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Podcast: U.S, Mexico and Canada Start Work on the Trade Deal That Trump Put at Center of His Campaign
The Week Ahead, Episode 66

President Donald Trump arrives for a rally on June 21, 2017 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Trump spoke about renegotiating NAFTA and building a border wall that would produce solar power during the rally. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

 

Vernon Ehlers, Former Longtime Michigan Congressman, Dies at 83
Ehlers was known as champion of the Great Lakes and science education

As a congressman from Michigan, Vernon Ehlers used his physics background to advance environmental and STEM legislation for nearly two decades. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

The first research physicist ever elected to Congress, Vernon J. Ehlers was known for his legislative work to bolster scientific research and education, raise fuel economy standards, and protect clean air and water.

Ehlers, who represented Western Michigan in Congress for nearly two decades, died Tuesday at the age of 83. His death was confirmed by the Zaagman Memorial Chapel in Grand Rapids, which did not immediately indicate the cause of death, The Detroit News reported.

Trump Disbands Advisory Councils as CEOs Flee
Merck, Under Armor and Intel chief executives departed earlier this week

President Donald Trump has decided to shut down two White House advisory councils.(Win McNamee/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump announced Wednesday he is disbanding two White House advisory councils following the resignation of several members.

That came after chief executives for Merck, Under Armor and Intel announced they all would be leaving the President’s American Manufacturing Council over Trump’s response to the violence that broke out shortly before a rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Extremist groups, including neo-Nazis and the Klu Klux Klan, had gathered to oppose plans to remove a statute of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee. 

Brooks Declines to Endorse Moore or Strange After Conceding Defeat
Congressman announces he will seek re-election after finishing third in Senate race

Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., finished third after receiving 20 percent of the vote in the Republican primary Tuesday for Alabama's special election to the U.S. Senate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Mo Brooks is moving on after a distant third-place finish in the Republican primary on Tuesday for the Alabama Senate special election.

And Brooks is doing that without endorsing either of the two men, Judge Roy Moore and appointed Sen. Luther Strange, who beat him to enter a runoff on Sept. 26 to decide the GOP nominee.

Trump Goes Back to Flogging McConnell Over Health Care
President’s attack Thursday afternoon comes after taking more encouraging tone

President Donald Trump has repeatedly attacked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for the GOP’s recent failure to pass health care legislation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 4:27 p.m. | President Donald Trump took on a more threatening tone toward Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Thursday after a meandering series of messages earlier in the day.

The president started the day with a tweet that criticized the Kentucky Republican for a second day for failing to pass a health care bill, before offering an olive branch of encouragement by lunchtime.

Zack Barth ‘Not Living in Fear’ After Congressional Baseball Shooting
Hill staffer talks about his shooter, his faith and life afterward

Zack Barth, an aide to Texas Rep. Roger Williams, was wounded in the leg during the shooting at the Republicans’ baseball practice in Arlington, Va., on June 14. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Zack Barth was never supposed to be dodging bullets in the outfield.

His job was to feed fly balls back to the infield for Republican lawmakers during an early-morning baseball practice ahead of the annual Congressional Baseball Game against the Democrats.

John Lewis Staffer Under Ethics Inquiry
Chief of staff may have been improperly paid as campaign treasurer

Michael Collins, left, chief of staff for Georgia Rep. John Lewis, center, is under the House Ethics Committee scrutiny. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A probe into whether a longtime aide for Rep. John Lewis was inappropriately paid as his campaign treasurer while also serving as chief of staff has been taken up by the House Ethics Committee, the panel announced Wednesday.

An inquiry by the Office of Congressional Ethics found the Georgia Democrat’s chief of staff, Michael Collins, also made slightly more in outside income as a senior staffer than House rules allow.

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

GOP candidate for Senate Sen. Luther Strange, R-Ala., speaks with attendees after the U.S. Senate candidate forum held by the Shelby County Republican Party in Pelham, Ala., on Friday, Aug. 4, 2017. Sen. Strange is running in the special election to fill the seat vacated by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

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.

GOP Members Face Tough Town Halls at Home
Man tells LaMalfa ‘May you die in pain’ over health care vote

Republican Rep. Mark Meadows  faced criticism at a town hall in his North Carolina district for his leadership on the House health care repeal and replace plan. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

While August recess gives members of Congress a chance to escape Washington, D.C., and spend time in their districts, it also means answering to their constituents.

As town halls replace committee meetings during this last stretch of summer, Republican congressmen find themselves facing increasingly critical and at times raucous crowds of voters.

Podcast: Congress' Perfect Fall Storm
Budget Tracker Extra, Episode 28

Chairman Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., takes his seat for the Senate Budget Committee to order for the hearing with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on the President’s budget proposals on Tuesday, June 13, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Lawmakers scurried out of Washington for the August recess but what they left undone, says CQ budget reporter Kellie Mejdrich, will not only complicate their lives politically when they return in September but test the nation’s fiscal obligations.