Appropriators waiting

APPROPRIATORS WAITING: While the deal between Sen. Patty Murray and Rep. Paul Ryan set a top-line number for the budget, the work is just getting started. The House and Senate Appropriations Committees are expecting to work through the winter recess to meet the January 15 deadline. “Appropriators are aiming high. Both [Senate Appropriations Committee Chairwoman] Mikulski and House Appropriations Committee Chairman Harold Rogers have committed to drafting a dozen separate appropriations bills that will figure into omnibus legislation covering the remainder of the fiscal year. Appropriators are hopeful that they can pass the omnibus through both chambers before the current funding mechanism expires in January,” write Sarah Mimms and Michael Catalini: Sarah Mimms and Michael Catalini for National Journal: The Budget Deal That Stole Christmas
BUDGET DEAL ADVANCES: In a 67-33 vote, the Senate advanced the two-year budget deal with across-the-aisle support. All 55 Senate Democrats voted to advance the bill while 12 Republicans joined them. At this point, the bill is poised to pass and the final vote is slated for no later than Wednesday: Seung Min Kim for POLITICO: Senate poised to pass budget deal
NEXT FIGHT — THE DEBT CEILING: Instead of trying to find a solution to address a problem like Congress did with the budget deal, both sides of the aisle are preparing for a fight on the debt ceiling. Republican leadership is feeling a push from conservative groups to make big demands in exchange for increasing the debt ceiling. Meanwhile, the White House has again come out in sharp opposition to negotiating on the debt ceiling. The Treasury Department says the debt ceiling should be raised sometime by early March.
8 AND 22: David Hawkings looks back at the work of Congress in 2013 and sees very little accomplished. “Assuming the Senate does everything it’s expected to do this week, eight undeniably consequential things actually will have been completed at the Capitol this year. But another 22 relatively big legislative goals — some set by one party, but plenty claimed by both sides — will have been left at various points along the wayside,” he writes. Hawkings breaks down what was accomplished this year and what was not: David Hawkings for Roll Call: Lackluster Final Score for Congress This Year: 8 to 22
NOMINATION STRATEGY: Senate Republicans are likely to develop a new strategy for holding back nominees as President Barack Obama's appointees continue to be confirmed. Currently, Republicans can slow down the process and force the Senate to stay in Washington until December 24. Meanwhile, top appointees are continuing to be confirmed as Jeh Johnson was confirmed as the Secretary of Homeland Security yesterday, while Janet Yellen is expected to be confirmed this week as well: Peter Schroeder and Bernie Becker for The Hill: Senate GOP to decide filibuster strategy
NO LABELS RADIO: Last week, POLITICO‘s Mike Allen joined Gov. Jon Huntsman on No Labels Radio to discuss the budget deal struck by Sen. Patty Murray and Rep. Paul Ryan. Check out the full discussion here.
THE DAILY BREAK: What were the top Google searches this year? Find out here.
STAT OF THE DAY: The Gallup Economic Confidence Index climbed to -20 last week and is nearly back to the -15 measured in mid-September prior to the government shutdown: Alyssa Brown for Gallup: Americans Slowly Regaining Confidence in the Economy

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