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State of the Union speech expected to touch on military, budget issues

President Joe Biden is scheduled to deliver his annual State of the Union address to Congress on March 7, with several military-connected issues expected to be among his talking points.

Although policies directly impacting American troops or their families are not expected to be featured in the national speech, Biden is expected to talk about continued U.S. military support for Ukraine in their war against Russia and U.S. assistance to Israel in their ongoing military operations in Gaza.

He is also expected to broach Congress’ ongoing budget impasse. Federal agencies — including the Defense Department — have been operating on short-term budget extensions for five months because of political fights over spending levels.

White House budget planners are expected to unveil their plans for the fiscal 2025 federal budget on March 11, but lawmakers are unlikely to have the fiscal 2024 year-long spending plan finalized before then. Last week, House and Senate members approved another short-term budget extension, with promises of finishing a full budget plan by the end of March.

Wednesday, March 6

Senate Homeland Security — 9:30 a.m. — 342 Dirksen
Business meeting
Lawmakers will discuss pending legislation, including a bill to require executive branch employees to report certain royalties.

House Small Business — 10 a.m. — 2360 Rayburn
Small Business Administration
Hearing to evaluate the Government Accountability Office’s recommendations for reducing mismanagement at SBA.

House and Senate Veterans’ Affairs — 10 a.m. — G50 Dirksen
Representatives from the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Paralyzed Veterans of America, AMVETS, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America and others will testify on their policy priorities for the upcoming year.

Senate Foreign Relations — 10 a.m. — 419 Dirksen
Global Food Security
Officials from the U.S. Agency for International Development will testify on global food security issues.

House Transportation — 10 a.m. — 2167 Rayburn
Coast Guard Manpower Shortages
Coast Guard officials will testify on personnel shortages and their impact on service missions.

House Armed Services — 3:30 p.m. — 2118 Rayburn
Army Aviation Rebalancing
Service officials will testify on Army aviation modernization plans.

Thursday, March 7

Senate Armed Services — 9:30 a.m. — 216 Hart
Central Command and Africa Command
Officials from U.S. Central Command and Africa Command will testify on current operations and budget needs for fiscal 2025.

House and Senate Veterans’ Affairs — 10 a.m. — G50 Dirksen
Disabled American Veterans
Representatives from the Disabled American Veterans will testify on their policy priorities for the upcoming year.

House Judiciary — 10 a.m. — 2141 Rayburn
Weaponization of the Federal Government
Lawmakers will discuss concerns about misuse and abuse of government agencies.

House Foreign Affairs — 10 a.m. — 2172 Rayburn
Blinken Contempt of Congress
The committee will consider a resolution holding Secretary of State Antony Blinken in contempt for failing to provide certain documents related to the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Senate Foreign Relations — 10:30 a.m. — 419 Dirksen
The committee will consider several pending nominations, including Robert William Forden to be ambassador to Cambodia.

House Foreign Affairs — 2 p.m. — 2200 Rayburn
Antisemitism in Latin America
State Department officials will testify on issues of discrimination and antisemitism in Latin American countries.

House Armed Services — 2:30 p.m. — 2118 Rayburn
COVID-19 tracking
Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs Dr. Lester Martinez–Lopez will testify on continued efforts to monitor COVID-19 in the ranks.

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