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 Decade: 2000-2009
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Iraq: Politics, Elections, and Benchmarks
This report discusses Iraq's political system. The result of a U.S.-supported election process, it continues to be driven by sectarianism and ethnic and factional infighting.
Israeli-Arab Negotiations: Background, Conflicts, and U.S. Policy
This report discusses issues related to peace in the Middle East, including post-Gulf War negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon; U.S. interest in these and continuing negotiations and peacetalks between Middle Eastern countries; and the role of the U.S., the U.N., the European Union, and Russia in Middle Eastern relations.
Emergency Communications Legislation: Implications for the 110th Congress
This report discusses legislation addressing communications among first responders and the issues such as interoperability -- the capability of different systems to connect.
Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy
This report discusses Afghanistan's political transition, which was completed with the convening of a parliament in December 2005. Since then, insurgent threats to Afghanistan's government have escalated to the point that some experts are questioning the future of U.S. stabilization efforts.
Congressional Nominations to U.S. Service Academies: An Overview and Resources for Outreach and Management
This report describes statutory requirements for allocating congressional nominations to service academies and identifies the qualifications that must be met by potential nominees, as established by statute and each academy. Sample documents that could be used by congressional offices at various stages of the nomination selection process are included.
Private Security Contractors in Iraq: Background, Legal Status, and Other Issues
This report summarizes what is currently known publicly about companies that provide personnel for security missions in Iraq and some sources of controversy surrounding them. The report also summarizes pertinent legislative proposals.
Long-Range Ballistic Missile Defense in Europe
This report discusses how successive U.S. governments have urged the creation of an anti-missile system to protect against long-range ballistic missile threats from adversary states. The proposed U.S. system has encountered resistance in some European countries and beyond.
Military Medical Care: Questions and Answers
This report answers several frequently-asked questions about military health care, particularly related to TRICARE and its various aspects.
Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker Modernization: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress
This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the modernization of the Coast Guard's polar icebreaker fleet, which performs a variety of missions supporting U.S. interests in polar regions.
Navy LPD-17 Amphibious Ship Procurement: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress
This report discusses the Navy's FY2009 shipbuilding plan that calls for procuring an 10th San Antonio (LPD-17) class amphibious ship in FY2011. This report discusses the procurement cost estimates of this ship, as well as related issues for Congress.
Evolution of the Senate's Role in the Nomination and Confirmation Process: A Brief History
This report discusses the process of Advice and Consent in the Senate. Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution states that the President "shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other Public Ministers and Counsels, Judges of the Supreme Court, and all Other Officers of the United States, whose appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by law…."
Colombia: Issues for Congress
This report provides an overview of recent political developments in Colombia, including the administration of President Uribe (2002-2010), continuing into the election of President Juan Manuel Santos. It discusses the political issues including Colombia's longstanding conflict with internal armed groups and ongoing challenges such as human rights, demobilization and displacement, drug trends, and Colombia's regional relations.
Emergency Economic Stabilization Act: Preliminary Analysis of Oversight Provisions
This report discusses the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, which provides authority for the Secretary of the Treasury to purchase and insure "troubled assets" to provide stability and prevent disruption in the economy and financial system.
DDG-1000 and DDG-51 Destroyer Programs: Background, Oversight Issues, and Options for Congress
This report provides background information on DDG-1000 (Zumwalt) program. The report discusses Navy's proposed FY2010 budget requests $1,084.2 million to complete the cost of a third Zumwalt (DDG-1000) class destroyer that was authorized but only partially funded in FY2009.
Unauthorized Alien Students: Issues and "DREAM Act" Legislation
Multiple bills have been introduced in recent Congresses to address the unauthorized student population. While there are other options for dealing with this population, this report deals exclusively with the DREAM Act approach of proposing relief for unauthorized students in light of the widespread congressional interest in it.
Public, Educational, and Governmental (PEG) Access Cable Television Channels: Issues for Congress
This report discusses public, educational, and governmental (PEG) access channels that are set aside for use by the general public, by local schools, colleges, and universities, and by elements of local government.
Tsunami Detection and Warnings for the United States
This report discusses topics in respect to tsunami disaster warnings for the United States, discussions ensued between the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) about developing a multi-hazard warning and response system.
Presidential Records: Issues for the 111th Congress
This report analyzes President Barack Obama's first executive order (E.O. 13489), which rescinded E.O. 13233, and discusses its departure from the policies of the previous administration. Additionally, this report examines H.R. 35 and its possible legislative effects on the presidential records policies of the Obama Administration.
International Criminal Court Cases in Africa: Status and Policy Issues
This report provides background on current International Criminal Court (ICC) cases and examines issues raised by the ICC's actions in Africa, including the potential deterrence of future abuses and the potential impact on African peace processes.
Mexico-U.S. Relations: Issues for Congress
This report covers the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and U.S.-Mexico drug trafficking. It also looks at migration, environmental issues, legislation in the 110th Congress, and the relationship between the Bush Administration and Mexico.
Cuba: Issues for the 109th Congress
This report discusses U.S.-Cuba relations since the early 1960s. There are several schools of thought on how to achieve the objective of bringing democracy and respect for human rights to Cuba: some advocate maximum pressure on Cuba until reforms are enacted; others argue for lifting some U.S. sanctions judged to be hurting the Cuban people; and still others call for a swift normalization of U.S.-Cuban relations.
Federal Personnel: Conversion of Employees from Appointed (Noncareer) Positions to Career Positions in the Executive Branch
This report discusses the conversion of employees from appointed (noncareer) positions to career positions in the executive branch. This practice, commonly referred to as "burrowing in," is permissible when laws and regulations governing career appointments are followed.
Middle East Elections 2009: Lebanon, Iran, Afghanistan, and Iraq
This report provides an overview of the election contests in Lebanon, Iran, Afghanistan, and Iraq, including possible outcomes and implications for U.S. policy. The strategic influence of Iran in the Middle East, the stability of Iraq, and the ongoing war in Afghanistan are at the forefront of U.S. policy and Congressional interest in the region.
Medicaid and Schools
This report discusses the recent history and current issues facing Medicaid funding for certain health related costs under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
Turkmenistan: Recent Developments and U.S. Interests
This report examines Turkmenistan's halting economic and political reforms under the authoritarian leadership of President Saparmurad Niyazov. It discusses U.S. policy and assistance, including support for grassroots democratization and advocacy for human rights, and provides basic facts and biographical information.
Are Carbon Dioxide Emissions Rising More Rapidly Than Expected?
This report discusses the recent emissions estimates with the greenhouse gas (GHG) and addresses the question, are carbon dioxide emissions rising more rapidly than expected?
Open Ocean Aquaculture
This report discusses four general areas: (1) operational and business-related challenges; (2) potential environmental impacts; (3) potential economic impacts; and (4) the legal and regulatory environment. It then summarizes recent executive and legislative actions.
Underground Carbon Dioxide Sequestration: Frequently Asked Questions
This report answers frequently asked questions about the geologic sequestration of carbon dioxide (CO2). The questions are broadly representative of typical inquiries regarding the process and mechanics of storing CO2 underground, how much might be stored, and what might happen to CO2 once it is injected underground.
U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF): Background and Issues for Congress
This report discusses Special Operations Forces (SOF), which play a significant role in U.S. military operations and have been given greater responsibility for planning and conducting worldwide counterterrorism operations. It outlines potential policy issues for congressional consideration.
U.S. National Science Foundation: Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR)
This report discusses current policy involving the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) of the National Science Foundation (NSF), as well as budget requests.
Stability in Russia's Chechnya and Other Regions of the North Caucasus: Recent Developments
This report provides background information on terrorist attacks in Russia's North Caucasus, which appeared to increase substantially in 2007-2009. The report discusses impact of the August 2008 Russia-Georgia conflict and the recent development in the Northern Caucasus.
Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies: FY2009 Appropriations
This report examines various aspects of H.R. 1, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), otherwise known as the "economic stimulus," passed by both chambers and enacted by President Barak Obama on February 17, 2009.
House Rules Affecting Committees
This report identifies and summarizes the provisions of the House of Representatives' standing rules and certain other directives that affect committee powers, authority, activities, and operations. It is organized under seven headings: (1) general, (2) establishment and assignments, (3) hearings, markups, and other meetings, (4) reporting, (5) oversight and investigations, (6) funding, staff, and travel, and (7) other duties.
Section 811 and Other HUD Housing Programs for Persons with Disabilities
This report describes how federal funds are used to develop housing designated for persons with disabilities. It also discusses current issues surrounding housing for persons with disabilities.
Historic Preservation: Background and Funding
This report summarizes the federal role in historic preservation. It provides descriptions of and funding information for some of the major preservation programs, including the Historic Preservation Fund (HPF), the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and the National Register for Historic Places. Some Members of Congress have given historic preservation programs close scrutiny and have recommended that historic preservation activities be supported increasingly by the private sector.
"Fast Track" Parliamentary Procedures of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act
This report examines the procedures of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (Division A of H.R. 1424, P.L. 110-343) and explains how they differ from the regular parliamentary mechanisms of the House and Senate. It will be updated as needed.
"Fast Track" Procedures to Disapprove Additional Funds Under the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act
This report examines the procedures of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (EESA, Division A of H.R. 1424, P.L. 110-343) and explains how they differ from the regular parliamentary mechanisms of the House and Senate. It also estimates certain deadlines under the act based on the recent submission of the President's report.
U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea: Living Resources Provisions
This report describes provisions of the LOS Convention relating to living marine resources and discusses how these provisions comport with current U.S. marine policy.
Reauthorization of the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC): Opportunity to Reexamine the Congressionally Mandated Antitrust Exemption for Ocean Liner Carriers?
The focus of this report is on the commercial aspects of the U.S. liner trade. The report discusses the historical rationale for shipping conferences and legislative history of U.S. shipping law.
Open Ocean Aquaculture
This report discusses open ocean aquaculture, which is defined as the rearing of marine organisms under controlled conditions in exposed, high-energy ocean environments beyond significant coastal influence, is one possible option for meeting increasing consumer demand for marine products and offering new and alternative employment opportunities.
The Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000: Forest Service Payments to Counties
This report describes the issues that Congress has debated relating to The Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000 (P.L. 106-393), which may again arise when the program expires in 2011, and explains the changes enacted for the program.
Campaign Financing: Highlights and Chronology of Current Federal Law
This report summarizes major provisions of federal law and offers a chronology of key legislative and judicial actions which govern financial activity of federal election campaigns. The laws are based on two principal statutes: the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) of 1971, as amended in 1974, 1976, 1979, and 2002, and the Revenue Act of 1971.
In Re Terrorist Attacks on September 11, 2001: Dismissals of Claims Against Saudi Defendants Under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA)
This report summarizes the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) and jurisdiction in cases against foreign defendants and analyzes the recent court of appeals decision. This report examines the legal bases for those dismissals.
Haiti: Post-Hurricane Conditions and Assistance
This report discusses U.S. and international disaster assistance to Haiti following storms in August and September 2008 which caused widespread devastation.
Navy F/A-18E/F and EA-18G Aircraft Procurement and Strike Fighter Shortfall: Background and Issues for Congress
This report discusses the Navy's proposed FY2010 budget requests (about $1.0 billion) for the procurement of 22 F/A- 18E/F Super Hornet strike fighters and about $1.6 billion for the procurement of 12 EA-18G Growler electric attack aircraft. The issue for Congress is whether to approve, reject, or modify the Navy's FY2010 funding request for procurement of nine F/A-18E/Fs, and whether to approve a third MYP arrangement for procuring Super Hornets and Growlers in FY2010-FY2014.
Fannie Mae's and Freddie Mac's Financial Problems: Frequently Asked Questions
This report discusses the decision to place Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in conservatorship and to a certain extent, the housing, mortgage, and even general financial markets.
Consolidated Appropriations Act for FY2009 (P.L. 110-329): An Overview
This report provides an overview of the Consolidated Appropriations Act for FY2009, including a brief discussion of the budgetary and legislative context in which the act was developed and considered, a short summary of its provisions, and a legislative history.
Nuclear Waste Disposal: Alternatives to Yucca Mountain
This report discusses the options for the Yucca Mountain waste repository application and the likely impact of indefinite delays in the waste program. It then discusses the mid- and long-term alternatives to the existing waste program, and finally reviews the history of U.S. efforts to site nuclear waste facilities.
Reporting Requirements in the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008
This report describes the various reporting requirements in the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (EESA) and is organized according to the entities required to prepare and submit the reports. The report also provides some concluding observations regarding those requirements.
Extending NASA's Exemption from the Iran, North Korea, and Syria Nonproliferation Act
This report discusses the Iran Nonproliferation Act of 2000 (INA), which was enacted to help stop foreign transfers to Iran of weapons of mass destruction, missile technology, and advanced conventional weapons technology, particularly from Russia.