Situation Report | September 7, 2021
Story contributed by Brett Heimov, Managing Partner, Envision Strategy
Congress will return from its August recess to a litany of issues and reconciliation will be at the top of the list. Democrats will try to use this process to pass a bill upwards of $3.5 trillion, mostly on social spending that will include Medicaid expansion and some, if not all, of the Better Care Better Jobs Act, as well as numerous other domestic priorities.
Recently, several moderate Democrats made it clear they want to reduce the amount of the reconciliation bill, and Senator Manchin (D-WV) has said the entire bill should be put on hold. Negotiations have begun behind closed doors to determine what level of spending will be acceptable to the moderates as every Democratic vote is needed to pass reconciliation. When, and if, an acceptable level is agreed upon we will be able to better determine how much of the Better Care Better Jobs Act will be included in a final bill.
At the same time, Congress is expected to pass a bi-partisan transportation bill by the end of September and will need to address the debt ceiling. If the debt ceiling is not raised, the Federal Government will default and there could be serious consequences to the economy. Congress is expected to use a continuing resolution to keep the government funded through December. It is unclear if there will be several short-term continuing resolutions or one longer one passed by the end of September. It is then expected that an omnibus appropriations bill will be used sometime in December to fund the government for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2022.
We will continue to monitor the situation around these issues and advocate for home care in the reconciliation bill and the appropriations process.