As the lawmakers of the United States Congress enter theirlnth consecutive work weekin in Washington D.C., theyare tasked with difficult decisions regarding the next fiscal year’s budget, as well as a looming decision regarding the ongoing impeachment inquiry.
The House of Representatives were in recess for a short two-week break, but they are set to return tomorrow to resume their legislative work. Even though they have been away from Capitol Hill, their duties have remained the same: to make decisions which will profoundly affect the lives of all Americans.
The first priority of Congress in regards to the budget is to decide how to approach the spending issue for the next fiscal year. It is expected that President Trump’s proposed budget will cut significantly into the nation’s social welfare net, as well as its entitlement and federal payment programs. Conservatives in Congress have long championed slashing spending to account for the increasing federal deficit, while there have been proposals from the progressive wing of the Democratic Party to increase taxes on the wealthy. These dueling priorities will be in the spotlight as Congress attempts to craft an acceptable budget for the nation.
The other issue that Congress is expected to address is the ongoing impeachment inquiry. Although the specifics on the inquirymay have changed somewhat, the House is still deciding what information should be released to the public about the President’s involvement in what has been termed as a “Ukrainegate” scandal. There have been numerous reports of hearsay in what appears to be a campaign to pressure Ukraine into finding damaging information on former Vice President Joe Biden. The situation has been further complicated by the release of a whistleblower’s report which alleges thatthe President was involved in a cover-up of his activities in Ukraine.
As legislators return to Capitol Hill, they face a monumental task in crafting an acceptable budget that both parties can agree on, as well as the explosive issue of what evidence to release regarding the impeachment inquiry. While it remains to be seen what the outcomes of these issues will be, it is clear that this week will bring about some of the most crucial decisions in modern history.