Washington Week Ahead: Debt ceiling drama

By Sara Wyant

© Copyright Agri-Pulse Communications, Inc.

WASHINGTON, May 15 - Although a potential deal to cut spending and raise the federal debt ceiling remains illusive, the U.S. government is expected to hit the $14.294 trillion debt ceiling on Monday.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is expected to take a series of steps which will delay a default until Aug. 2.  But he warned lawmakers that eleven more weeks is all they have to resolve the situation.

Many Republicans and conservative Democrats say they won't vote to increase the debt ceiling without a deal to cut spending. Last week, Vice President Joe Biden signaled that an agreement is starting to take shape among the handful of Congressional leaders he is meeting with in hopes of producing a bipartisan deal. But on CBS's Face the Nation Sunday, House Speaker John Boehner disagreed.

“I'm not seeing any real action,” he said.

Boehner indicated a willingness to consider wide-ranging spending cuts and reforms, but indicated the GOP will be unwilling to raise taxes.

 Together we can feed the Bees

“Everything should be on the table, except raising taxes. Because raising taxes will hurt our economy and hurt our ability to create jobs in our country," Boehner added.

The House is out of session for a Constituent Work Week, but the Senate will focus on a series of hearings and is expected to consider the “Close Big Oil Loopholes Act,” which would require oil companies to pay more taxes.


For more events this week:


Monday May 16, 2011


The Senate is in session at 2 p.m.


USDA reports: Turkey Hatchery, Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook, and Crop Progress

Tuesday May 17, 2011

10:00 a.m., Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resource will receive testimony on four bills related to oil and gas development. 366 Dirksen Senate Office Building.


10:00 a.m., Senate Committee on Finance will hold a hearing on Financing 21st Century Infrastructure. 215 Dirksen Senate Office Building.


11:45 a.m., Deputy Secretary Merrigan will keynote the closing session of the Healthy Farms, Healthy People food policy summit in Arlington, VA. 


USDA reports: Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry Outlook, Agricultural Chemical Usage - Livestock and General Farm Use

Wednesday May 18, 2011

10:00 a.m., Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on “Improving Efficiency and Ensuring Justice in the Immigration Court System: 226 Dirksen Senate Office Building.


2:30 p.m., Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, National Park Subcommittee hearing on twenty bills. 366 Dirksen Senate Office Building.


7:40 p.m. PDT, Deputy Secretary Merrigan will address members of the United Agribusiness League in Newport, CA.


USDA reports: Broiler Hatchery and Milk Production


Thursday May 19, 2011

10:00 a.m., Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources will received testimony on policies to reduce oil consumption through the promotion of advanced vehicle technologies and accelerated deployment of electric-drive vehicles. 366 Dirksen Senate Office Building.


10:00 a.m., Senate Committee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship will hold a hearing on the “Small Business Recovery: Progress Report on Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 Implementation”. 428 Russell Senate Office Building.


2:30 p.m., Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, Water and Power Subcommittee will receive testimony on seven bills. 366 Dirksen Senate Office Building.


4 p.m. PDT, Deputy Secretary Merrigan will deliver remarks to the Sustainable Food Institute's "Cooking for Solutions 2011" conference in Monterey, CA.


USDA reports: U.S. Export Sales, Sugar: World Markets and Trade, Farm Labor, and Vegetables & Melons Yearbook Tables


Friday May 20, 2011

At 3 p.m. CDT, Deputy Secretary Merrigan will host a Women's Roundtable to discuss food insecurity, childhood obesity and nutrition and the disparate impact these crucial issues have on women and girls in Austin, TX.


USDA reports: Dairy Product Prices, Livestock Slaughter, Catfish Feed Deliveries, Catfish Processing, Cold Storage, Cattle on Feed, Peanut Prices, Feed Grains Database, and Wheat Data


To add your event to our calendar, please contact: Sara@Agri-Pulse.com


For other Agri-Pulse news stories, go to: http://www.agri-pulse.com/




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