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NCA’s Washington Weekly Update 2-28-22

Situational Awareness
The House and Senate reconvene this week. The House has a series of bills on the suspension calendar and the Senate will debate on a motion to proceed to consideration of the Women’s Health Protection Act of 2021, which would codify the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision. President Biden will deliver the State of the Union on Tuesday evening, March 1.

Government Funding Bills Due by March 11
Before leaving Washington for a weeklong recess period, Congress passed a continuing resolution to keep the government funded through March 11, buying time to work out funding bills for fiscal year 2022, which began on October 1, 2021. Negotiators appear close to an agreement but are hung up on policy differences. The conflict in Ukraine has also prompted a request from the administration for supplemental funding that could be added to the appropriations package. The Biden administration is requesting roughly $6.4 billion in new funding for Ukraine assistance. Of those funds, approximately $2.9 billion would provide humanitarian assistance to Ukraine, Poland and the Baltics, which will face increasing numbers of refugees fleeing the conflict. Just a week into fighting, nearly 400,000 Ukrainians have fled for safety.

SCOTUS Gets a Nominee
On Friday, President Biden announced his pick for an expected vacancy on the Supreme Court due to the impending retirement of Justice Stephen Breyer—U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson. Jackson previously served as a trial judge on the D.C. Circuit. Jackson received an undergraduate degree from Harvard and a Juris Doctorate from Harvard Law. If confirmed, which is highly likely, Biden will have made good on his promise to appoint the first African-American woman to the high court. As an aside, Judge Jackson is related through marriage to former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.).

State of the Union Address on Tuesday
The Biden Administration has warned for weeks that Russian troops are prepared to move into Ukraine imminently and President Biden is set to deliver the annual State of the Union address before a joint session of Congress on Tuesday evening. The president is expected to focus on the rapid developments in Ukraine, where the situation appears to be deteriorating by the hour. In addition to events in Ukraine, the president is likely to tout job growth since the start of his administration and investments in infrastructure. He is also expected to address growing concerns about inflation that have undermined his economic message for months and contributed greatly to falling approval ratings that have hovered at or below 40% for months. Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds (R) will deliver the Republican response and is expected to capitalize on voters’ frustration about inflation and dissatisfaction with the President’s handling of that and other domestic issues such as crime, immigration and border security. Progressive lawmaker Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) will deliver a response as well.

New ClubPAC Insider Out This Week
The monthly ClubPAC Insider is scheduled to come out this week and will be touching on the latest developments in redistricting as well as updates on 10 key Senate races up in 2022. ClubPAC Insider is a monthly update on elections and NCA’s political engagement that is available to all NCA members who have signed a prior authorization form. If you have not yet signed the form, you can find it on NCA’s website and sign it electronically.

Fate of Ukraine in Spotlight
On the week of the State of the Union address from President Biden, Washington is normally consumed with chatter about what is in and what is out of the speech before the annual joint session of Congress, but most of official D.C. is focused on the hour-by-hour developments in Ukraine this year. Russia’s invasion of its neighbor and one-time satellite Ukraine has appropriately leapt to the top of the issue matrix in Washington as North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) nations rally to aid the nation of 43 million through defense weaponry and sanctions against Russia, its President Vladimir Putin and the oligarchs behind him. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has joined his troops and volunteers defending the country’s capital, Kyiv, from Russian forces. Zelensky has forbidden Ukrainian males 18-60 years of age from leaving the country. So far, roughly 350,000-400,000 Ukrainians have fled the country to neighboring nations. Putin has placed the country’s nuclear arsenal on high alert as frustration builds over an offensive that expected to reach Kyiv within 73 hours has bogged down and western nations align against him. The latest round of sanctions are aimed at crippling the Russian Central Bank, and western business leaders have joined in taking action to further isolate the Russian leadership. Ukrainians have demonstrated a commitment to defending their fledgling democracy wrested away from Russian influence during the Orange Revolution in 2014. When offered safe passage to establish a government in exile, President Zelensky is reported to have said, “I need ammunition, not a ride.”

Early Bird Pricing for 2022 National Club Conference Ends Friday
Register to the 2022 National Club Conference, May 15-17 in Charleston, S.C., by March 4 to join me and your colleagues for the industry’s most exciting conference at discounted early bird rates. #ClubConf22 will feature a variety of outstanding speakers, thought leaders and solution providers offering insight on the business issues and lifestyle topics that affect you and your property every day. Learn more and register here.