Talk of the Town

Date: January 8, 2019

The 116th Congress was sworn in on Thursday, January 3, ushering in the return of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and the Democrat majority in the U.S. House of Representatives. The Republicans maintain control of the Senate and the White House.

Congress’s first order of business will be to end the partial government shutdown that began at midnight, Dec. 21. At this point, no agreement is in sight.

Agencies affected by the shutdown and impacting suppliers include the Commerce and Transportation Departments. Steel and aluminum exclusion requests have not been processed since the shutdown began, leaving those waiting for exclusion approvals to wait yet longer. 

The new Congress will inherit other unfinished business from 2018, including automated vehicle legislation and proposals to limit the President’s authority to impose Section 232 tariffs. However, bills on these topics must be reintroduced for Congress to consider them.

Congress will also consider implementing legislation on the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) as well as legislation on data privacy and transportation infrastructure.

We expect that the House of Representatives will hold many oversight hearings about a variety of Trump Administration decisions, including the proposal from EPA and NHTSA setting fuel efficiency and emissions standards.

MEMA will continue to advocate on behalf of the industry on these and other topics.

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