TenCount -> President Trump declared the G20 summit a success

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TenCount -> President Trump declared the G20 summit a success

A highly selective view of events in the week ahead with important financial, legislative and political implications, put together by your friends at Sphere Consulting.

Edited by Edward Wyatt

  • Members of the House and Senate are probably happy to return to Washington after a week spent ducking constituents intent on harassing them about the health care bill. But there will be little respite once they arrive back in the capital. With only 13 legislative days left in the House before the August recess (15 in the Senate, which is more loathe to turn every weekend into a three-day holiday), there is likely to be a flurry of activity on health care, the budget, and trade.
  • President Trump declared the G20 summit a success for the United States, but other observers were not so sure. The one tangible benefit from Trump’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, a Syrian cease-fire, took effect Sunday. But President Trump seemed to accept it at face value when Putin “vehemently denied” Russian interference in the 2016 presidential campaign, and on Sunday he backtracked on a proposed cybersecurity cooperative agreement with Russia, saying it wouldn’t happen.
  • Donald Trump Jr.’s shifting explanations about the reason behind a meeting with a Russian operative in June 2016 ensure that the Russia probe will continue to dominate headlines for much of the rest of the year. After saying the primary reason for the meeting was to discuss an adoption program, the younger Trump admitted on Sunday that the Russian contact claimed to have damaging information on Hillary Clinton. Jared Kushner and then-campaign manager Paul Manafort also attended.
  • Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen troops to Capitol Hill this week for her regular, semiannual testimony to the House and Senate on monetary policy, supervision and regulation of the financial system, and the possibility of further interest rate hikes this year. First, on Wednesday morning, comes a hearing in front of the House Financial Services Committee followed on Thursday morning by the Senate Banking Committee.
  • Christopher Wray, President Trump’s nominee to take over as director of the F.B.I., will face off in a confirmation hearing with the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday. A former federal prosecutor who recently defended New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in the Bridgegate scandal, Wray is likely to field questions about his views on the Bureau’s independence from the president and potential conflicts of interest.
  • A day earlier, Senate Judiciary’s subcommittee on crime and terrorism will conduct a previously postponed hearing entitled “Concurrent Congressional and Criminal Investigations: Lessons From History,” looking at the precedents for today’s dueling investigations into Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election – investigations that are likely to come up in Wray’s hearing the following day.
  • Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai wants to crack down on robocalls, those annoying telephone calls that occur most often just as you’ve carved the roast and are sitting down to a fine dinner. At its monthly meeting Thursday, the commission is expected to approve two Notices of Inquiry to look into methods to protect both cellular and home phone customers from the annoying interruptions.
  • The F.C.C. is again in the midst of a close look at the issue of Net Neutrality, the concept that all broadband Internet traffic should be treated equally by Internet service providers, who otherwise might be inclined to favor their own affiliate video and information companies in routing traffic through their systems. Three seminars take a look at the issue this week: On Tuesday, the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation hosts “Less Heat, More Light: Finding the Right Path Forward for Net Neutrality.” And on Wednesday, Georgetown’s Center for Business and Public Policy has “Title II, Net Neutrality and the Struggle for Balance in Broadband Regulation” while the Federalist Society hosts “The Layered Model of Adjudication and Enforcement of Net Neutrality with the FTC, DOJ and State AGs.”
  • The House Appropriations Committee has a full slate of mark-ups this week of the proposed the fiscal year 2018 budgets for various Cabinet departments. On Tuesday, a panel looks at the spending bills for Transportation and Housing & Urban Development, while on Wednesday the full committee considers Agriculture and Energy and relevant subcommittees pursue Interior and Homeland Security.
  • It’s a crisis that is affecting the medical, law enforcement and parenting communities in states across the nation: opioid abuse. State officials from Rhode Island, Virginia, Kentucky and Maryland will testify at a Wednesday hearing, “Combating the Opioid Crisis: Battle in the States,” before the House Energy and Commerce Committee. 
    Edward Wyatt is a senior vice president at Sphere Consulting LLC, which he joined in May 2015 following a 20-year career as a reporter and correspondent for The New York Times. He works with public affairs clients in the financial services, technology, and industrial sectors.

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