Washington Weekly
Aug. 25, 2014

Last Week

The House and Senate were in recess.More

This Week

The House and Senate are in recess.More

Item of Interest

Traditionally, the unofficial, but closely watched race for the White House, begins on the Wednesday morning following the midterm elections, Nov. 5 to be exact. With that big event on the horizon, the White House and the President are mindful that as the race for 2016 heats up, his sphere of influence and ability to shape his legacy diminishes over the remaining two years. With a divided House, and the possibility that the Senate could change to Republican control, the President's greatest opportunity to leave his mark is likely in the regulatory arena. As noted below, even his Democratic allies on Capitol Hill are wary of the President's accelerating regulatory agenda, one that if done right, could have sweeping impacts on the business community and will not be easily undone by a new administration.More

Obama Hits the Gas on Regs
The Hill
Groups that closely follow regulations are expecting the Obama administration to continue issuing controversial rules through the midterm elections, despite the political risk it could pose for Democrats. With time running out on President Obama's second term, federal agencies are hitting the gas on a number of regulatory initiatives that are central to the White House's "go-it-alone" agenda.More

How the White House is Changing Obamacare to Comply with Hobby Lobby
The Obama administration released new plans Friday to soften Obamacare's contraception mandate in response to the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby ruling. Certain for-profit companies, like Hobby Lobby, will be able to avoid directly covering birth control, using the same "accommodation" available to employers like Catholic hospitals and universities.More

As Obama Returns, Advocates Look for Executive Action
The Hill
Expectations are high that President Obama can move ahead with controversial executive actions now that he has returned from his vacation. Obama's two weeks on Martha's Vineyard were plagued by dual crises, in Iraq and in Ferguson, Missouri. But his break was also something of a blackout period for news about actions the White House is weighing on immigration reform and so-called corporate "inversions," a business maneuver companies use to reduce their tax burdens.More

How the House GOP is Setting the Agenda for the Party's 2016 Candidates
On Thursday, the nightmare scenario many top Republicans have feared about their upcoming White House primary started to happen.More

Officials: White House Reviewing Equipment Program
The Associated Press via POLITICO
The White House is conducting a review of programs that have equipped local police departments with military gear from the Pentagon, urged by President Obama's call for more separation between the nation's armed forces and civilian law enforcement.More

Understanding Enbridge's Oil Sands Pipeline Tactic From Canada
Roll Call
A pipeline company intends to connect two pipelines in order to add more than 300,000 barrels per day of capacity to cross into the United States from Canada without waiting for the kind of permit that has hampered the Keystone XL Pipeline.More

10 ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Haters
Log onto most social media websites and it is hard to avoid the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Videos of friends, politicians and celebrities are flooding news feeds with the goal of calling attention to and raising money to fight amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, more commonly known as Lou Gehrig's Disease. But while some people are considering the ice bath a good cause, some organizations are seeing the challenge as a cause for issue.More