Week Ahead: Florida GOP votes, first lady hits the campaign trail

Florida holds its presidential primary, the Senate votes on legislation to make insider trading by lawmakers illegal and first lady Michelle Obama hits the campaign trail this week.

Mitt Romney is looking to trounce Newt Gingrich in the Sunshine State. The former Massachusetts governor holds a double-digit lead in the polls but the former Speaker is vowing to stay in the fight no matter the outcome Tuesday.

Nevada is the next voting state — its caucuses are on Saturday — and Romney is expected to win there. He carried the state in the 2008 nomination contest.

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On Monday, the Senate is scheduled to hold a procedural vote on the STOCK Act, which would ban insider trading by lawmakers. The issue gained steam after CBS’s “60 Minutes” aired a story about it. In his State of the Union address, Obama urged lawmakers to pass the bill, saying he would sign it “tomorrow.”

And Michelle Obama will be in California on Tuesday and Wednesday, where she’ll do some fundraising and stop by “The Tonight Show” and “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.”

On Friday, the Labor Department releases the January jobs report.


Monday, Jan. 30

President Obama will meet with President Mikheil Saakashvili of Georgia at the White House.

Michelle Obama will join Labor Secretary Hilda Solis to announce new proposed rules to help caregivers of wounded, ill and injured service members and veterans. The event begins at 11:15 a.m. at the Labor Department.

Vice President Biden will deliver remarks at the Conference of Chief Justices in Wilmington, Del. Later, in the day he will meet with Saakashvili.

The Senate will hold a procedural vote on the STOCK Act, which bars insider trading by lawmakers.


Tuesday, Jan. 31

Florida holds its primary. Polls close at 8 p.m. ET.

Michelle Obama will be in Los Angeles for a Democratic National Committee fundraiser and will also appear on the “Tonight Show with Jay Leno.”

Biden will be in Fort Worth and DeKalb, Texas, for fundraisers.

Consumer Finance Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray testifies before the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee at 10 a.m. in 538 Dirksen.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano speaks at a National Press Club luncheon at 1 p.m.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) will release its annual long-term economic and deficit outlook.


Wednesday, Feb. 1

President Obama will head to Northern Virginia to deliver remarks on the economy.

Michelle Obama will be in Inglewood, Calif., in the morning to promote her healthy eating initiative, she’ll appear on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” in the afternoon and then attend another DNC fundraiser.

Vice President Biden will be in Grand Rapids, Mich.

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will hold a hearing to investigate Obama’s recess appointments. It begins at 9:30 a.m. in 2154 Rayburn.

The lawmakers tasked with reaching an agreement on extending the payroll tax break through 2012 will meet for the second time.

CBO Director Douglas Elmendorf testifies before the House Budget Committee at 10 a.m. in 210 Cannon.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) will give the keynote address at the Susan B. Anthony List’s “Campaign for Life Gala” at 6:30 p.m. at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel.


Thursday, Feb. 2

President Obama addresses the National Prayer Breakfast.

Vice President Biden will be at the National Prayer Breakfast and will also deliver remarks at the Communications Workers of America Legislative Conference.

Attorney General Eric Holder will testify before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on the “Fast and the Furious” program. The hearing begins at 9 a.m. in 2154 Rayburn.

Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke testifies before the House Budget Committee at 10 a.m. on the state on the economy. The hearing will be held in 210 Cannon.

Elmendorf testifies before the Senate Budget Committee at 10 a.m. in 608 Dirksen.


Friday, Feb. 3

The Labor Department releases the January jobs report.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton leaves on a two-day trip to Germany and Bulgaria.


— Peter Schroeder contributed.