U.S. Congress

Experts in this Keyword

James M. Lindsay
James M. Lindsay

Senior Vice President, Director of Studies, and Maurice R. Greenberg Chair

Carla Anne Robbins
Carla Anne Robbins

Senior Fellow

  • Ukraine
    Will Ukraine Survive?
    What Ukraine and its Western backers have accomplished in the wake of Russia’s February 2022 invasion is extraordinary. But with congressional Republicans blocking further US military aid, even as Russia begins to make gains on the battlefield, there is reason to be concerned about what the war’s third year will bring.
  • Technology and Innovation
    Cyber Week in Review: February 2, 2024
    Senate holds hearing on child safety on social media; U.S. disables Chinese botnet; Taylor Swift deepfakes flood social media; AI companies have to report safety tests to government; Brazil investigating Bolsonaro's spyware use.
  • Technology and Innovation
    The Largest Senate Judiciary Committee Audience Is on Capitol Hill—and at Home—Today
    Today's Senate hearing on big tech and the child exploitation crisis should remind the public of Section 230's provision on parental controls, and the real-world analogies to how social media platforms operate.
  • Middle East and North Africa
    Mideast Tensions Grow, Consumer Electronics Show Spotlights AI, Divided U.S. Congress Returns, and More
    U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken returns to the Middle East as the region reacts to attacks in Iran, Lebanon, and the Red Sea; the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas previews new products and services equipped with artificial intelligence (AI); the U.S. Congress returns from its holiday recess with divisions over migration and defense aid; and the stabbing of South Korean opposition leader Lee Jae-myung stirs fears ahead of elections.
  • Indo-Pacific
    How Washington’s Budget Fights Are Affecting Three Critical Pacific Island States
    Washington is in the process of concluding new agreements with the three Freely Associated States (FAS): the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau.
  • United States
    Congress Can Help Make Housing Affordable—It Just Has to Act
    The Barrister Apartments in downtown Cincinnati, slated to open early next year, are a housing policy success story. Financed with federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits, it is the first investment in affordable housing in the city’s central business district in more than two decades.   The project involves rehabilitating two vacant office buildings into rental apartments for service workers making no more than 60 percent of the area median income. Not only will residents have shorter commutes to work — saving time and transportation costs and cutting down on emissions — they’ll also save on rent, freeing up money for other important priorities, such as food, education or a down payment on a home.  As important as the Barrister Apartments will be for downtown Cincinnati and the families who will live there, it unfortunately accounts for only a tiny portion of the estimated 270,000 affordable apartments needed to serve Ohio’s most vulnerable families.  Ohio, like the rest of the nation, is facing an affordable housing crisis. It is estimated that there is a housing production gap of 3.8 million units nationwide and that nearly half of all renter households are considered “cost burdened,” meaning they spend more than 30 percent of income on rent. The production of new housing is on the decline, with inflation, rising interest rates, supply chain difficulties and elevated construction costs among the factors slowing down the construction of badly needed housing. The lack of housing construction is impacting not just renters who are paying more and more for fewer and fewer available units, but also first-time homebuyers seeking to find a foothold in the real estate market.  The country needs a thoughtful, persistent and renewed commitment to affordable housing production programs. The good news is that there is considerable bipartisan support in Congress to act.   The first step should be to expand the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit. Since its creation in 1986, the housing credit has financed nearly all affordable rental housing built in this country —3.7 million units of affordable housing, serving more than 8 million low-income households. Homes financed with housing credits, like Cincinnati’s Barrister Apartments, are generally required to be affordable to families earning less than 60 percent of the area median family income; in reality, they often serve Americans who are even less well-off. And the tax credit requires these properties stay affordable to low-income families for at least 30 years.  In early May, a bipartisan coalition of senators and representatives introduced the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act, with more than two dozen provisions to enhance and improve the housing credit. The bill would help to finance nearly 2 million additional affordable homes over the next decade, principally through provisions that would increase the supply of the credits while also making the credits easier to use alongside tax exempt bonds issued by states and municipalities. Congress temporarily increased the supply of the credits in 2018, but that legislative increase expired at the end of 2021. Without any action from Congress, much-needed affordable housing units that would have been built will not be, worsening the existing crisis.   Second, Congress should enact the Neighborhood Homes Investment Act, which would support the development and rehabilitation of single-family homes for homeownership in distressed urban and rural communities with low home values. In these communities, construction costs for new homes exceed the price at which the home can be sold, and existing homeowners struggle to find financing for home repairs. The proposed tax credit would mobilize private investment to fill the gap between development or rehabilitation costs and the value of the home.   This bill also has strong bipartisan support in both the House and the Senate. It holds promise for first-time homebuyers and community revitalization. This legislation is estimated to produce some 500,000 new homes over the next decade while simultaneously restoring vacant land to productive use, creating thousands of construction jobs, lifting the assets of all homeowners in the community and expanding the tax base for local governments.  Fixing the chronic shortage of affordable and available housing for low-income renters and first-time homebuyers requires immediate intervention and long-term commitment. If we fail to act, thousands more families, seniors, people with disabilities, formerly homeless veterans and low-wage workers across America will struggle to find a safe place to sleep at night. And countless families will be denied the opportunity to build wealth through homeownership.   Let’s work together as Republicans and Democrats to help build desperately needed housing across this country, so that families can attain an affordable home and build a pathway toward a more prosperous future.  
  • United States
    Election 2024: Election 2024 Will Decide Who Controls Congress
    Every Friday, I look at what the presidential contenders are saying about foreign policy. This week: The 2024 election will decide whether the next president will face a friendly or a hostile Congress. 
  • Climate Change
    Defunding Climate Action: What’s at Stake in GOP Cuts to International Aid
    Under Republican leadership, the House of Representatives is doubling down on their efforts to slash U.S. funding for gender equality initiatives—and climate justice hangs in the balance.  
  • U.S. Congress
    U.S. House Republican Speaker Battle, With Christopher M. Tuttle
    Christopher M. Tuttle, a senior fellow and director of the Renewing America Initiative at CFR, sits down with James M. Lindsay to discuss the efforts of U.S. House Republicans to elect a new speaker of the House. This episode is part of the Council on Foreign Relations, Diamonstein-Spielvogel Project on the Future of Democracy
  • Intelligence
    Congressional Oversight of U.S. Intelligence: Balancing Capabilities and Accountability
    Bipartisan leadership of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Chairman Mike Turner (R) and Ranking Member Jim Himes (D), discuss the work of the committee in maintaining U.S. strategic advantage in intelligence, as well as ensuring adherence to the democratic values of accountability and transparency.
  • Ukraine
    100 Conservative Leaders Press Support for Ukraine
    Despite some reports that conservatives in the United States favor abandoning Ukraine, 100 conservative leaders just published an open letter of support.
  • Women and Foreign Policy Program
    The TikTok Trap
    TikTok is an easy scapegoat, but the lack of tech regulation and data protection is the underlying cause of our collective anxiety in the digital age.