Fox on the Hill

September 26, 2016Newsletters

2016 Election

Tonight will be the first head-to-head debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Going into the debate, the race appears to be a virtual dead heat and both candidates are counting on tonight to boost themselves into the lead. Both candidates will be closely watched, but the factors they will be judged by differ.

First will be how they react to their opponent. For Trump, the test will be to see if he is capable of remaining on message and controlling his contentious off-the-cuff rhetoric. Clinton, on the other hand, has a higher bar to clear, some believe, because she is an experienced one-on-one debater.

Trump is expected to be challenged about his comments about Muslims, Mexicans and the Trump Foundation’s charitable donations. Clinton is expected to be pressed on numerous alleged improprieties and missteps, such as her use of a private email server while serving as Secretary of State, her role during and after the attack in Benghazi, the alleged campaign coordination with the DNC during the Democratic Party Primary and her potential conflicts of interests with Clinton Foundation donors, including corporations and foreign interests.

Ultimately, the test for both candidates is whether they can win over the voters who currently lack confidence or enthusiasm when visualizing either candidate as president. For Clinton, a successful debate is convincing voters that her high-level government experience is more relevant than the political scandals associated with her and her husband, former President Bill Clinton. For Trump, this debate is about demonstrating that he can maintain a disciplined and presidential demeanor while under pressure.

Budget

As Congress gears up for its last week before leaving to campaign until Election Day, the two chambers have to agree to a Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund the government. Currently it stands that the CR would fund the government through December 9. House Freedom Caucus leaders, Reps. Mark Meadows (R-NC) and Jim Jordan (R-OH), are drafting an amendment to the CR, which would automatically fund the government for an additional 40 days after the December 9 deadline. The House Freedom Caucus has come out against an omnibus funding bill being passed after the election. 

While CRs by design generally do not include new policy or funding initiatives, it is expected that the bill will advance efforts to combat Zika. This will leave several initiatives supported by the White House on the table, including support for Flint, MI.

If you have questions about the topics above, please contact Teddy EynonPatrick Anderson or Ana Schwab.

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