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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Results 151 - 200 of 21,517
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Israel: Background and U.S. Relations In Brief
This report focuses on the following: Recent dynamics in U.S.-Israel relations, U.S.-Israel next steps following the July 2015 Iranian nuclear deal, regional threats Israel perceives from Hezbollah, Syria, and elsewhere, recently intensified Israeli-Palestinian tensions and violence in connection with Jerusalem's holy sites, and domestic political developments in Israel.
Recognition of Same-Sex Marriage: Implications for Religious Objections
The U.S. Supreme Court's highly anticipated decision in Obergefell v. Hodges recognized federal constitutional protection for same-sex marriage. This report will analyze a range of legal issues for which Obergefell has implications.
Changes in the Arctic: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides an overview of Arctic-related issues for Congress such as Arctic sovereignty claims, commercial shipping through the Arctic, Arctic oil, gas, and mineral exploration, endangered Arctic species, and increased military operations in the Arctic, and refers readers to more in-depth CRS reports on specific Arctic-related issues.
Department of Veterans Affairs FY2016 Appropriations: In Brief
This report discusses budget issues for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), which provides a range of benefits and services to veterans who meet certain eligibility rules.
The Effect of Base-Broadening Measures on Labor Supply and Investment: Considerations for Tax Reform
This report attempts to show how options to broaden the tax base by placing limitations on itemized deductions can potentially work against the expansionary effects of reducing marginal tax rates. The report also addresses other common base-broadening provisions that increase the effective marginal tax rate on the return to capital.
Escalating Violence in El Salvador
This report briefly discusses gangs and violence in El Salvador. It also examines the U.S. policy response.
Is This the First Step in Undoing Mass Incarceration? 6,000 Federal Drug Offenders Set to be Released
In early November, the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) is scheduled to release approximately 6,000 federal inmates convicted of drug trafficking offenses. This report briefly examines the background of this release and its potential effects.
Legislative Actions to Repeal, Defund, or Delay the Affordable Care Act
This report summarizes legislative actions taken to repeal, defund, delay, or otherwise amend the Affordable Care Act (ACA) since it was enacted in March 2010. The information is presented in three tables.
Vulnerable Youth: Federal Mentoring Programs and Issues
This report begins with an overview of the purpose of mentoring, including a brief discussion on research of structured mentoring programs. The report then describes the evolution of federal policies on mentoring since the early 1990s. The report provides an overview of the federal mentoring initiatives that are currently funded.
Agriculture and Related Agencies: FY2016 Appropriations
This report discusses the Agriculture appropriations bill for FY 2016, which funds the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) -- except for the Forest Service -- as well as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and, in even-numbered fiscal years, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).
China's Economic Rise: History, Trends, Challenges, and Implications for the United States
This report provides background on China's economic rise; describes its current economic structure; identifies the challenges China faces to maintain economic growth; and discusses the challenges, opportunities, and implications of China's economic rise for the United States.
China's Recent Stock Market Volatility: What Are the Implications?
China's two main stock markets, the Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) and the Shenzhen Stock Exchange (SZSE), experienced rapid price increases from about mid-2014 to mid-2015. However, from June 12 to July 7, 2015, the Shanghai and Shenzhen Composite Indices fell by 32% and 40%, respectively. This report briefly examines this volatility and the Chinese government's response.
Cybersecurity: Legislation, Hearings, and Executive Branch Documents
This report provides links to cybersecurity legislation in the 112th, 113th, and 114th Congresses.
Potential Policy Implications of the House Reconciliation Bill (H.R. 3762)
This report provides background on the reconciliation process and summarizes the provisions in the Restoring Americans' Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act of 2015 (H.R. 3762), including their projected budgetary impact. It then briefly examines some of the bill's policy implications.
U.S. Postal Service Workforce Size and Employment Categories, FY1995-FY2014
This report provides data from the past 20 years on the size and composition of the U.S. Postal Service's (USPS's) workforce. Reforms to the size and composition of the workforce have been an integral part of USPS's strategy to reduce costs and regain financial solvency, particularly between FY2007 and FY2014.
Elections in Haiti
This report briefly discusses various issues regarding the election process in Haiti. Haiti is in the midst of a national election cycle to fill all 119 seats in the Chamber of Deputies, 20 seats in the 30-seat Senate, and most municipal offices - and to elect a new president.
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA): Resources for Frequently Asked Questions
This report contains links to contacts for specific Affordable Care Act (ACA) questions and provides basic consumer sources, including a glossary of health coverage terms.
Points of Order in the Congressional Budget Process
This report summarizes the points of order currently in effect under the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, as amended, as well as related points of order established in various other measures that have a direct impact on budget enforcement.
Potential Impact of No Social Security COLA on Medicare Part B Premiums in 2016
This report provides an overview of Medicare Part B premiums, the relationship between the Social Security cost-of-living increase (COLA) and Part B premiums, and the potential impact of a projected 0% Social Security COLA in 2016 on Medicare premiums, based on recent projections by the Medicare Trustees.
Sanctuary Jurisdictions and Criminal Aliens: In Brief
This report examines the interplay between the federal government (i.e., ICE) and state and local jurisdictions in enforcing immigration law, with a specific focus on noncitizens who have been convicted of a crime. It explores major programs and federal resources available to state and local law enforcement agencies that cooperate with ICE to enforce immigration law.
U.S.-Mexico Security Cooperation Following "El Chapo" Guzmán's Escape
This report discusses U.S.-Mexican security cooperation in the wake of the escape of Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán on July 11, 2015, from a maximum security federal prison near Mexico City.
Backlog of Sexual Assault Evidence: In Brief
This report provides background on the sexual assault kit (SAKs, also referred to as "rape kits") backlog and information on federal efforts to reduce it. The backlog of SAKs has raised concerns over justice for assault victims and that additional victimizations could have been prevented had the evidence from any given kit been tested and the perpetrator apprehended in a timely manner.
Federal Affirmative Action Law: A Brief History
This report provides a brief history of federal affirmative action law, including legal and political developments at the federal, state, and local levels. It describes the origins, affirmative action in public education, minority contracting, and recent developments as of 2015.
Federal Aid for Reconstruction of Houses of Worship: A Legal Analysis
This report examines the constitutional rules governing federal funding for religious buildings and analyzes the Court's previous decisions on this issue. It also analyzes more recent lower court and administrative opinions that have distinguished the Court's decisions and allowed public funds to be awarded to houses of worship.
Greenhouse Gas Pledges by Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
This report briefly summarizes the existing commitments and pledges of selected national and regional governments to limit their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions as contributions to the global effort. The negotiations cover additional topics, including adaptation to the impacts of climate change and financing to assist the efforts of low-income countries.
Iran's Nuclear Program: Tehran's Compliance with International Obligations
This report provides a brief overview of Iran's nuclear program and describes the legal basis for the actions taken by the IAEA board and the Security Council.
Legislative Branch Agency Appointments: History, Processes, and Recent Actions
This report contains information on the legislative branch agency heads' appointment processes, length of tenures (if terms are set), reappointment or removal provisions (if any), salaries and benefits, and most recent appointments.
U.S. Foreign Assistance to the Middle East: Historical Background, Recent Trends, and the FY2016 Request
This report is an overview of U.S. foreign assistance to the Middle East, including a brief historical review of foreign aid levels, a description of specific country programs, and an analysis of current foreign aid issues. The Middle East is perennially a major focus of interest as Congress exercises these powers.
International Crises and Disasters: U.S. Humanitarian Assistance Response Mechanisms
This report examines U.S. humanitarian assistance in international crises and disaster situations. It considers the sources and types of U.S. government aid, the response mechanisms of key U.S. agencies and departments, and possible issues for Congress.
U.S.-China Cyber Agreement
During the state visit on September 24-25, 2015, President Xi Jinping of China and President Barack Obama reached a Cyber Agreement. This report briefly discusses that agreement.
Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy
This report examines the current political state of Afghanistan at length, discussing the political background, security policy, and regional relations.
The Army's M-1 Abrams, M-2/M-3 Bradley, and M-1126 Stryker: Background and Issues for Congress
This report discusses various issues surrounding the M-1 Abrams Tank, the M-2/M-3 Bradley Fighting Vehicle (BFV), and the M-1126 Stryker Combat Vehicle, centerpieces of the Army's Armored Brigade Combat Teams (ABCTs) and Stryker Brigade Combat Teams (SBCTs). Congress is concerned with the long-term military effectiveness of these vehicles.
Cost-of-Living Adjustments for Federal Civil Service Annuities
This report discusses the Cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) for the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) and the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) and government retirees, as well as related legislation.
Instances of Use of United States Armed Forces Abroad, 1798-2015
This report lists hundreds of instances in which the United States has used its Armed Forces abroad in situations of military conflict or potential conflict or for other than normal peacetime purposes. It is intended primarily to provide a rough survey of past U.S. military ventures abroad, without reference to the magnitude of the given instance noted.
Less-than-Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement Signed in Burma
Eight ethnic groups and representatives of Burma's government signed a ceasefire agreement on October 15, possibly moving the country one step closer to ending its six decade long civil war. This report briefly discusses the process that lead to the agreement and its implications.
"Regulatory Relief" for Banking: Selected Legislation in the 114th Congress
This report discusses regulatory relief legislation for banks in the 114th Congress that, at the time this report was published, has seen floor action or has been ordered to be reported by a committee. Many, but not all, of the bills would make changes to the Dodd-Frank Act (P.L. 111-203), wide ranging financial reform enacted in response to the financial crisis.
U.S. Natural Gas Exports and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement
On October 5, 2015, President Obama announced the conclusion of negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a free trade agreement (FTA) among the United States and 11 other Asia-Pacific nations - Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam. This report briefly discusses the agreement and its potential effects.
China-U.S. Trade Issues
This report provides an overview of U.S.-China commercial relations, including major trade disputes.
Enrollment of Legislation: Relevant Congressional Procedures
This report discusses the enrollment process of bills and resolutions in Congress.
Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA): Background and Funding
This report provides an overview of the federal response to domestic violence--defined broadly to include acts of physical and nonphysical violence against spouses and other intimate partners--through the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA).
Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV): Background and Issues for Congress
This report discusses the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) being developed by the Army and the Marine Corps as a successor to the High Mobility, Multi-Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV). A potential issue for Congress is the possible impact of a year-long continuing resolution on Army and Marine Corps JLTV procurement.
Points of Order Limiting the Contents of Reconciliation Legislation: In Brief
This report discusses various provisions in the Budget Act (as well as other provisions adopted by the House and Senate) that impose constraints on the policy content or budgetary impact of reconciliation measures or amendments.
Sentence Reform Acts: S.2123 and H.R. 3713
This report discusses the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2015, S. 2123, and the Sentencing Reform Act of 2015, H.R. 3713, use virtually identical language to reduce the impact of the mandatory minimum sentences which federal courts must now impose for certain drug trafficking and firearms offenses.
Appropriations Subcommittee Structure: History of Changes from 1920 to 2015
This report details the evolution of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees' subcommittee structure from the 1920s to the present.
Bitcoin: Questions, Answers, and Analysis of Legal Issues
This report has three major sections. The first section answers some basic questions about Bitcoin and the operation of the Bitcoin network and its interaction with the current dollar-based monetary system. The second section summarizes likely reasons for and against widespread Bitcoin adoption. The third section discusses legal and regulatory matters that have been raised by Bitcoin and other digital currencies.
Colombian Peace Talks Breakthrough: A Possible End- Game?
This report briefly discusses the recent breakthrough reached in talks between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) just a day after Pope Francis left Cuba, following more than 40 rounds of discussions held in Havana since November 2012.
The Internet of Things: Frequently Asked Questions
This report was developed to assist Congress in responding to some commonly asked questions about the Internet of Things (IoT), a complex, often poorly understood phenomenon.
Public Health Service Agencies: Overview and Funding (FY2010-FY2016)
This report gives a brief overview of the eight agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) which are designated components of the U.S. Public Health Services (PHS), and summarizes its funding for FY2010 through FY2016.
Risk and Needs Assessment in the Criminal Justice System
This report provides information on the use of risk and needs assessment in the criminal justice system. It starts with an overview of risk and needs assessment and a discussion of some of the critiques of it. The report concludes with a discussion of the issues policymakers might consider if they debate legislation to expand the use of risk and needs assessment in the federal prison system.
Russian Compliance with the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty: Background and Issues for Congress
This report describes the current status of the INF Treaty and highlights issues that Congress may address as the United States pursues its compliance concerns with Russia. It includes a historical overview and summary of the provisions of the INF Treaty and Russia's concerns with U.S. compliance with the treaty and concludes with a discussion of options that the United States might pursue to address its concerns with Russia's activities and options that it might pursue if Russia deploys new INF-range missiles.