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This Week in Washington, Georgia Edition - November 13, 2020

November 13, 2020

In Washington Whispers, Patrick Robertson observes that President Trump has the right to explore all of his legal options, but in the meantime it is important to watch and think about the ideas and agenda of the Biden Team as they address transition of the administration, filling cabinet positions, continuing COVID response, prioritizing infrastructure, and if – or how – to reform the Senate. We cover the upcoming lame duck and how both the Senate and the House look after last week’s elections, as well as an overview of Georgia’s January 5th runoff elections, in Heard on the Hill. Erik Paulsen has written a fascinating – albeit frightening – article about future ‘super-bugs’. Jesse Weathington provides an update on the latest in Georgia with his Gold Dome Report. As always, make sure to check out the Infographs for an in-depth look at current hot topics.

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This Week in Washington, Georgia Edition - October 30, 2020

October 30, 2020

Well, we decided to do one more issue of This Week in Washington as a clean-up-and-button-down issue before next week’s elections. In Heard on the Hill, we summarize ‘No Judge Left Behind’ and the successful confirmation of Justice Barrett. We also look at the reason why the COVID stimulus bill couldn’t happen before the election, what’s behind all the optimism about a COVID vaccine, the Congressional Review Act and how it could be used next year, and the outlook for a continued Republican Senate majority from the perspective of Republican strategists. Al Jackson reports on prospects for defense appropriations over the next four years under a Trump or Biden Administration, and with a Republican or Democratic Majority in the Senate. Total Spectrum Spotlight features part two of our interview with Neil Newhouse, co-founder of Public Opinion Strategies. Neil is an outstanding pollster with over 40 years of experience. He is a pro’s pro and a wonderful communicator. We had a wonderful response to part one of the interview, and believe you will find part two just as informative and interesting. Todd Smith provides an update on the latest in Georgia with his Gold Dome Report. As always, make sure to check out the Infographs for an in-depth look at current hot topics. We will be back after the election with a look back at what happened and why, and a look forward to the lame duck session and 2021.

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This Week in Washington, Georgia Edition - October 15, 2020

October 15, 2020

Heard on the Hill looks at the last mile of this Congress, with a particular focus on additional stimulus legislation by discussing what happened, what did not happen, and why. We look over the fence at the upcoming lame duck session, cover some odds and ends, preview the “Art of Polling” interview in Total Spectrum Spotlight, and cover the changes in campaign finance over 40 years in a section we call “It’s Raining Money”. Washington Whispers takes a deep dive into the battle for the control of the U.S. Senate. It breaks the races into four tiers, and shows why national interest in which party controls the Senate has never been greater. Ramona Lessen covered three hearings – one before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigation about a pathway to a vaccine, another before the House Small Business Subcommittee on Investigation and Regulations about preventing fraud and abuse in the Paycheck Protection Program, and finally the opening of this week’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the Honorable Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to be an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court. Ramona has condensed her reports but provides links for those who want to read and watch further. Jesse Weathington provides an update on two big healthcare and economic announcements in Georgia with his Gold Dome Report. As always, make sure to check out the Infographs for an in-depth look at current hot topics. We urge you to watch Part One of our Total Spectrum Spotlight interview with Neil Newhouse, co-founder of Public Opinion Strategies. Neil provides real insights about what does - and what does not – make a reliable poll and how his art changes with the times. You can also check out Part Two of the interview which is very informative.

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This Week in Washington, Georgia Edition - September 18, 2020

September 18, 2020

The NEW This Week in Washington starts now. We lead off with Patrick Robertson’s first “Washington Whispers” column. Erik Paulsen recently wrote an op/ed in Newsweek about the need for our trade agreements to prioritize American intellectual property, and we are reprinting it here. We write about what happened in August and some of the things to watch as we go forward toward the election in “Heard on the Hill”. Ramona Lessen reports on a Senate Homeland Security hearing in August on the U.S. Postal Service. And finally, Steve Gordon interviews former Congressman Erik Paulsen in our inaugural episode of Total Spectrum Spotlight, our newest feature bringing you short but meaningful video interviews with both news makers and news shapers.

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This Week in Washington, Georgia Edition - August 14, 2020

August 14, 2020

This week we have a special ‘Cleaning off the Desk’ version of Heard on the Hill. Ramona Lessen covers a recent House Subcommittee hearing discussing the urgent need for a national plan to contain the novel coronavirus. Jesse Weathington gives us an update on the elections this week and the latest in Georgia with his Gold Dome Report. As always, make sure to check out the Infographs for an in-depth look at current hot topics. Our Total Spectrum colleagues are taking some time off, as well as preparing for and managing the education of their children. We will be back right after Labor Day, or before if circumstances warrant.

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This Week in Washington, Georgia Edition - August 6, 2020

August 6, 2020

In this week’s Heard on the Hill, Steve Gordon, Erik Paulsen, and Todd Smith cover the process, negotiations, and progress toward the next COVID-19 recovery legislation. They share an interview with Senator Tim Scott (R-SC), and provide updates on bringing pharmaceutical manufacturing back to the U.S., Tuesday evening’s Kansas Republican primary election – the first battle for control of the U.S. Senate – and they report on the race for a COVID-19 vaccine in an update that’s appropriately titled ‘The Cavalry Is REALLY coming.’ Al Jackson brings us up to date on defense issues, while Ramona Lessen reports on a hearing held before the Senate Commerce Subcommittee on the PACT ACT and Section 230, the law that helped create the Internet and an examination of proposed reforms. Jesse Weathington gives us an update on legislative vetoes and signings by Governor Kemp and the latest in Georgia with his Gold Dome Report.

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This Week in Washington, Georgia Edition - July 23, 2020

July 23, 2020

The overriding subjects consuming Washington are COVID-19, the shutdown that has caused economic distress and hardship for millions of Americans, the development of vaccines that will lift us out of this fog, and the upcoming elections. Steve Gordon, Erik Paulsen and Todd Smith cover the beginning of negotiations for the next legislative response to COVID-19 and the first important election in the race for control of the U.S. Senate in Heard on the Hill. Ramona Lessen covered Tuesday’s hearing before the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee entitled ‘Efforts to develop a safe, effective, and accessible COVID-19 vaccine’, and she’s included key portions of the three-hour hearing in her report. We are pleased to introduce Patrick Robertson. He is new to the Total Spectrum family, but he is not new to Washington, D.C. Patrick is a licensed attorney who served on the staff of former Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) for nine years, the last five as the Senator’s Deputy Chief of Staff. Patrick has now been in Washington’s private sector for more than 12 years representing a range of clients including Fortune 50 companies, small associations, the government of a U.S. territory, and other companies and entities. He is an expert on tax, commerce, trade, telecom, and transportation issues, and we asked him to write his first article for This Week in Washington on independent restaurants – and a way to help them. Jesse Weathington gives us a look at the latest in Georgia with his Gold Dome Report.

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This Week in Washington, Georgia Edition - July 9, 2020

July 9, 2020

The Senate is working in-state, and the House is in pro-forma session. The Senate and the House of Representatives will return to Washington on July 20, and among the things they will work on is the next stimulus program, dubbed CARES 2. Heard on the Hill will return next time. For this edition of TWIW we have prepared two special articles. Sean Callinicos is a policy expert and government relations expert in health care, but he has a special focus in the vaccine industry. He was Assistant Vice President for Federal Government Affairs for Sanofi Pasteur during the avian and swine flu crises, and his work helped open the door for the development of America’s vaccine industry. Steve Gordon and Ramona Lessen interviewed Sean to learn about his experiences at Sanofi Pasteur and to discuss the current state of our vaccine industry. The House of Representatives Financial Services Committee held an oversight hearing last week on the Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve’s response to the pandemic. The invited guests were Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin and Chairman of the Federal Reserve Jerome Powell. John McKechnie, Total Spectrum’s Senior Partner and financial services expert, provided a summary and overview, and Ramona Lessen monitored the entire hearing. As usual, Jesse Weathington gives us a look at how the Georgia General Assembly finished up and the latest in Georgia with his Gold Dome Report.

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This Week in Washington, Georgia Edition - June 12, 2020

June 12, 2020

Steve Gordon, Erik Paulsen and Todd Smith discuss the first economic reports from America’s reopening, Congress and the Administration’s view on additional COVID-19 legislation, last week’s signing of changes to the Paycheck Protection Program, two Executive Orders, and a new feature we’re calling ‘This and That’ – all that in Heard on the Hill. Jesse Weathington gives us a look at the latest in Georgia with his Gold Dome Report. Steve Ruhlen, our appropriations expert, provides an update and predictions on the federal appropriations process during this election year. Steve Gordon responds to protests in his former home state of Minnesota, in Washington, D.C., and throughout most of the country with a special article he calls A Cry for Change.

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This Week in Washington, Georgia Edition - May 28, 2020

May 28, 2020

The Senate is out of Washington on a planned home state work week. The House of Representatives is in session, although 70 members of the House have filed public letters with the House Clerk asking to vote by proxy so they would not have to travel to Washington during the public health emergency. Steve Gordon, Erik Paulsen, and Todd Smith talk about the mood in Washington in this most unusual year, the first signs of economic recovery, the next major COVID-19 legislation and more in Heard on the Hill. With his years of experience working with the Pentagon, defense contractors, and defense appropriation legislation, Al Jackson, Strategic Consultant to Total Spectrum, has filed a report on defense and defense appropriations issues. Jesse Weathington gives us a look at the latest in Georgia with his Gold Dome Report. As always, make sure to check out the Infographs for an in-depth look at current hot topics. Stay safe, healthy AND sane…

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