Political Update with Jeff Olson
Date Posted: November 13, 2012
By Jeff Olson, VP of Advocacy and Awareness
North Dakota News:
The Republican Majority met in Bismarck last night to elect their leadership for the upcoming legislative session. Republican leadership will stay largely the same as it was two years ago; the only changes coming in the House speaker and assistant Senate Majority.
The contest came from three House members that were seeking the House speaker position, which eventually went to Rep. Bill Devlin, Finely (D-23). The other two vying for the position was Rep. Larry Bellew, Minot (D-38), and Mark Dosch, Bismarck, (D-32). The Hose leadership is unchanged with Al Carlson, Fargo (D-41) and Don Vigesaa, Cooperstown, (D-23) elected as Majority leaders as Mike Nathe, Bismarck (D-30) will remain as GOP Caucus Chair.
North Dakota Senate members also met and re-elected Senator Rich Wardner, Dickinson (D-36) as the Majority leader and choose Senator Jerry Klein, Fessenden (D-14) as the Assistant Majority Leaders. Other than the special session, this will be Wardner’s first full session as the Majority leader. (Wardner replaced Bob Stenehjem in the summer of 2011.) The Assistant Majority position became vacant when Randy Christman won the open Public Service Commission seat last week. The GOP Senate Caucus chair seat went to Senator David Hogue, Minot (D-38).
The North Dakota Democratic NPL party plans to meet on December 2 to elect their leadership for the upcoming session.
South Dakota News:
Tim Dougherty, SD Lead Lobbyist reports that the Senate Republican caucus met in Pierre on Monday and elected its leadership team for the next two years. Russell Olson was reelected for another term as the senate majority leader. Olson’s election was not contested. Corey Brown was elected as the new president pro tempore of the senate. He replaces outgoing Senator Bob Gray, who was term-limited. Brown had served as the assistant majority leader. Tim Rave was elected as the assistant majority leader. Senators Ryan Maher, Larry Rhoden, and Dan Lederman were elected as whips
The South Dakota Democratic caucuses in both houses will meet Friday night to choose their leaders. The House Republican caucus will reportedly meet on Saturday.
In Washington: Post Election Congress Back to Work - Busy week planned.
The House and the Senate are back in Washington this week to open the first week of the post-election session. Both chambers are expected to be in town until Friday, and then return the week of November 26th, post Thanksgiving. The target adjournment date is December 14, but don’t be surprised if that slips into the following week or even further as Congress considers how to address the fiscal cliff and other end of year measures.
Today the House will convene and consider bills under suspension of the rules. On Wednesday, the House will consider additional bills under suspension of the rules. Later in the week, the House will consider H.R. 6156, the Russia and Moldova Jackson-Vanik Repeal Act of 2012.
The Senate also convenes today to resume consideration of S.3525, the "Sportsmen Act of 2012." At 5:30 p.m. the Senate will conduct a roll call vote on the motion to proceed to S.3525. The Senate may also consider the “Cybersecurity Act of 2012” (S. 3414).
Behind the scenes, caucus meetings and leadership elections will be held, although the House Democrats have postponed their elections to the week of November 26th.
On Wednesday, the Senate Banking Committee will hold a hearing titled, "Oversight of Basel III: Impact of Proposed Capital Rules." Slated to testify are Michael Gibson, director of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors Division of Banking Supervision and Regulation; John Lyons, chief national bank examiner in the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency; and George French, deputy director of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Policy, Division of Risk Management Supervision.
On Thursday, the Senate Select Committee on Aging will hold a hearing on "America's Invisible Epidemic: Preventing Elder Financial Abuse." Slated to testify are Kay Brown, director of education, workforce and income security at the Government Accountability Office; Hubert "Skip" Humphrey III, assistant director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Office of Older Americans and member of the Elder Justice Coordinating Council, Washington, D.C.; Paul Smocer, president, BITS, Financial Services Roundtable, Washington, D.C.; Paul Greenwood, deputy district attorney, Head of Elder Abuse Unit, Family Protection Division, San Diego, Calif.