Jason Dick

Podcast: Alabama's Strange Election Turns Anti-McConnell But Pro-Trump
The Big Story, Episode 66

CQ Roll Call's senior political reporter Bridget Bowman says Republicans competing for Jeff Sessions’ Senate seat in Alabama are striving to tell primary voters just how much they support Donald Trump and, perhaps surprisingly, are using Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as a punching bag.

Some Notable Confirmations, Honors as Senate Wraps Up for Recess
Chamber approves Kay Bailey Hutchison, Mark Green, honors Bob Dole

The Senate wrapped up its summer session Thursday after confirming a large bloc of executive nominees, including a former senator and former House member. It also approved awarding the Congressional Gold Medal to former Sen. Bob Dole, the 94-year-old Kansas Republican whose long service included stints at majority and minority leader and who has continued to advocate causes ranging from the rights of the disabled to veterans issues. 

Among the 69 nominees confirmed in multiple en bloc packages, by voice vote and by unanimous consent, was a former member of the club, Texas GOP Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, President Donald Trump’s pick for U.S. ambassador to NATO. Her selection comes at a time when relations with NATO have frayed in light of Trump’s criticism of fellow NATO signatories and his icy relationship with top NATO leaders such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel. 

John McCain Returns With a Strong Message
Ailing senator chides both sides after delivering GOP win

By JASON DICK and DAVID HAWKINGS

Years from now, when the history of the modern Congress is written, John McCain’s address to the Senate on July 25, 2017, is likely to stand among the defining summations of the era.

Ready or Not, McConnell Says Senate Voting on Health Care Tuesday

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell confirmed on Monday that the chamber would hold a procedural vote on Tuesday on a House-passed measure to overhaul the U.S. health insurance system.

“Seven years ago, Democrats forced Obamacare on the American people. It was supposed to lower health costs, but, of course, they skyrocketed. It was supposed to provide more health options, but they plummeted,” the Kentucky Republican said during his opening remarks. “I will vote yes on the motion to proceed. And I would urge all of our colleagues to do the same.”

Ralph Regula, Avuncular Appropriator from Ohio, Dies at 92
Canton-area congressman unapologetic for pushing bipartisanship

Former Rep. Ralph Regula, a moderate Republican from Ohio known for his deal-cutting acumen, avuncular manner and skills as an appropriator, died July 19. He was 92.

Born in Beach City, Ohio on Dec. 3, 1924, Regula was first elected to Congress in 1972 after stints in the Ohio state House and Senate. Between then and his retirement after the 2008 elections, he embodied a middle-of-the-road Midwestern approach to politics that valued working across the aisle and taking care of the folks back home.

In Memoriam: Bob Wolff, Broadcast Legend and Voice of Washington Senators
TV pioneer interviewed some of sports’ greatest figures

It was the understatement of Bob Wolff’s career, under the circumstances.

“I do get very verbose,” Wolff said on April 26, 2013, the day the legendary sportscaster donated decades’ worth of his interviews with sports’ greatest figures to the Library of Congress

Latest GOP Leadership Health Care Plan Bleeding Support
Some senators have doubts about repeal-only proposal

Senate Republican leaders continued to push their strategy to repeal the 2010 health care law, leaning on support from the White House even as their rank and file continued to express doubts about such an approach. 

“I regret that the effort to repeal and immediately replace the failures of Obamacare will not be successful,” Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in his opening remarks on the Senate floor Tuesday morning. The Kentucky Republican wants his colleagues to vote soon on a procedural motion to get to the House-passed health care legislation so he can offer an amendment modeled on legislation Congress passed in 2015 to repeal the 2010 law.

Podcast: Short Recess, Long on Goals
The Big Story, Episode 62

The Senate will stick around Washington a little longer in August, shortening its recess to focus on an ambitious agenda. The list of things to do could include confirming the new FBI director. CQ Roll Call Senior Senate Reporter Niels Lesniewski and Leadership Editor Jason Dick break down what is doable.

Podcast: What We Learned From 2017’s Special Elections
The Big Story, Episode 59

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At AFI Docs, Timely Topics

AFI Docs, the annual documentary film festival put on by the American Film Institute in Washington, has to plan months ahead to get its slate of nonfiction movies.

Nevertheless, festival organizers seem to have a knack for finding films that have political currency.

House Cancels Votes in Wake of Shooting
Hearings, events across Capitol also postponed

The House canceled floor votes on Wednesday in the wake of the shooting at the Republican baseball practice in Alexandria, Va. 

Several hearings across the Capitol, including an Appropriations subcommittee that was due to examine the budget of the Capitol Police, were canceled or postponed. 

Schumer Passes on Chance to Star With Kate Mara
Capitol Hill gets cameo in new film ‘Megan Leavey’

The old saying that the most dangerous place in Washington is between Sen. Charles E. Schumer and a camera? New evidence suggests otherwise.

“I didn’t want to ruin the film,” the New York Democrat said about turning down an offer to play himself in the new movie “Megan Leavey.”

Podcast: Senate Picks Up Pace on GOP Health Care Bill
The Big Story, Episode 57

President Donald Trump with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky. (CQ Roll Call/File Photo)

After a series of fits and starts, the Senate is starting to clear a path so it can consider legislation dismantling Obamacare, say CQ Roll Call’s Jason Dick and Ed Pesce. They review how the Senate got there and what’s next.

Lessons of a "Shattered" Campaign
The Big Story, Episode 55

Democrats heading into the 2018 mid-term elections should pay attention to the party hubris that likely contributed to Hillary Clinton’s presidential loss, says Jonathan Allen, CQ Roll Call columnist and co-author of the best-selling book “Shattered."

Show Notes:

Having Fun With the Health Care Bill Holdup
Hoyer needles McCarthy about delay in sending House bill to Senate

House Minority Leader Steny H. Hoyer had a little fun with his Republican colleagues’ delay in transmitting their health care overhaul legislation to the Senate.

“You can imagine my shock, chagrin and surprise when I learned yesterday that bill has not gone to the Senate. Apparently it’s gone from one chair to the other chair in the desks before me,” the Maryland Democrat needled House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., in their colloquy on the floor Friday. He asked McCarthy if there would need to be another vote on the bill and when it will be sent to the Senate.

Special Elections in the Time of Trump
The Big Story, Episode 54

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Mitch McConnell, Still Playing the Long Game
Trump revelations, FBI director search, don't rattle majority leader

BY JASON DICK AND JOE WILLIAMS, CQ ROLL CALL

It’s difficult to get Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to play anything but “The Long Game,” the Kentucky Republican’s political strategy, encapsulated by his 2016 memoir of the same name.

The Art of the Spending Deal
The Big Story, Episode 52

Congress struck a deal on a long-overdue spending bill, and all hell broke loose. CQ Roll Call’s Jason Dick, Niels Lesniewski and Walter Shapiro discuss how Washington’s dynamics prevent even a small victory party from breaking out.

With End in Sight for Omnibus, Dissonance Takes Over
Sore feelings take hold even as deal heads to passage

On a day Congress could have spent singing the praises of a bipartisan agreement to wrap up the long-overdue fiscal 2017 spending process, seemingly everyone — from Capitol Hill to the White House — found a way to hit dissonant notes. 

“They’re walking around acting like they pulled a fast one on the president, and I just won’t stand for it,” Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said Tuesday afternoon at the third of three press briefings he conducted in a 24-hour period after congressional Democrats started effusively praising the omnibus spending deal as a win for their priorities.