congressional-affairs

Three Men Sentenced in 2015 Killing of Intern for Rob Portman
Matthew Shlonsky was caught in crossfire shooting

Three men who pleaded guilty to killing Matthew Shlonsky were sentenced in D.C. Superior Court on Monday. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

The three men who pleaded guilty to the 2015 killing of 23-year-old Matthew Shlonsky, a former Sen. Rob Portman intern, were sentenced in D.C. Superior Court on Monday.

Andre Dudley, 22, Marcus King, 22, and Christopher Proctor, 28, each were sentenced for single counts of voluntary manslaughter while armed and two counts each of assault with a dangerous weapon. The sentences carry 18.5 years, 15-20 years and 12-14 years, respectively.

Minnesota 5th District Candidates Sidestep Ellison Allegations
Democratic primary in the state is Tuesday

Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., who is running for state attorney general, has been accused of abuse by a former girlfriend. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Three top Democrats running to succeed Rep. Keith Ellison in Minnesota’s 5th District responded cautiously Monday to allegations that he abused a former girlfriend in 2016.

The candidates did not say whether they believed the allegations against the six-term Democratic lawmaker, who has denied that the long-term relationship included physical abuse. They also did not call for him to resign or drop out of his current race for state attorney general. 

Goodlatte’s Son Says Father’s ‘Political Grandstanding’ Ruined Strzok’s Career
Bobby Goodlatte calls hearing over Strzok’s text messages ‘a low point for Congress’

House Judiciary Chairman Robert W. Goodlatte, R-Va., conducts a committee markup of the so-called POLICE Act of 2017 in May. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Judiciary Chairman Robert W. Goodlatte’s son on Monday criticized the firing of former FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok, blaming his father’s “political grandstanding.”

Bobby Goodlatte tweeted that Strzok was “a patriot” and called the joint hearing for Stzrok that his father chaired last month a “low point for Congress.”

House GOP Appropriators Facing Steep Turnover in 116th Congress
Both parties have endured upheaval in wave elections in the past

Two senior House GOP appropriators,  John Culberson, R-Texas, left, and Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J., personify the challenged facing the Appropriations panel heading into the 2018 midterms. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A Democratic “wave” this November, should one materialize, could result in the departure of as many as five senior House Republican appropriators, which would mark the biggest wipeout of major players from one side of the dais in 26 years.

Three subcommittee “cardinals” are facing tough re-election fights this November: Commerce-Justice-Science Chairman John Culberson and Military Construction-VA Chairman John Carter, both of Texas, and Homeland Security Chairman Kevin Yoder of Kansas.

Rep. David Cicilline’s Sister Let Off Hook on ‘Live PD’
Some viewers say she caught a break because of political connections

Officer Matt Moretti administers a field sobriety test to Susan Cicilline-Buonanno, sister of Rhode Island Democratic Rep. David Cicilline, during Friday’s broadcast of “Live PD.” (A&E)

A local Rhode Island police officer let Rep. David Cicilline’s sister, Susan Cicilline-Buonanno, go home without any troubles after pulling her over and administering a sobriety test — on television.

The encounter was broadcast on A&E’s “Live PD,” a program that follows roughly six police officers from around the country as they feed delayed video to the show.

Road Ahead: Senate Returning to DC for the Ides of August
Floor agenda will look familiar: judicial nominations and appropriation bills

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I.,left, jokes with Sen. Jim Risch, R-Idaho, as he walks down the Senate steps on Aug. 1 after the chamber’s last vote of the week. Risch was posing for photos with interns on the steps. Senators return Wednesday from their truncated district work period. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Thank goodness the Senate has “manufactured weather.”

That’s what Carrier called the system that was first installed to cool the chamber in the early 20th century. The modern air conditioning will be in full use this week as the Senate returns for a rare mid-August session.

Ethics Committee Orders Markwayne Mullin to Pay Back $40,000
Oklahoma Republican instructed to pay back family business

Rep. Markwayne Mullin, R-Okla., must pay back income received from his family business following a House Ethics investigation. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The House Ethics Committee has called for Rep. Markwayne Mullin to return $40,000 to his family business, Mullin West, following a review that concluded the money was paid out to him in a manner that is out of compliance with House rules and the committee’s recommendations.

The report released Friday by the House Ethics panel determined that Mullin made a “good faith” effort to seek informal guidance on issues related to his family businesses, but he didn’t take action on the guidance he received. The committee determined that an accounting error led Mullin to “inadvertently fail to fully follow part of the Committee’s advice,” according to the report.

Audio Catches Cohen in Blackburn Jump-Off-a-Bridge Bind
#lordyihopetherearetapes

Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., participates in a press conference on medical cannabis research reform on Thursday, April 26, 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Audio of Tennessee Democratic Rep. Steve Cohencaught him saying he wished President Donald Trump would tell Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn to jump off a bridge.

The audio obtained by HuffPost was of Cohen at a community prayer breakfast in Memphis supporting former Gov. Phil Bredesen, who is running for Senate against Blackburn.

Snapshot: Chris Collins’ Finances Reviewed
Health technology and family ties a cornerstone in Collins’ wealth

Rep. Chris Collins, R-N.Y., has an investment portfolio heavy on health technology. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

New York Republican Rep. Chris Collins surrendered to the FBI on Wednesday over criminal insider trading charges.

A review of the three-term congressman’s financial disclosures shows the extent of his personal wealth. Collins ranked 13th among House and Senate colleagues in the most recent Roll Call Wealth of Congress index, a ranking of reported assets and liabilities. 

Primary Elections? Sure, We Got ’Em
August might be a sleepy time for some, but not for the midterms

These folks, Public Advocate of the U.S. Inc, cannot wait for the Senate to come back and get to its hearing on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. On Wednesday, they hosted a live performance by the “Kavanaugh Singers” in front of the high court to promote the judge’s confirmation. The group sang “Confirm Brett” to the tune of Mary Poppins’ “Chim Chim Che-ree.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The spectacle of politics and how it fits, or doesn’t, into the nation’s culture. Subscribe to our newsletter here.

August might be a sleepy time for legislation, the Senate’s capital busy-work period notwithstanding (See The Kicker below). But this is a midterm election year, and we are still in the thick of primary season.