Daily Briefing: Congress' big week

Washington is racing against a Dec. 16 deadline to fund the federal government and avoid a partial shutdown. Also in the news: The Supreme Court will revisit a major immigration case today. Iran and the United States face off in the World Cup in Qatar tonight.

🙋🏼‍♀️ I'm Nicole Fallert, Daily Briefing author. How will you be celebrating this Giving Tuesday?

Here's Tuesday's top headlines.

What this week means for Congress

Washington is full-speed ahead as the House and Senate return this week from Thanksgiving break. They are grappling with a laundry list of priorities: a same-sex marriage act, electoral reform, military spending as well as government funding.

One thing to know: The current lame-duck session will extend well into December, possibly past Christmas – and potentially into the next Congress when Republicans will take over the House from Democrats.

  • What would cause a shutdown: A current continuing resolution – a temporary spending bill allowing the federal government to keep operating while Congress works on a full-year funding bill – expires Dec. 16. Congress must pass legislation to keep the government operating past that date or risk a government shutdown.

  • Same-sex marriage in focusThe Respect for Marriage Act could pass this week and would codify a 2015 Supreme Court ruling that made same-sex marriage legal nationwide. The Senate act would ensure it stays the law of the land.

  • Ukraine, gun safety and moreOne of the big sticking points with government funding is from House Republicans who want to tighten the purse strings on Ukraine aid. Meanwhile, President Joe Biden last week called again for an assault weapons ban.

Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) talks to reporters in the Senate subway on her way to a procedural vote on the Respect For Marriage Act, on which she was the lead Republican sponsor, at the U.S. Capitol on November 28, 2022 in Washington, DC.
Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) talks to reporters in the Senate subway on her way to a procedural vote on the Respect For Marriage Act, on which she was the lead Republican sponsor, at the U.S. Capitol on November 28, 2022 in Washington, DC.

Boil notice for over 2 million Houston area residents

Officials say a boil order notice could end early Tuesday for more than 2 million people in the Houston area after a power outage caused low water pressure at a water purification plant. The advisory — which means water must be boiled before it’s used for cooking, bathing or drinking — also prompted schools in the Houston area to close Monday. Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner says the city believes the water is safe but a boil order was required because of the drop Sunday in water pressure. Turner said two electrical transformers failed, causing power outages at the water plant. Read more

John Beezley, of Bonham, buys cases of water after learning that a boil water notice was issued for the entire city of Houston on Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022, at Walmart on S. Post Oak Road in Houston. Beezley just arrived in town with his wife, who is undergoing treatment starting tomorrow at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, where they are staying in a camping trailer.
John Beezley, of Bonham, buys cases of water after learning that a boil water notice was issued for the entire city of Houston on Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022, at Walmart on S. Post Oak Road in Houston. Beezley just arrived in town with his wife, who is undergoing treatment starting tomorrow at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, where they are staying in a camping trailer.

More news to know now

🌤 What's the weather this week? Check your local forecast here.

Supreme Court to hear key immigration case

Four months after the Supreme Court temporarily blocked President Joe Biden's power to prioritize certain immigrants in the country illegally for deportation, the justices will revisit the issue Tuesday in the first major immigration case of the term. The Biden administration wants to focus enforcement on immigrants who pose a threat to national security or public safety. But that approach, which officials announced last year, represents a departure from the Trump administration's more sweeping tactics. And two conservatives states, Texas and Louisiana, sued over the strategy. Read more

  • Our explainer on the case: The Biden administration doesn't have the power, they say, to pick and choose which of those immigrants to target for enforcement.

  • More from the courtSupreme Court counsel pushes back on inquiry from Democratic lawmakers over report of 2014 leak.

An immigrant considered a threat to public safety and national security waits to be processed by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents at the ICE Metropolitan Detention Center in Los Angeles, after an early morning raid, June 6, 2022. The Supreme Court is taking up a dispute over a blocked Biden administration policy that would prioritize the deportation of people in the country illegally who pose the greatest public safety risk.
An immigrant considered a threat to public safety and national security waits to be processed by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents at the ICE Metropolitan Detention Center in Los Angeles, after an early morning raid, June 6, 2022. The Supreme Court is taking up a dispute over a blocked Biden administration policy that would prioritize the deportation of people in the country illegally who pose the greatest public safety risk.

China gripped by large-scale protests over Xi's COVID-19 policies

The Biden administration offered support Monday for peaceful protesters in China who spilled into the streets over the weekend to demonstrate against Beijing’s “zero COVID” strategy for containing the deadly pandemic. Crowds angered by the severe restrictions called for President Xi Jinping to resign in the biggest show of public dissent in decades. With police out in force, there was no word of new protests in Beijing, Shanghai or other major cities as of Tuesday, the Associated Press reported. At the White House on Monday, National Security Council spokesman John Kirby declared the administration's support for the protesters. Read more

  • Photos: Public anger rises China as protests take to streets.

Policemen pin down and arrest a protester during a protest on a street in Shanghai, China, on Nov. 27, 2022,
Policemen pin down and arrest a protester during a protest on a street in Shanghai, China, on Nov. 27, 2022,

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Protests at the center of Iran-US World Cup match

The United States is up against Iran tonight in a high-stakes face-off in Qatar. The clash comes with pressure: the USMNT’s match against Iran is effectively a one-game playoff to get into the Round of 16. There's no scenario in which two points is enough to get out of the four-team Group B (which also includes England and Wales) in the round-robin format used at the World Cup. That means a loss to Iran ends the USMNT’s tournament. And in the middle of all of this is tension that has carried over from protests that have swept Iran following the death of Mahsa Amini, who had been arrested by the morality police for allegedly violating the conservative dress code. Read more from our sports analyst Nancy Armour.

A woman holds up a sign reading Mahsa Amini, the name of a woman who died while in police custody in Iran at the age of 22, during a protest after the World Cup Group B soccer match between Wales and Iran.
A woman holds up a sign reading Mahsa Amini, the name of a woman who died while in police custody in Iran at the age of 22, during a protest after the World Cup Group B soccer match between Wales and Iran.

📷 Photo of the day: Gotham Awards 2022 📷

“Everything Everywhere All at Once” won best feature at the 32nd Gotham Awards on Monday, taking one of the first major prizes of Hollywood’s awards season and boosting the Oscar hopes of the anarchic indie hit of the year. Most outstanding lead actor went to “Till” star Danielle Deadwyler. Supporting actor went to “Everything Everywhere” costar Ke Huy Quan. Special honorees included Adam Sandler and Michelle Williams. Click here to see more photos from the 2022 Gotham Awards.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 28: (L-R) Daniel Scheinert, Ke Huy Quan, Stephanie Hsu, Jonathan Wang and Daniel Kwan pose in the GreenSlate Greenroom at The 2022 Gotham Awards at Cipriani Wall Street on November 28, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for GreenSlate) ORG XMIT: 775903484 ORIG FILE ID: 1445322215
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 28: (L-R) Daniel Scheinert, Ke Huy Quan, Stephanie Hsu, Jonathan Wang and Daniel Kwan pose in the GreenSlate Greenroom at The 2022 Gotham Awards at Cipriani Wall Street on November 28, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for GreenSlate) ORG XMIT: 775903484 ORIG FILE ID: 1445322215

One more thing

Depictions of Willow, bottom left, and Commander, the Biden family's cat and dog, are part of decorations in the Vermeil Room of the White House during a press preview of holiday decorations at the White House, Monday, Nov. 28, 2022, in Washington.
Depictions of Willow, bottom left, and Commander, the Biden family's cat and dog, are part of decorations in the Vermeil Room of the White House during a press preview of holiday decorations at the White House, Monday, Nov. 28, 2022, in Washington.

Nicole Fallert is a newsletter writer at USA TODAY, sign up for the email here. Want to send Nicole a note, shoot her an email at NFallert@usatoday.com or follow along with her musings on Twitter. Support journalism like this – subscribe to USA TODAY here.

Associated Press contributed reporting.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Congress, China, Mauna Loa, Houston, World Cup, Iran: Daily Briefing