Appropriations

Whip List: Obamacare Rollback Vote Nears Breaking Point
A handful more GOP opponents would doom measure

House Appropriations Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen, left, said he is opposed to the current bill. Majority Whip Steve Scalise and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy will need to whip more votes. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Enough Republicans appeared on the verge of voting against the House health care overhaul to require frantic lobbying and send House Speaker to the White House as floor debate got underway Friday.

At least 20 House Republicans had already signaled opposition since the end of a Thursday evening huddle with top Trump administration officials in which Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney delivered an ultimatum, saying President Donald Trump was done negotiating on repealing and replacing the 2010 health care law.

The Latest on Republican Health Care Bill Vote
House Speaker Paul Ryan meeting with Trump at The White House

Rep. Rod Blum, R-Iowa,a member of the House Freedom Caucus, is interviewed after a meeting at the White House Thursday over the Republican health care bill. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

All eyes are on the House of Representatives on Friday as Republican leaders try to push through their plan to partially repeal and replace the 2010 health care law, the first major test of one of Donald Trump's biggest campaign promises.

After scuttling plans for a vote Thursday — the seventh anniversary of the passage of 2010 Affordable Care Act — House leaders negotiated deep into the night and emerged with a promise of a Friday vote. It’s unclear whether enough conservative hardliners and moderates who have so far stood in opposition to the bill will come around in time.

Pentagon Leaders Say Soft Power Central to ISIS Strategy
Mattis, Dunford pitch appropriators on supplemental funding proposal

Defense Secretary James Mattis says soft power is key to defeating terrorists abroad. ( Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Pentagon leaders on Wednesday stressed the importance of diplomacy in the fight against the Islamic State but sidestepped questions from Senate appropriators about the Trump administration’s proposed 29 percent cut to the State Department and other foreign operations accounts in fiscal 2018.

Defense Secretary James Mattis and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford pitched lawmakers on the military’s $30 billion request for supplemental funding for fiscal 2017, as well as the planned $54 billion boost to defense accounts proposed for next year, arguing that military readiness has been depleted after 16 years of war.

Chances of Change to Defense Spending Caps Falling
Troubles confront Trump budget proposal to lift defense limits

Rep. Harold Rogers, R-Ky., a veteran appropriator, is dubious of the proposed changes to the budget.. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Republican appropriators appear increasingly skeptical about President Donald Trump's eye-popping proposed changes to fiscal 2017 spending levels, including nondefense spending cuts, a proposed $30 billion defense supplemental and a $3 billion border security supplemental.

Lawmakers said in interviews that it looks increasingly unlikely that GOP lawmakers will propose — let alone pass — the needed changes to budget law to allow for Trump’s request to increase the fiscal 2017 defense cap by $25 billion and reduce the nondefense cap by $15 billion. The reductions in nondefense, which were not specified by Trump, likely would require some major, nearly immediate cuts in federal agency budgets.

NSC Official: Trump May Abandon Goal of Nuclear Disarmament

A United States Trident II (D-5) missile underwater launch. (Wikimedia Commons/Public domain)

This story originally appeared on CQ.com.

A senior administration official on Tuesday said the White House will review whether to back away from longstanding U.S. policy of nuclear disarmament while embarking on the process of updating the country’s nuclear arsenal.

$30 Billion Defense Supplemental Duplicates Spending
Pentagon might not need full request from Trump

Trump, left, wants Congress to pass a supplemental spending bill for defense programs that the Pentagon might not need. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Pentagon may not really need the full $30 billion President Donald Trump requested last week for the current fiscal year.

That’s because Congress is already poised to provide a significant portion of the $30 billion in the fiscal 2017 Defense spending bill that the House passed on March 8. So that portion of the supplemental is redundant, congressional and Pentagon officials confirmed to CQ Roll Call.

Massive Eisenhower Memorial Could Break Ground as Early as September
Congressional support among the last barriers after 20-year dispute

An artist’s rendition of the vista from the Eisenhower Memorial looking toward the Capitol. (Courtesy Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial Commission)

Construction could begin as early as September on a proposed memorial for President Dwight D. Eisenhower that has been mired in controversy for almost 20 years. 

That’s according to the Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial Commission and the chairman of the House committee that oversees the funding for the project.

Trump Defense Boost Would Mean Big Gains for Some States
Democrats likely to hold line for parity with nondefense programs

Brian Schatz, whose state of Hawaii is the No. 3 recipient of per-capita defense spending, says there must be parity in domestic spending to go with any boost to national security programs. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A request from the Trump administration for a double-digit increase in defense spending could be largely decided by lawmakers whose states are far from equal players when it comes to the benefits of a bigger military budget.

That’s long been the case, as geographic, historic and strategic differences across the country result in more of an economic boost in certain states. But the differences are even more starkly displayed in a new Pew Charitable Trusts analysis that shows the funding split across all 50 states and the District of Columbia on a per-capita basis.

Ep. 9: Why Trump’s Budget Could Spark Political Paralysis
 

Despite the Republicans controlling Congress and the White House, there is no GOP consensus, says CQ Roll Call’s Budget tracker editor David Lerman. That was underscored with some Republicans’ visceral objections to President Trump’s budget requests that could set off a crisis in funding the government, adds Lerman.

Flashback Friday: Garland Heads to the Senate
One year later, a different nominee is up for confirmation

Garland, right, made his first visit with senators, including Reid, left, one year ago today. Republicans never granted the Supreme Court nominee a hearing. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

On St. Patrick’s Day in 2016, Supreme Court nominee Judge Merrick G. Garland made his first visit to the Senate. But the luck of the Irish wasn’t enough to move his nomination forward. One year later, a different judge is facing a confirmation hearing.

Garland, the chief judge for the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, made his way to the Senate one year ago today, the day after President Barack Obama nominated him to fill the vacancy left by the late Justice Antonin Scalia.