Pentagon & Congress

This week in Congress: Senate impeachment trial coming soon

The congressional armed services committees will hold their first hearings of 2020 this week, but those events are likely to be overshadowed by the House’s delivery of articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump.

On Friday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that procedural move will take place in the next few days, initiating a Senate trial into the charges that the president withheld foreign aid in an attempt to force a political favor from Ukrainian officials.

The impeachment trial is likely to disrupt a significant amount of regular Senate work for weeks, although defense leaders may not feel a significant impact. Much of the planned Senate Armed Services Committee work is scheduled for after the delivery of the president’s fiscal 2021 budget request in early February.

Meanwhile, House officials will carry on with regular committee and legislative work as the Senate trial proceeds. The House Veterans’ Affairs Committee has already held one hearing this year, and has a second set for Tuesday. The House Armed Services Committee will discuss national security strategy towards China in its first meeting of the year on Wednesday.

Tuesday, Jan. 14

House Veterans' Affairs — 10 a.m. — Visitors Center H210
Veteran Housing Programs
Housing experts will testify on current programs to assist homeless veterans.

House Foreign Affairs — 10 a.m. — 2172 Rayburn
Iran
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will testify before the committee on current administration actions towards Iran.

Wednesday, Jan. 15

House Homeland Security — 10 a.m. — 310 Cannon
Iran
Committee members will examine current administration actions towards Iran.

House Armed Services — 10 a.m. — 2118 Rayburn
China
Outside experts, including former Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michele Flournoy, will testify on strategic threats posed by China.

House Foreign Affairs — 10 a.m. — 2172 Rayburn
Afghanistan
The special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction will testify on waste and inefficiency in U.S. projects to help rebuild that country.

House Foreign Affairs — 2 p.m. — 2172 Rayburn
Mexico
Outside experts will testify on local and international security issues in Mexico.

Thursday, Jan. 16

Senate Armed Services — 9:30 a.m. — G-50 Dirksen
Nominations
The committee will consider the nominations of James McPherson to be under secretary of the Army and Charles Williams to be assistant secretary of the Navy for installations.

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