What’s new in Blotter news:
Science Policy Analyst André Porter attended the National Institute of Health’s Council of Councils meeting last week. Read his summary of the meeting below:
The U.S. Senate appropriations committee voted overwhelmingly to pass a funding bill by the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee. The bill includes a $2 billion increase for the National Institutes of Health, with money earmarked for Alzheimer’s research, the BRAIN initiative, the precision medicine program, and treatment for antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
Senate Republicans are attempting to repeal the Affordable Care Act once again. This latest effort, spearheaded by Sens. Bill Cassidy, R-La., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., would give block grants to states for their health care needs. The effort comes weeks before reconciliation, the parliamentary procedure allowing a bill to be passed by simple majority, expires. House Freedom Caucus chair Mark Meadows, R-N.C., along with the White House, are supporting these efforts. The bill is set to be introduced next Monday.
President Donald Trump met with Democratic leaders to pass a short-term continuing resolution to fund the government and raise the debt ceiling until December. This deal is tied with funding to support rebuilding efforts after the devastation of Hurricane Harvey. Trump also dropped his demands for the inclusion of border wall funding in the continuing resolution. While congressional Republicans initially were blindsided by the deal, GOP leaders later released statements of support. The deal will push back fears of American debt default and government shutdown until December.
Trump released a statement to end former President Barack Obama’s program to prevent deportation of undocumented individuals who arrived illegally to the United States as children. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, protects some 800,000 young adults from being deported. Trump set a six-month window to encourage Congress to pass legislation on behalf of DACA-protected individuals. Democrats, some Republicans, businesses and organizations have condemned the move. Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California urged Trump to assure those protected under DACA that they would not be deported in this six-month window, and he did so on Twitter.
Trump moves to end DACA and calls on Congress to act (New York Times)