Congress is open for business, but for how long? The Capitol Complex and Library of Congress are not allowing visitors through April 1st, although there are some loopholes for business visitors. The House put out telework guidance for offices — but no uniform telework requirement — and went into its district work period; the Senate cancelled its district work period to consider the emergency Coronavirus funding bill passed by the House, which it will take up only after a surveillance bill. Meanwhile, we urged both chambers to allow remote voting (editorial, letter); so did Norm Ornstein; so did Rep. Katie Porter; and we put out a statement on remote voting in federal and state legislatures.
The House passed a resolution implementing recommendations from the Fix Congress committee. This is the first time in recent history a modernization committee has issued recommendations at all, let alone had the bipartisan recommendations be adopted.
A warrantless surveillance program is on deck for Senate consideration, after being rammed through the House by leadership and circumventing the committee process. It’s fate (like its policies) are murky at best.
Continuity of Congress Briefing. We have tentatively scheduled an online briefing for tomorrow, Tuesday, March 17, at 11:30 AM ET on Continuity of Congress, which will focus on remote voting and the issues at play. RSVP here so we can send you a link to the online briefing.