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Capitol Correspondence - 02.28.22

Congress Returns as Russian Invasion of Ukraine Takes Center Stage

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This week the U.S. House and Senate are returning to the Capitol after a week of recess. Congress’ main legislative priority is to pass an omnibus spending bill for Fiscal Year 2022 before the March 11 deadline when the current funding expires. However, the ongoing invasion of Ukraine by Russian forces will dramatically shift the focus of members of Congress into debates over NATO action, U.S. sanctions against Russia, and negotiations over additional aid to Ukraine. It is likely that Congress will approve additional aid, but it is unclear whether that aid will be added to the omnibus spending bill or move as a standalone piece of legislation.

In addition, the Senate will begin advancing the nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to become the next U.S. Supreme Court Justice. Senate Democrats have indicated they want to move quickly to confirm Judge Jackson and will spend the next several weeks committed to that goal. It is likely that Senators will not return to other legislation, such as the budget reconciliation legislation, until April.