DC Digest – September 15, 2014

In Today’s Issue:

  • This Week in Washington
  • DC Briefing: NC in the Global Economy
  • Congress Hopes to Approve Short-Term FY15 CR This Week
  • Dukies on the Move
  • DIW/PAGR Election Discussion Series Kicks off Thursday
  • Jentleson to Speak on Isolationism at Wilson Center


Capitol Hill: Congress will likely adjourn until after the November elections at week’s end, but first they must pass a measure funding the federal government beyond Oct. 1. The Administration hopes this measure will include the president’s request for aid to Syrian rebels and authority to pursue military action, but more details are expected Monday evening, when the House Rules Committee will meet.

In Committees: A handful of top administration officials are headed to Capitol Hill this week to explain—and defend—the plan to take on ISIS. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel; Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; and Secretary of State John Kerry will be testifying on the need to address the threat posed by ISIS overseas. On the domestic front, FBI Director James Comey and Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson will appear before the House Homeland Security Committee Wednesday to discuss threats to the homeland.

Joint Session: On Thursday, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is expected to deliver a speech to a joint session of Congress. The speech comes as the White House, along with the European Union, released a new set of financial, energy, and defense sanctions against Russia.

White House: The President will travel to Atlanta to visit the headquarters of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where he will receive a briefing on the outbreak of the Ebola virus in West Africa. He will then continue on to Tampa, FL, to  visit U.S. Central Command at the MacDill Air Force Base. He will return to Washington, DC on Thursday to host the Ukranian President.

Read More:
Week ahead: Obama officials sell ISIS policy (The Hill)
Obama will host Poroshenko in Washington on Sept. 18 (KyivPost)

Staff from North Carolina Congressional offices, representatives from Governor Pat McCrory’s Washington office, and individuals representing North Carolina-focused businesses gathered in a Capitol Hill meeting room on Friday morning to learn more about the North Carolina in the Global Economy (NCGE) project, a Duke-created website that provides information and insight into North Carolina’s traditional and emerging industries.

Dr. Gary Gereffi, professor of sociology and director of the Center on Globalization, Governance, and Competitiveness at Duke, heads up the project and led Friday’s presentation.

Read More:
DC Briefing: NC in the Global Economy (governmentrelations.duke.edu)

The House is expected to consider the FY15 continuing resolution (CR) on Tuesday, September 16. The stopgap funding measure had been scheduled for consideration last week, but House leaders pulled the CR from the floor agenda in order to decide whether to include in the package President Obama’s request for authorization and funding to fight the Islamic State.

The CR is needed because Congress has failed to approve any of the FY15 appropriations bills, and current funding runs out when the new fiscal year begins on October 1. The package will last through December 11, to allow for approval of a longer-term package during the post-election, lame duck session and will fund most federal programs at their FY14 levels.


Nia-Malika Henderson (T ’96),  currently a political reporter at the Washington Post, is joining The Fix political team, Post editors announced on Friday. Paul Teller (T ’93) has been named chief of staff for Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX).  Teller has served as Senator Cruz’s deputy chief of staff since January of 2014.

Duke in Washington, along with Duke University’s Office of Public Affairs and Government Relations and the Forum for Scholars and Publics, will host a seven-part weekly discussion series that will take an in-depth look at issues central to the midterm elections.

Each week will address a new topic, from health care to foreign relations, and the discussions will be led concurrently by faculty and experts from campus and from the nation’s capital.  The series begins Thursday, September 18, at 4:00pm at the Duke in Washington conference room, 1201 New York Ave, NW, Suite 1110. The first session is “Setting the Stage: Midterm Overview.”

Read More:
For more information, a full calendar and to register click here.

Bruce Jentleson, professor of Public Policy and Political Science, will speak at The Wilson Center on September 15 on “American Isolationism: Is it a Myth or a Reality,” a panel discussion on the release of The Chicago Council’s 40th anniversary survey of Americans on foreign policy issues. Jentleson will join Jane Harman, president and CEO of the Wilson Center, and Ambassador Ivo Daalder, president of The Chicago Council on Global Affairs and former US Permanent Representative to NATO, in discussing the survey results.

Read More:
More info and webcast – American Isolationism: Myth or Reality (Chicagocouncil.org)