115th Congress – More Time in DC; Less Time At Home
The 115th congress gaveled into session on January 3rd. The legislative calendars are out for both the House and Senate.
Senate – http://www.senate.gov/legislative/2017_schedule.htm
House – https://www.majorityleader.gov/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/2017_ANNUAL_CALENDAR.pdf
Although the calendars are subject to change as the session progresses, the initial schedule shows the House to be in session many more days than in previous Congresses. For the last several years, the House was in recess for every two weeks in Washington. The 2017 the calendar is more typical of previous Congresses and aligned with the Senate, with recesses built around holidays.
The legislative calendar reflects the workload Congress faces as the new administration pushes to achieve its “100 Day” objectives.
An increase in the number of legislative days in the House and Senate means more time to hold hearings and consider legislation. It could also lead to renewed bipartisan collaboration and cooperation. The reduced Congressional schedule in recent years has been lamented by both Democrats and Republicans as contributing to the lack of bipartisan cooperation. Fewer days in Washington results in less time for Members to socialize and develop working relationships.