Below is the federal policy team’s weekly preview, published each week when Congress is in session.


• Congress returns for its lame-duck session as Democrats look toward taking control of the House agenda in January. Democrats won a net gain of nearly 40 seats in last week’s midterm election, though the size of their majority will be narrower than Republicans’ current House majority.

• House and Senate Republicans will hold their leadership elections Wednesday. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., are likely to take the top spots in their respective conferences.

• President Donald Trump plans to spend the week in Washington, including holding a celebration of Diwali on Tuesday and visiting the Washington Marine Corps Barracks later in the week.


  • The House will be in session Tuesday through Friday. The light legislative agenda is focused on noncontroversial legislation. Newly elected House members are in Washington and will begin their orientation sessions.
  • Republicans on Wednesday will elect their conference leadership. Along with McCarthy as minority leader, Steve Scalise, R-La., is the favorite to be minority whip and Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., is the likely to win the No. 3 leadership position as conference chairwoman.
  • Democrats will hold their leadership elections Nov. 28 with Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., currently favored to win her second stint as speaker.
  • A full listing of House committee activity can be found here.


  • The Senate will be in session Tuesday through Friday. The floor agenda includes previously stalled legislation to reauthorize the Coast Guard.
  • The Senate will also resume consideration of Trump administration nominees, including Michelle Bowman to the Federal Reserve Board.
  • The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a rescheduled hearing on big banks and bankruptcy.
  • The current listing of Senate committee activity can be found here.


  • Trump returned from France, where the anniversary of the end of World War I was marked. He will spend the week in Washington, beginning with a Diwali celebration Tuesday.
  • Trump on Wednesday will meet with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Thursday he will visit the Marine Corps Barracks in Washington, and Friday he will lead the Medal of Freedom presentation.
  • Vice President Pence is in Asia this week for meetings with world leaders in Japan, Singapore, Australia and Papua New Guinea.