Congress Back for Lame Duck Session Nov. 15

Nov. 12, 2010 — The 111th Congress will come back to Washington, D.C. on November 15 for a lame duck session that is expected to last until early December.

The main issue on Congress' agenda for the lame duck is the debate over taxes and budget issues. A portion of the President George W. Bush-era tax cuts are set to expire at the end of the year and there has been significant debate about whether they should expire or if Congress will act on some of President Obama's tax recommendations.

Regarding financial services, the House Financial Services Committee has two hearings scheduled during the lame duck session. On November 18, the Committee scheduled a hearing titled "Robo-Signing, Chain of Title, Loss Mitigation and Other Issues in Mortgage Servicing," and prior to that on November 16, the Committee will hold a hearing on the global financial crisis and financial reforms in Nigeria.

The Senate Banking Committee will also hold a hearing on mortgage and foreclosure issues related to the recent discovery of "robo-signing" of foreclosure documents. That hearing is scheduled for November 16. In addition, the Senate Banking Committee will consider the nomination of Dr. Peter A. Diamond to be a Member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. These hearings will be the last for Chairman Chris Dodd (D-CT), who will retire at the end of the year.

During the lame duck session, announcements will be made regarding leadership positions for the 112th Congress. The House, which will be Republican-controlled come January, is expected to be led by Rep. John Boehner (R-OH). Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) will likely remain Majority Leader in the Senate. Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA) is challenging Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-AL) for the chairmanship of the House Financial Services Committee. Sen. Tim Johnson (D-SD) will follow Chris Dodd (D-CT) as chairman of the Senate Banking Committee when he retires later this year.

NASCUS will provide updates from the lame duck session as news develops.