Senators are not saying much about what they will do if the House goes ahead with efforts to squeeze program-expanding provisions into a federal terrorism risk backstop bill.
The House Rules Committee agreed to let H.Res. 849, which provides for the consideration of the Senate amendment to H.R. 2761, the Terrorism Risk Insurance Revision and Extension Act of 2007, go to the House floor, and House leaders want to hold a vote next week.
The act that now authorizes the program, the Terrorism Risk Insurance Extension Act of 2005, is set to expire Dec. 31.
Congress may stay in session until Dec. 21, but it is dealing with a huge backlog of work on must-do issues.
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Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, who is determining how the Senate is handling the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act extension issue has been reacting cautiously to talk about the House action.
A spokesman for Dodd could not get any comment from Dodd Thursday about the House decision to vote on a longer terrorism risk program extension bill.
One insurance industry observer says he believes Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., the most senior Republican on the Senate Banking Committee, “has gone as far as he will go on legislation he opposes in principle, and would not hesitate to go home for Christmas fully aware that the current backstop expires Dec. 31 and no one is in a position to extend it.”