticut), Dominic Lanza (to be District Judge for the District of Arizona), Jill Otake (to be District Judge for the District of Hawaii), and Joseph Hunt (to be Assistant Attorney General of the Civil Division), and subcommittee hearing on small business bankruptcy; Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nomination of Joseph Macmanus to be ambassador to Colombia; Senate and House Veterans’ Affairs Committee joint legislative presentation of Veterans of Foreign Wars; Senate HELP Committee executive session to vote on various nominations; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee business meeting to consider the Department of Homeland Security Authorization Act and nomination of Michael Atkinson to be inspector general of the intelligence community; Senate Special Committee on Aging hearing on “stopping senior scams”; House Homeland Security Committee markup of 11 bills and subcommittee hearing on DHS’ efforts to strengthen its cybersecurity workforce following a recent GAO report; House Armed Services Committee hearing to assess military service acquisition reform and subcommittee hearings on U.S. strategic forces posture and the FY2019 budget request and the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Lightning II programHouse Budget Committee hearing on CBO oversight with testimony from Members of the House; House Veterans’ Affairs Committee oversight and legislative hearing on two bills and two draft bills; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearings to review the State Insurance Regulation Preservation Act and two legislative proposals to reform the current data security and breach notification regulatory regimeHouse Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearings on emerging tech’s impact on retail operations and logistics and the future of transportation fuels and vehiclesHouse Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee hearings on long-term funding for highways and transit programs and implementation of Coast Guard programsHouse Ways and Means Subcommittee hearing on challenges facing the Social Security Administration after over 5 years of acting commissioners; House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing on artificial intelligence and the federal government; House Natural Resources Committee markup of the National Strategic and Critical Minerals Production Act, Federal Land Transaction Facilitation Act Reauthorization and a bill to extend retained use estate in in the Virgin Islands; House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee hearing on China’s role in Africa; House Administration Committee hearing on management of the Government Publishing Office; America’s Health Insurance Plans National Health Policy Conference (through March 8); Ripon Society event on “The New NAFTA” with Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS) and Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX); The Latino Coalition legislative summit;

Thursday (March 8): Senate HELP Committee hearing on state leadership and innovation in the opioid crisis; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on U.S. European Command; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on Mobility and Transportation Command posture and Arlington National CemeteryHouse Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on U.S. public health preparedness for and response efforts to seasonal influenza; Democratic National Committee winter meeting (through March 10).

By S-3 Public Affairs

Axios’ Steve LeVine reports on a mobile payment platform that has seen incredible growth in the United States in recent years. “Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce rival to Amazon, is making its first big push into the American market with a substantial play by its affiliate, Alipay. It’s built around China’s two-week lunar new year celebration, which has brought thousands of Chinese tourists to the United States, most of whom prefer to spend at retailers that accept a mobile wallet. At home, some 520 million Chinese retail shoppers use Alipay. But last year they also took 135 million journeys abroad, including to Europe and the U.S. Given their payment preferences, shopping has been a stumbling block. But now, Alipay has payment agreements with some 170,000 North America retail locations, reports Fung Global Retail Tech’s Deborah Weinswig.”

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IN THE MEDIA

The Wall Street Journal reports on how media outlets are transferring data intelligence to the business side of their operations. “Publishers are increasingly building data science tools to boost web traffic and lure subscribers. Now, the New York Times is giving those tools to marketers to help drum up new business. The newspaper announced on Thursday the launch of a new team focused on adapting tools from groups specializing in data science, product and design, technology, and advertising. … The Times has already invested in tools to help understand its subscribers and their needs, which can be deployed for marketers. The new team will be able to work with T Brand Studio to help bring in more advertising clients and build more tailored branded content offerings. Other publishers have turned their capacities for data crunching into a business opportunity. In June, Bloomberg hired Havas Creative Group Chief Executive Andrew Benett, who has been using the company’s audience data in consultation with brands. The Washington Post adapted ‘Post Pulse,’ a tool for tracking the company’s trending stories, for clients including Sprint, BMW and Chevy.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

President Trump is expected to hold a meeting Tuesday to discuss biofuels policy, with participants including Senators Ted Cruz, Chuck Grassley, and Joni Ernst, as well as EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, and others. Reuters reports“The meeting comes as the oil industry and corn lobby – powerful forces in Washington – clash over the future of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), a decade-old regulation that requires refiners to cover the cost of mixing biofuels such as corn-based ethanol into their fuel. Trump’s engagement reflects the high political stakes of protecting jobs in a key electoral state. Oil refiner Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES), which employs more than a thousand people in Philadelphia, declared bankruptcy last month and blamed the regulation for its demise.”

ON THE HILL

Both the House and Senate return this week as negotiations on an omnibus spending package and an immigration bill continue. The House will vote on a financial services bill as well as a sex trafficking bill. The Senate on Monday will have a cloture vote on the nominations of Elizabeth Branch (to be U.S. Circuit Judge for the Eleventh Circuit), Russell Vought (to be deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget), and four district court nominees.

NOTE: The House and Senate are in session this week but the House has canceled votes on Wednesday and Thursday for the late Rev. Billy Graham to lie in honor in the Capitol Rotunda.

Monday (February 26): House Rules Committee meeting to consider the Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act, the Comprehensive Regulatory Review Act, and a measure to place requirements on operational risk capital requirements for banking organizations; House Intelligence Committee business meeting on the adoption of the Committee’s FY2019 budget views and estimates letter; House Small Business Committee field hearing on closing the skills gap in workforce development;

Tuesday (February 27): House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on the FY2019 foreign affairs budget, with testimony from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and subcommittee hearing on women’s role in countering terrorism; House Financial Services Committee hearing on monetary policy and the state of the economy, with testimony from Federal Reserve Board Chairman Jerome Powell; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing to receive testimony on U.S. Cyber Command from National Security Agency Director Adm. Michael S. Rogers in review of the defense authorization request for FY2019; Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nominations of Kevin Moley (to be assistant secretary of State for international organization affairs) and Josephine Olsen (to be director of the Peace Corps); Senate HELP Committee hearing on the role of technology and data in preventing and treating opioid addiction; Senate Veterans Affairs’ Committee hearing on legislative presentation of disabled American veterans; House Ways and Means Committee markup of the Committee’s FY2019 budget views and estimates; House Agriculture Committee markup of the Committee’s FY2019 budget views and estimates; House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on federalism implications of treating states as stakeholders, with testimony from Utah Governor Gary Herbert, New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez, and Idaho Governor Butch Otter; House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing on the state of aviation safety, with testimony from representatives of the FAA, NASA, NTSB, Department of Transportation, and the Airline Pilots Association; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on the state of the nation’s energy infrastructure; House Budget Committee oversight hearing of the Congressional Budget Office and the role of behavioral modeling in scoring and baseline construction; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearing on terrorism and Iran and defense challenges in the Middle East;House Homeland Security Subcommittee hearings on TSA’s outreach and traveler engagement efforts and industry recommendations to improve DHS contractor employee vettingHouse Natural Resources Subcommittee hearings on two coastal barrier bills and liquefied natural gas and U.S. geopolitics; House Small Business Subcommittee hearings on how excessive licensing hurts small business and a GAO report on how red tape affects community banks and credit unionsHouse Judiciary Subcommittee hearings on competition in the pharmaceutical supply chain and the proposed merger of CVS Health and Aetna and implementation of the Survivors’ Bill of Rights ActHouse Science, Space & Technology Subcommittee hearing on sexual harassment and misconduct in science; House Education and Workforce Subcommittee hearing on a more effective and collaborative OSHA;

Wednesday (February 28): Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing to review FY2019 State Department budget request and redesign plans, with testimony from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson; Senate Commerce Committee executive session to consider the Modernizing Recreational Fisheries Management Act and four nominees to the Federal Trade Commission and hearing on implementation of positive train control; Senate HELP Committee executive session to consider the Animal Drug and Animal Generic Drug User Fee Amendments, Childhood Cancer STAR Act, State Offices of Rural Health Reauthorization Act, and the Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Act; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee business meeting to consider the Department of Homeland Security Authorization Act and nomination of Michael Atkinson to be inspector general of the intelligence community; Senate Environment and Public Works Committee oversight hearing of the FBI headquarters consolidation project; Senate Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee hearing on 5 bills; Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing on legislative presentation of the American Legion; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearings to receive an update on the restoration of Puerto Rico’s electric infrastructure and review legislative proposals to combat the opioid crisis and help communities balance enforcement and patient safety; House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee hearing on Zimbabwe after Mugabe; House Natural Resources Subcommittee legislative hearing on four special resource study bills;

Thursday (March 1): Senate Banking Committee hearing on the semiannual monetary policy report to Congress, with testimony from Federal Reserve Board Chairman Jerome Powell; Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nominations of Robert Pence (to be ambassador to Finland) and Dr. Judy Shelton (to be executive director of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development); Senate HELP Committee hearing on the nomination of John Ring to be a member of the National Labor Relations Board; Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing on the administration’s framework for rebuilding infrastructure; Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on cybersecurity in our nation’s critical energy infrastructure; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Subcommittee hearing examining federal managers’ role in hiring.

 

By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK

The AP reports on how Olympic athletes are using social media to build their own brands prior to the games, winning endorsements before winning medals. The Olympic stage, however, has also dramatically boosted these athletes’ profiles. “Before breakout star Chloe Kim won gold in the snowboarding halfpipe event, her infectious personality and heartwarming origin story had already won her sponsorships from Toyota, Samsung, Visa and others. Of course, winning a gold medal amplifies an athlete’s reach. When Kim started the Olympics, she had 15,000 Twitter followers. She now has more than 285,000. She charmed thousands with tweets about eating ice cream and churros and being ‘hangry’ because she didn’t finish breakfast before her race. … While social media was around during prior Olympics, they have a much bigger presence this time around, with everything from Instagram “Stories” to auto-play videos on Twitter parlaying brand messages. The speed in which athletes break out to become stars happens more quickly now.”

CONTINUE READING

IN THE MEDIA

Spending the long weekend binge watching the Olympics? Chances are you are watching on broadcast TV.  Morning Consult’s Anna Gronewold writes, “For the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, NBC is making a big push with digital broadcasting, livestreaming 1,800 hours of coverage — what the network called a record for a Winter Olympics. But more than three-quarters of likely U.S. viewers say they plan to watch the games through traditional television broadcasts.”

Recode adds a note about the ongoing competition for the streaming rights for NFL Thursday Night Football. “Twitter, Amazon, YouTube and Verizon are the remaining bidders, according to multiple sources. Twitter paid $10 million for these digital streaming rights from the NFL in 2016; Amazon won them in 2017 for $50 million, with the latest renewal going for much more. Verizon is an existing NFL partner and already owns some mobile streaming rights for Thursday. YouTube is the only company without a prior streaming relationship with the league, though CEO Susan Wojcicki said just this week that she would ‘love to stream the NFL.’”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

President Trump will travel to the Pittsburgh area on Wednesday, February 21, for a campaign rally. The Washington Examiner reports that this will “[mark] the 20th campaign rally Trump has held in Pennsylvania since 2015. ‘This rally will provide an excellent opportunity for the President to connect once again with hard working Americans in the local community,’ Michael Glassner, executive director of Donald J. Trump for President, Inc., said in a statement. ‘President Trump looks forward to an exciting visit to the Pittsburgh area to deliver the amazing news about our booming economy now that America is once again open for business.’”

ON THE HILL

The House and Senate are both out this week. The Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) takes place Wednesday through Friday (February 21-24) at the Gaylord just outside D.C. with speakers including President Trump (Friday) and Vice President Pence. The National Governors Association Winter Meeting begins Friday through next Sunday (February 23-26) in D.C.

By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK:

Amazon’s purchase of Whole Foods last year raised attention for the growing food delivery industry. Just this week Amazon announced free two hour Whole Foods delivery in a handful of markets (DC is not one yet, sorry). CNBC reports, “According to projections, 70 percent of shoppers will be buying some portion of their groceries online within five to seven years. That could equate to $100 billion in total spending. … The shift is already evident: 49 percent of all shoppers bought a packaged good online within the last three months. That includes 61 percent of millennials and 44 percent of baby boomers. It also includes 54 percent of affluent households and 40 percent of low-income households.”

This trend is making an impact not just on grocery stores but also on the restaurant industry. Bloomberg reports, “Yum! Brands Inc., the corporate parent of Pizza Hut, KFC and Taco Bell, said Thursday it would buy a $200 million stake in GrubHub Inc., which will help deliver food from thousands of KFC and Taco Bell restaurants across the U.S., giving those chains a big lift in a growing market. … Yum is essentially acknowledging that, to build an audience for KFC and Taco Bell delivery, it needs access to GrubHub’s fast-growing customer base, which included 14.5 million active diners in the latest fiscal year.”

The New Yorker talked to several restaurants about the negative impact this is having on their businesses. “In 2016, delivery transactions made up about seven per cent of total U.S. restaurant sales. In a research report published last June, analysts at Morgan Stanley predicted that that number could eventually reach forty per cent of all restaurant sales, and an even higher percentage in urban areas and among casual restaurants, where delivery is concentrated.”

CONTINUE READING

IN THE MEDIA:

Recode reports on Snapchat’s latest effort to attract new advertisers: “Snap wants to attract new advertisers — specifically, it wants to attract advertisers who are spending money with its biggest competitor, Instagram. To lure them over, Snap is reaching out to those advertisers that are buying vertical video ads on Instagram and other competitors, and offering them free advertising credits to give Snapchat a try. … The program is technically open to advertisers who bought vertical video ads anywhere else online, but Instagram is the most likely place Snap will find new targets.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION:

The White House is expected to release its FY2019 budget and infrastructure proposal both on Monday. OMB Director Mick Mulvaney will head to Capitol Hill for several budget hearings this week, beginning with the Senate Budget Committee on Tuesday and House Budget Committee on Wednesday. Treasury Secretary Mnuchin will testify at the Senate Finance Committee on Wednesday and at the House Ways and Means Committee on Thursday.

ON THE HILL:

It’s a busy week on Capitol Hill with several hearings on the White House Budget request. The Senate is also expected to begin debate on immigration on Monday evening. The House is expected to consider two financial services bills.

Monday (February 12): Senate Foreign Relations Committee closed hearing on the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, with testimony from Assistant Secretaries of State A. Wess Mitchell and Christopher Ford;

Tuesday (February 13): Senate Budget Committee hearing on the President’s FY2019 budget proposal, with testimony from Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney; Senate Intelligence Committee open hearing on worldwide threats; Senate HELP Committee hearing on reauthorization of FDA animal drug user fees; Senate Armed Services Subcommittee hearing on the Defense Department’s role in protecting democratic elections; House Rules Committee meeting on the TRID Improvement Act, Protecting Consumers’ Access to Credit Act, and ADA Education and Reform Act;

Wednesday (February 14): Senate Finance Committee hearings on the President’s FY2019 budget with testimony from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin in the morning and from Acting IRS Commissioner and Assistant Treasury Secretary for Tax Policy David Kautter in the afternoonSenate Judiciary Committee hearing on the nominations of Joel Carson (to be a Circuit Judge for the Tenth Circuit), Colm Connolly (for a District of Delaware judgeship), William Jung (for a Middle District of Florida judgeship), Maryellen Noreika (for a District of Delaware judgeship), and Ryan Holte (for a Court of Federal Claims judgeship); Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the President’s four nominees to the Federal Trade Commission; Senate Small Business Committee hearing on the nominations of David Tryon to be chief counsel for advocacy of the Small Business Administration and Hannibal Ware to be its inspector general; Senate Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on the current readiness of U.S. forces and military and civilian personnel program and military family readiness; Senate HELP Committee hearing on the nomination of John Ring to be a member of the National Labor Relations Board; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs business meeting to consider the nominees for director and deputy director of the Office of Personnel Management, 9 bills, and 22 postal naming bills; Senate Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee legislative hearing on 19 National Parks bills; House Budget Committee hearing on the President’s FY2019 budget with testimony from Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney; House Ways and Means Committee hearing on the Department of Health and Human Services’ FY2019 budget request; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee oversight hearing of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, with testimony from Deputy Administrator Heidi King and subcommittee hearings on the impact of healthcare consolidation and new source review permitting challenges for manufacturing and infrastructureHouse Financial Services Subcommittee hearings on the current data security and breach notification regulatory regime and 11 legislative proposals regarding derivativesHouse Science, Space and Technology Subcommittee joint hearing on emerging applications for blockchain technology; House Armed Services Committee hearing on the military and security challenges and posture in the Indo-Pacific region and subcommittee hearing on Air Force readiness posture; House Foreign Services Committee hearing on modernizing food aid and subcommittee hearings on Israel, the Palestinians, and the Administration’s peace plan and advancing U.S. interests through the Organization of American StatesHouse Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing on artificial intelligence; House Education and the Workforce Subcommittee hearing on the government’s management of Native American schools; House Natural Resources Committee markup on 3 national monument and redesignation bills and subcommittee oversight hearing on the state of the nation’s water and power infrastructure; Bipartisan Policy Center event on budgeting for biodefense, featuring Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr (R-NC);

Thursday (February 15): Senate Finance Committee hearing on the President’s FY2019 budget, with testimony from Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar; Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nominations of Andrea Thompson (to be Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security), Francis Fannon (to be Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources), and Susan Thornton (to be Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs); Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee hearing on the state of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, with testimony from Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo; Senate Judiciary Committee executive business meeting to vote on the nominations of 4 judicial nominees and Adam Klein to be chairman of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board and on the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the Defense Authorization request for U.S. Northern Command and U.S. Southern Command; House Ways and Means Committee hearing on the President’s FY2019 budget proposal, with testimony from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee oversight hearing of the Department of Health and Human Services; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearings on de-risking and its effect on access to financial services and the financial nexus of terrorism, drug trafficking, and organized crimeHouse Homeland Security Subcommittee hearings on industry views of the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards program and TSA’s outreach and traveler engagement effortsHouse Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing on the General Services Administration; House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing on the effect of sanctuary city policies on the ability to combat the opioid epidemic; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on strategic competition with China and the FY2019 budget request for U.S. Special Operations Forces and CommandHouse Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee oversight hearing of positive train control implementation in the U.S.; House Natural Resources Committee legislative hearings on the National Strategic and Critical Minerals Production Act and 5 bills and subcommittee oversight hearing on the costs of denying border patrol access; House Science, Space and Technology Subcommittee hearing on mentoring, training, and apprenticeships for STEM education and careers; House Small Business Subcommittee hearing on how agritech is revitalizing the Heartland; House Education and the Workforce Subcommittee joint hearing on the implications of the opioid epidemic for America’s workplaces; The Ripon Society event on the goals of the Main Street Caucus, featuring Chairman Rodney Davis (R-IL) and Co-Chairs Jeff Denham (R-CA) and Fred Upton (R-MI); American Enterprise Institute event on securing the internet of things, with Sen. Edward Markey (D-MA) and Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA); 

Friday (February 16): Senate Finance Subcommittee hearing on trade enforcement and infrastructure; House Energy and Oversight Subcommittee oversight hearing of the Federal Communications Commission; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearing on the administration’s perspective on CFIUS.