Appropriations: Aside from health care reform, this will be Congress’ main task between now and December, as the Senate has only approved four of the 12 appropriations bills.
Defense spending: Perhaps the most contentious of the spending bills now in play. in July, the House of Representatives passed a $636 billion defense spending bill, cutting additional funding for some programs, like the F-22 fighter jet
Debt limit: Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner said it is “critically important that Congress act” to raise the government’s $12.1 trillion statutory debt limit “as soon as possible.”
Telecom: Many telecom issues have been pushed aside to make way for health care and other pending Democratic priorities, but some things are likely to pass.
Union membership: Since the beginning of the year, the Employee Free Choice Act, which would make it easier for workers to join unions, has been the lobbying focus for organized labor. They’ve met a formidable wall of opposition, led by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.