OVERNIGHT MONEY: Three-week warning


On yet another planet...: Appropriators continued acting as if all is normal, and are proceeding with the 2012 spending bill process in the absence of any agreement on a top line spending number.

After a bruising Tuesday battle over spending for the Environmental Protection Agency and Interior department as well as the dozens of environmental riders in the bill that Democrats say are gifts to polluters, House Appropriations will take up bills for Commerce, Justice and the legislative branch on Wednesday.

The legislative branch bill cuts House office budgets, which has led to some grumbling from the back benches. The Commerce, Justice and Science bill is most controversial for eliminating the local law enforcement COPS program, and for cutting the National Science Foundation budgets.


What was that about entitlements?: The chief actuaries for both Medicare and Social Security are set to discuss the two programs’ futures with the House Budget Committee tomorrow. In perhaps another sign of the importance some Democrats are placing on protecting the programs from cuts, the House Ways and Means Committee sent out a prehearing briefing memo to reporters on Tuesday. 

Nope, not an Apple product: Kathleen SebeliusKathleen SebeliusFormer HHS secretary Sebelius joins marijuana industry group More than 200 Obama officials sign letter supporting Biden's stimulus plan Biden seeks to use the bully pulpit he has on COVID-19 MORE, the Health and Human Services secretary, is set for her second consecutive day of House testimony on the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), after telling Budget on Tuesday that the controversial board won't be an issue if lawmakers have the will to tackle Medicare.

Joining Sebelius at a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee on Wednesday will be a quartet of lawmakers — Sen. John CornynJohn CornynSenate coronavirus bill delayed until Thursday Democrats cut deals to bolster support for relief bill Bottom line MORE (R-Texas) and Reps. George Miller (R-Calif.), Phil Roe (R-Tenn.) and Allyson Schwartz (D-Pa.). All of the House members besides Miller support repealing IPAB.

Seven decades in the making…: In their first joint hearing on taxes since before World War II, the Senate Finance and House Ways and Means committees are set to examine debt and equity and how both the individual and corporate tax codes treat the two differently. 

The hearing comes just after tax reform briefly took center stage in the deficit talks, as potentially part of the grandest bargain sought by Obama and Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerBoehner book jacket teases slams against Cruz, Trump Cruz hits back at Boehner for telling him to 'go f--- yourself' John Boehner tells Cruz to 'go f--- yourself' in unscripted audiobook asides: report MORE (R-Ohio). On Tuesday, Sen. Max BaucusMax Sieben BaucusBottom line Bottom line Bottom line MORE (D-Mont.), the Finance chairman, told reporters he was still hopeful a tax overhaul would come sooner rather than later. 

Grilled, not fried: Ben Bernanke, the Federal Reserve chairman, will kick off his Capitol Hill tour tomorrow, when he delivers the central bank’s semiannual monetary policy report to the House Financial Services Committee. 

And, oh, what a time to deliver it: On the heels of disappointing jobs data and the recent end of QE2, not to mention the ongoing fight over the debt limit – all of which could mean a long morning for Bernanke. The Fed also downgraded its economic expectations after its June meeting, and minutes released today show that the Fed is divided on whether it should consider more stimulus to boost the economy. 

Mortgage making: A House Financial Services subcommittee will discuss mortgage origination issues tomorrow, as policymakers continue to search for ways to get the housing market chugging again. Officials from the Federal Reserve, Treasury Department, Government Accountability Office, as well as a slew of housing experts will be on hand to offer their take to lawmakers.

Regulation reform: The House Small Business Committee will mark up a pair of bills intended to reduce the regulatory burden for (you guessed it) small businesses tomorrow.

The briefing room: A trio of conservative firebrands — Rep. Michele BachmannMichele Marie BachmannEvangelicals shouldn't be defending Trump in tiff over editorial Mellman: The 'lane theory' is the wrong lane to be in White House backs Stephen Miller amid white nationalist allegations MORE (R-Minn.), Steve King (R-Iowa) and Louie GohmertLouis (Louie) Buller GohmertNIH director: Mask politicalization may have cost 'tens of thousands' of lives in US Democrats should make the 'Bee-Gees' the face of the Republican Party GOP lawmakers call for Pelosi to be fined over new screenings MORE (R-Texas) — are scheduled to hold a Wednesday news conference on newly introduced legislation that would ensure that service members get paid no matter what happens with the debt ceiling.

Earlier this year, the three lawmakers were among the group trying to ensure the military also got their paychecks in case of an (eventually averted) government shutdown. 

Economic indicators:

-- The Labor Department is set to circulate June indices for exports and imports. 

-- Mortgage Bankers Association is slated to release their weekly loan applications numbers. 


Not in Greece anymore: The size of Italy’s economy – seventh largest in the world – could make it difficult to bail out, should it come to that, The Washington Post reports. 

Staffing the Fund: Christine Lagarde, the new managing director of the International Monetary Fund, is staffing up with officials from both China and the U.S., the IMF announced Tuesday.

In a statement, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner praised the selection of David Lipton as first deputy managing director, saying the current White House economic official will bring “creativity and drive” to the Fund.

Min Zhu, meanwhile, will inhabit a newly created fourth deputy managing director slot – a sign, The New York Times said, that the IMF had “bowed to the future.”

You can ditch the ark: The House passed a measure reforming the National Flood Insurance Program on Tuesday evening, in what our Floor Action blog calls a rare moment of bipartisanship. The bill aims to help the program reduce its current debt. 


On the Money’s Tuesday:

-- Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanBoehner book jacket teases slams against Cruz, Trump CPAC, all-in for Trump, is not what it used to be Cruz hires Trump campaign press aide as communications director MORE takes the president to task

-- CFPB discusses how it will oversee large banks. 

-- At House Appropriations, the Grand Canyon is more than a metaphor for partisan differences.

-- Jim Webb does not want tax increases on regular income. 

-- Carl LevinCarl Milton LevinHow President Biden can hit a home run McConnell and Schumer need to make the most of this moment Progressives offer mixed messages on key Biden economic aide MORE goes to bat, once more, against tax havens.

-- James InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofeOvernight Defense: Tim Kaine moves to claw back war powers authority | Study on sexual harassment and assault in the military Commissioners tasked with scrubbing Confederate base names sworn-in at first meeting Biden seeks to walk fine line with Syria strike MORE keeps holding on to Commerce nominee. 

-- Barbara BoxerBarbara Levy BoxerTrump administration halting imports of cotton, tomatoes from Uighur region of China Biden inaugural committee to refund former senator's donation due to foreign agent status Questions and answers about the Electoral College challenges MORE, Johnny IsaksonJohnny IsaksonLoeffler leaves door open to 2022 rematch against Warnock Perdue on potential 2022 run: GOP must regain the Senate Bottom line MORE team up on a Fannie, Freddie measure.

-- Wall Streeters not so sanguine about the economy.

-- IRS reaches out to tax preparers gone wrong.

-- Bernie SandersBernie SandersOn The Money: Democrats deals to bolster support for relief bill | Biden tries to keep Democrats together | Retailers fear a return of the mask wars Democrats cut deals to bolster support for relief bill Hillicon Valley: High alert as new QAnon date approaches Thursday | Biden signals another reversal from Trump with national security guidance | Parler files a new case MORE tells the president not to stray on Social Security.

-- And the trade deficit widens

Feedback, tips, etc. to bbecker@thehill.com

Update: Rep. George Miller, not Rep. Gary Miller, will be testifying about IPAB on Wednesday.