WASHINGTON-As lawmakers scurried out of town October 18 for last minute campaigning in their individual districts, they passed a continuing resolution to last through November 22, quelling the burning question inside the beltway of whether or not a lame duck session would occur. At this point the House is expected to reconvene November 11, while the Senate will likely wait until November 18. According to NAFCU Senior Lobbyist Murray Chanow, the primary focus of lawmakers after the November 5 elections will be the 11 of 13 unfinished appropriations bills. However, three other issues could receive consideration in the post-election period, including bankruptcy reform (H.R. 333). CUNA and NAFCU have indicated they will continue their strong grassroots and lobbying efforts through the lame duck session. The other two issues that could get the attention of the Congress in the lame duck session are Homeland Security and terrorism insurance. Obviously, this does not bode well for the Financial Services Regulatory Relief Act (H.R. 3951), which credit unions have strongly supported but did not expect to become law during the 107th Congress anyway. In a more positive light for credit unions, CUNA has received recognition from the Wisconsin lawmaker who is the chairman of both the House Judiciary Committee and the bankruptcy reform conference committee. CUNA President and CEO Dan Mica received a letter from his former colleague, House Judiciary Chairman Jim Sensenbrenner, last week applauding CUNA’s and credit unions’ efforts in the legislative process for the bankruptcy reform bill (H.R. 333). The chairman vowed to press on to see the bill become law before the close of the 107th Congress. “I don’t need to tell you that CUNA and the credit unions have been one of the most, if not the most, influential forces in getting the bill to the forefront of the Congressional agenda,” Sensenbrenner wrote. “I am personally aware that several of my colleagues that may have been initially skeptical about supporting this important legislation were won over by the stories they heard from their credit unions.” He concluded, “I applaud CUNA for the critical role it has played in this effort and will do all I can to make sure these efforts come to a successful conclusion.” [email protected]

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