The Week Ahead: Holiday crunch time

Both chambers of Congress will be trying to wrap up the year’s business before breaking for the holidays.

The biggest item on the agenda — funding the government.

The current funding measure expires Dec. 16. Appropriators will spend the week working on an omnibus with a tentative plan to release a package on Dec. 12 for a Dec. 15 vote.

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Meanwhile, House Republicans will try to move forward on a deal to extend the expiring payroll tax cut and could hold a vote in the lower chamber this week.

President Obama will be in Osawatomie, Kan., on Wednesday — the same day that several Republican presidential candidates will be in Washington for a Republican Jewish Coalition forum.

Monday, Dec. 5

Vice President Biden is in Greece and will meet with President Karolos Papoulias.

Newt Gingrich will meet with Donald Trump at Trump Tower in New York City.

Tuesday, Dec. 6

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner heads to Europe for a three-day trip where he’ll meet with several leading economic officials from Germany, France and Italy, including French President Nicolas Sarkozy, about the debt crisis.

The Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee holds a hearing on the implementation of the Wall Street Reform Act. Several big names will be testifying, including Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin, Federal Reserve member Daniel Tarullo, Securities and Exchange Commission Chairwoman Mary Schapiro, Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman Gary Gensler, Acting Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Chairman Martin Gruenberg and acting Comptroller of the Currency John Walsh. The hearing begins at 10 a.m. in 538 Dirksen.

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) lights the 2011 Capitol Christmas Tree at 5 p.m. on the West Lawn of the Capitol.

Wednesday, Dec. 7

President Obama will travel to Osawatomie, Kan., to talk about the economy and how it is a make-or-break moment for the middle class. In announcing the president's trip, the White House noted: "Just over one hundred years ago, President Teddy Roosevelt came to Osawatomie, Kansas and called for a New Nationalism, where everyone gets a fair chance, a square deal, and an equal opportunity to succeed."

All of the Republican presidential candidates — except for Ron Paul— will be speaking at the Republican Jewish Coalition 2012 Republican Presidential Candidates Forum in Washington, D.C.

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Virginia Senate candidates Tim Kaine (D) and George Allen (R) meet for a debate in Richmond at 1 p.m.

Thursday, Dec. 8

Obama meets with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper at the White House.

Former Gov. Jon Corzine (D-N.J.) has been subpoenaed to testify in front of the House Agriculture Committee on the MF Global bankruptcy. The hearing begins at 9:30 a.m. in 1300 Longworth.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce hosts its annual holiday reception Thursday evening. The event is invitation only.

Friday, Dec. 9

The United Services Automobile Association hosts a private gala celebration ahead of Saturday’s Army-Navy football game, which takes place at FedEx Field.

— Peter Schroeder contributed