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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Results 14101 - 14150 of 21,517
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War Bonds in the Second World War: A Model for a New Iraq/Afghanistan War Bond?
This report discusses the high costs of fighting the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that have rekindled congressional interest in the concept of the sale of a Treasury security to help finance these war costs.
Amendments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Set to Expire February 28, 2010
The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) provides a statutory framework by which government agencies may, when gathering foreign intelligence investigation, obtain authorization to conduct electronic surveillance or physical searches, utilize pen registers and trap and trace devices, or access specified business records and other tangible things. This report discusses three sunsetting amendments of FISA which include the "Lone Wolf" provision, "roving" wiretaps, and access to business records.
Chile: Political and Economic Conditions and U.S. Relations
This report provides a brief historical background of Chile, examines recent political and economic developments, and addresses issues in U.S.-Chilean relations.
Government Collection of Private Information: Background and Issues Related to the USA PATRIOT Act Reauthorization
This report discusses the history of constitutional interpretations and legislative responses relevant to the collection of private information for criminal investigation, foreign intelligence gathering, and national security purposes.
Navy Force Structure and Shipbuilding Plans: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides background information and presents potential issues for Congress concerning the Navy's ship force-structure goals and shipbuilding plans. The planned size of the Navy, the rate of Navy ship procurement, and the prospective affordability of the Navy's shipbuilding plans have been matters of concern for the congressional defense committees for the past several years. Decisions that Congress makes on Navy shipbuilding programs can substantially affect Navy capabilities and funding requirements, and the U.S. shipbuilding industrial base.
Tax Options for Financing Health Care Reform
This report reviews the revenue raisers proposed to fund health care reform. Other financing proposals are presented including those made by the Obama Administration and those introduced in earlier congressional work. The final sections discuss other proposals suggested by the round-table discussion participants.
Ukraine: Current Issues and U.S. Policy
This report offers background information on Ukraine's current political and economic situation. It also discusses U.S. policy, U.S. aid to Ukraine, the congressional response, and related legislation.
Accelerated Vehicle Retirement for Fuel Economy: "Cash for Clunkers"
This report outlines the key provisions of the Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save (CARS) program established by P.L. 111-32, which provide rebates to prospective purchasers toward the purchase of new, fuel-efficient vehicles, provided the trade-in vehicles are scrapped. It discusses the impact of the program on the economy and also summarizes similar programs in other industrial countries.
Africa: U.S. Foreign Assistance Issues
The United States provides assistance to 47 African countries, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has 23 missions in Africa. In recent years, U.S. assistance to Africa saw a major increase, especially in health-related programs. This report provides an overview of U.S. aid to Africa, including the strategic objectives that shape U.S. aid to Africa, information about specific aid programs and initiatives, and the Obama Administration's FY2011 foreign aid budget request.
Border Security: The Role of the U.S. Border Patrol
This report discusses the United States Border Patrol's history as our nation's first line of defense against unauthorized migration. Today, the USBP's primary mission is to detect and prevent the entry of terrorists, weapons of mass destruction, and illegal aliens into the country, and to interdict drug smugglers and other criminals along the border.
Earthquakes: Risk, Detection, Warning, and Research
This report discusses: The National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program NEHRP; earthquake hazards and risk in the United States; federal programs that support earthquake monitoring; the U.S. capability to detect earthquakes and issue notifications and warnings; and federally supported research to improve the fundamental scientific understanding of earthquakes with a goal of reducing U.S. vulnerability.
The European Union: Leadership Changes Resulting from the Lisbon Treaty
This report discusses EU foreign policy decisions of a political or security-related nature that require unanimous intergovernmental agreement among the 27 member states. And many other issues which may relate to external affairs, however, EU members have agreed to pool their decision-making sovereignty. A number of additional EU actors often have particular relevance in these matters.
Iraq: Oil and Gas Sector, Revenue Sharing, and U.S. Policy
This report reviews policy proposals and interim contracts, analyzes the positions of various Iraqi political actors, and discusses potential implications for U.S. foreign policy goals in Iraq.
Iraq: Politics, Elections, and Benchmarks
This report provides an overview of Iraq's political transition from the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein to a plural polity that encompasses varying sects and ideological and political factions. This report also addresses ongoing governmental instabilities and their causes, as well as U.S. concerns about possible Iranian influence in Iraq as U.S. forces depart the country.
Islam: Sunnis and Shiites
This report includes a historical background of the Sunni-Shiite split and discusses the differences in religious beliefs and practices between and within each Islamic sect as well as their similarities. The report also relates Sunni and Shiite religious beliefs to discussions of terrorism and sectarian violence that may be of interest during the 111th Congress.
Syria: Background and U.S. Relations
This report discusses the recent conflict in Syria including an overview of the situation, information about anti- and pro-Asad forces, background on chemical weapons and disarmament, plans for U.S. policy and assistance, and a general sense of the future outlook.
Defense Logistical Support Contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan: Issues for Congress
This report examines logistical support contracts for troop support services in Iraq and Afghanistan administered through the U.S. Army's Logistics Civil Augmentation Program (LOGCAP). LOGCAP is an initiative designed to manage the use of civilian contractors that perform services during times of war and other military mobilizations.
Strategic Arms Control After START: Issues and Options
The United States and Soviet Union signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty in 1991; it entered into force in December 1994 and expired in December 2009. This report provides background information about the START Treaty and reviews the discussions about a possible successor to START. It also presents a range of alternatives that the United States and Russia might consider if they choose to follow START with a new framework for the arms control process.
Afghanistan: U.S. Foreign Assistance
The U.S. program of assistance to Afghanistan is intended to stabilize and strengthen the Afghan economic, social, political, and security environment so as to blunt popular support for extremist forces in the region. Since 2001, nearly $47 billion has been appropriated toward this effort. This report provides a "big picture" overview of the U.S. aid program and congressional action. It describes what various aid agencies report they are doing in Afghanistan. It does not address the effectiveness of their programs.
Brazil-U.S. Relations
This report analyzes Brazil's political, economic, and social conditions, and how those conditions affect its role in the region and its relationship with the United States.
Managing the Nuclear Fuel Cycle: Policy Implications of Expanding Global Access to Nuclear Power
This report discusses motivating factors underlying the resurgent interest in nuclear power, the nuclear power industry's current state of affairs, and the interdependence of the various stages of the nuclear fuel cycle. A number of proposals have been offered that are aimed at limiting direct participation in the global nuclear fuel industry by assuring access to nuclear fuel supplies.
Afghanistan Casualties: Military Forces and Civilians
This report collects statistics from a variety of sources on casualties sustained during Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF), which began on October 7, 2001. OEF actions took place primarily in Afghanistan; however, OEF casualties also includes American casualties in Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Guantanamo Bay (Cuba), Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Jordan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, the Philippines, Seychelles, Sudan, Tajikistan, Turkey, and Yemen.
Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance
This report discusses the current political state of Afghanistan, as well as the Afghan government. This report also discusses Afghanistan's relationship with the United States, particularly U.S. efforts to urge President Hamid Karzai to address corruption within the Afghan government.
FY2011 Budget Documents: Internet and GPO Availability
This report provides brief descriptions of the budget volumes and related documents, together with Internet addresses, Government Printing Office (GPO) stock numbers, and prices to obtain these publications. It also tells how to find locations of government depository libraries, which can provide both printed copies for reference use and Internet access to the text.
Haiti Earthquake: Crisis and Response
The largest earthquake ever recorded in Haiti devastated parts of the country, including the capital, on January 12, 2010. This report discusses the disaster and various responses, ranging from the Haitian government's initial response to foreign humanitarian and financial aid.
International Drug Control Policy
This report provides an overview of U.S. international drug control policy. It describes major international counternarcotics initiatives and evaluates the broad array of U.S. drug control policy tools currently in use. The report also considers alternative counterdrug policy approaches to current initiatives and raises several counterdrug policy issues and considerations for policy makers.
Legislative Options After Citizens United v. FEC: Constitutional and Legal Issues
This report provides a background on legislative options after Citizens United v. FEC. The report discusses increased disclaimer requirements, disclosure of donors to organizations, restrictions on foreign-owned corporations, and taxation of corporate campaign-related expenditures.
The U.S. Secret Service: An Examination and Analysis of Its Evolving Missions
This report frames potential policy questions concerning the U.S. Secret Service's (USSS's) mission and organization through an examination of the USSS history and its statutory authorities, mission, and present activities within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
United Nations System Funding: Congressional Issues
This report tracks the process by which Congress provides the funding for U.S. assessed contributions to the regular budgets of the United Nations, its agencies, and U.N. peacekeeping operation accounts, as well as for U.S. voluntary contributions to U.N. system programs and funds. It includes information on the President's request and the congressional response, as well as congressional initiatives during this legislative process. Basic information is provided to help the reader understand this process.
Visa Security Policy: Roles of the Departments of State and Homeland Security
This report discusses the visa security and visa policy questions debated in Congress. The policy questions center on whether immigration law needs to be strengthened, whether funding should be increased, and which agency should take the lead.
FEMA Disaster Cost-Shares: Evolution and Analysis
This report discusses cost-share waivers by program area, historical cost-share thresholds, hurricanes Katrina, Wilma, Dennis, and Rita, as well as hurricanes Gustav, Ike and other disasters.
The FY2011 Federal Budget
This report provides an historical overview of the budget trends through the most recently completed fiscal year (2009). It discusses major budgetary challenges over the past several fiscal years given the current economic conditions and provides an in-depth discussion of the FY2011 budget process. Finally, it provides context for the issues facing the country's federal budget over the long term.
Federal Research and Development Funding: FY2011
This report summarizes the FY2011 budget request for research & development (R&D) funding, including comparisons to R&D funding requests in the FY2010 budget. Congress will play a central role in defining the nation's R&D priorities, especially with respect to two overarching issues: the extent to which the Federal R&D investment can grow in the context of increased pressure on discretionary spending and how available funding will be prioritized and allocated. This report breaks down in detail the various aspects of the President's FY2011 R&D funding request.
Gun Control Legislation
This report provides basic firearms-related statistics, an overview of federal firearms law, and a summary of legislative action in the 111th Congress. The report concludes with salient issues that have generated significant congressional interest, including the 1994-2004 LCAFD ban.
Immigration Visa Issuances and Grounds for Exclusion: Policy and Trends
This report's review of the legislative developments in visa policy over the past 20 years and analysis of the statistical trends in visa issuances and denials provide a nuanced study of U.S. visa policy and the grounds for exclusion.
Running Deficits: Positives and Pitfalls
This report discusses how deficit finance can help governments manage their economies and how large and persistent deficits can lead to severe economic problems.
Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia: Security Issues and Implications for U.S. Interests
This report discusses the internal and external security concerns of the South Caucasus states and U.S. interests and policy toward the region. The countries of Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia are generally considered as comprising the South Caucasus region, which borders Russia, Turkey, and Iran.
Chile Earthquake: U.S. and International Response
This report discusses the Earthquake in Chile, the current condition, the response from Chilean government, international humanitarian response, as well as the U.S. humanitarian response. The report provides background information on Chile and U.S. relations and policy issues.
Fiscal Year 2011 Department of Homeland Security Assistance to States and Localities
This report provides overview information on the proposed FY2011 budget request for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) programs that provide assistance to state and local governments. These programs are primarily used by first responders -- including firefighters, emergency medical personnel, emergency managers, and law enforcement officers -- to provide assistance for training, exercises, the purchase of equipment, and other support for terrorism and disaster preparedness and response activities.
Iceland's Financial Crisis
This report discusses the banking collapse in Iceland. Iceland's banking system had collapsed as a result of a culmination of a series of decisions the banks made that left them highly exposed to disruptions in financial markets. The collapse of the banks raised questions for U.S. leaders and others about supervising banks that operate across national borders, especially as it has become increasingly difficult to distinguish the limits of domestic financial markets.
Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses
This report discusses the reasons that Iran is considered a threat to U.S. security, including Iran's nuclear program, involvement with terrorist organizations, and involvement with neighboring countries' local governments. The report also discusses ways which the U.S. hopes to modify Iran's behavior with sanctions, and the effectiveness of these sanctions.
Limiting Central Government Budget Deficits: International Experiences
This report focuses on how major developed and emerging-market country governments, particularly the G-20 and Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries, limit their fiscal deficits.
Moldova: Background and U.S. Policy
This report provides information and analysis on Moldova, including its political and economic situation, foreign policy, and on U.S. policy toward Moldova.
The OECD Initiative on Tax Havens
This report examines the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and its role in changes to U.S. laws related to bribery, tax havens.
Trade Agreements: Impact on the U.S. Economy
This report examines the major features of economic models being used to estimate the effects of trade agreements. It assesses the strengths and weaknesses of the models as an aid in helping Congress evaluate the economic impact of trade agreements on the U.S. economy.
U.S.-Japan Economic Relations: Significance, Prospects, and Policy Options
his report explores the significance and state of U.S.-Japan economic ties; how the ties have changed over time; and what the possible options for managing the relationship might be.
Universal Service Fund: Background and Options for Reform
This report discusses the idea that all Americans should be able to afford access to the telecommunications network; this is commonly called the "universal service concept" and can trace its origins back to the 1934 Communications Act.
Air Force KC-X Tanker Aircraft Program: Background and Issues for Congress
This report discusses issues for Congress in FY2011, which are whether to approve, reject, or modify DOD's new KC-X competition strategy, and whether to approve, reject, or modify the Air Force's request for FY2011 research and development funding for the new KC-X program.
Earthquake Risk, Insurance, and Recovery: Issues for Congress
This report examines earthquake catastrophe risk and insurance in the United States in light of recent developments, particularly the devastating earthquakes in Haiti and Chile. It examines both traditional and non-traditional approaches for financing recovery from earthquake losses as well as challenges in financing catastrophe losses with insurance.
Economic Effects of a Budget Deficit Exceeding $1 Trillion
This report evaluates questions regarding whether the current deficit is manageable and what effects it will have on the economy.