government shutdown

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.

‘Wacky Omarosa’ Once a Trump Favorite — But No More
President attacks Omarosa Manigault Newman after she releases tapes

Omarosa Manigault Newman, the former director of communications for the White House Public Liaison Office, is on a media blitz promoting her book, which has drawn a Twitter rebuke from President Donald Trump. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images file photo)

Omarosa Manigault Newman is the latest person to earn one of President Donald Trump’s infamous nicknames, as the president attacked his former adviser on Twitter Monday.

“Wacky Omarosa, who got fired 3 times on the Apprentice, now got fired for the last time. She never made it, never will,” Trump tweeted. “She begged me for a job, tears in her eyes, I said Ok. People in the White House hated her. She was vicious, but not smart.”

Democratic Candidates Walk Political Tightrope on Drug Prices
Pharmaceutical industry employs many potential voters in some districts

Making the cost of prescription drugs an issue may be complicated for Democrats running in areas that are big pharmaceutical hubs. (John Moore/Getty Images file photo)

Democrats working to regain control in Congress this fall are making the cost of prescription drugs a centerpiece of the party’s message. The path to a majority, however, runs through some places where the pharmaceutical industry employs a lot of potential voters.

Southern California, New Jersey, and the Philadelphia suburbs are among the areas where Democrats have the strongest chances to turn red House seats blue. Yet since these states are some of the biggest pharmaceutical hubs in the United States — the industry estimates it directly employs 44,000 people in Pennsylvania, 65,000 people in New Jersey, and 131,000 in California — candidates there tread a little more cautiously on the issue of drug prices.

Legal Fight Over DACA Amps Up Pressure on Reluctant Congress
As another court ruling unfolds in Texas, clamor for legislative solution only grows

Dreamers protest outside of the Capitol calling for passage of the Dream Act as Congress works to find a way to end the government shutdown on Sunday evening, Jan. 21, 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Congress could face more pressure to protect “Dreamers” because of court decisions about the future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which allows people who were brought to the United States as undocumented children to live and work here temporarily.

Still, even with the additional pressure from the court rulings, lawmakers are unlikely to pass any legislation in the months preceding the November midterm elections.

Republicans Dismiss 2012 Repeat Ahead of Wisconsin Senate Primary
State Sen. Leah Vukmir faces Kevin Nicholson for GOP nomination

Republicans are battling to take on Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin in Wisconsin. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A costly, divisive primary race with Democrat Tammy Baldwin waiting on the other side may be causing unwanted flashbacks for Republicans in Wisconsin. But so far, they’re not worried. 

State Sen. Leah Vukmir and Kevin Nicholson, a businessman and Marine veteran, will face off in next Tuesday’s GOP primary for the chance to take on the freshman senator. Republicans had hoped to avoid a messy primary similar to 2012, when their nominee emerged battered and broke and ended up losing to Baldwin.

Army Seeks Money Shift as Long-Range Weapons Get Longer
Branch leans into Pentagon’s new National Defense Strategy with $46 million request

Aerial view of the Pentagon building photographed on Sept. 24, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Army has asked Congress to allow it to move $46 million in fiscal 2018 money to its efforts to improve its ability to hit targets at long range.

The money would be spent on a deep strike cannon artillery system, part of the Army’s plans to develop weapons that can strike accurately at far distances. Army planners project that future land battles will be fought at greater distances, beyond 70 kilometers of range for projectiles and hundreds of kilometers via surface-to-surface missiles.

White House’s Mixed Messages to Iran Continue With Sanctions
Economic penalties had been removed under nuclear pact Trump left

U.S. President Donald Trump departs the White House July 31, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Updated 11:14 a.m. | The Trump administration reactivated sanctions Monday on Iran in an attempt to further squeeze its stumbling economy, a tough move that is the latest in a volley of mixed signals from Washington.

“Our actions will continue to limit Iran” from obtaining the resources needed to “support its malign behavior” across the Middle East, a senior administration official said Monday. “We are fully committed to rigorously enforcing our sanctions … to ensure they fully change course.”

Mitch McConnell Is Already Running for Re-Election — In 2020
Formally announced his plans in Kentucky on Saturday

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Saturday that he will seek re-election in 2020. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell proved again this weekend he won’t be caught asleep at the wheel when it comes to his own campaigns in Kentucky.

McConnell formally announced Saturday his plans to seek a seventh term, speaking at a Republican breakfast in western Kentucky ahead of the Fancy Farm picnic, which is the bipartisan political event of the year in the commonwealth.

Trump Tries to Save Reliable GOP House Seat in Ohio
Republican Troy Balderson is in tight race against Democrat Danny O’Connor

President Donald Trump, here in South Carolina in June, was in Ohio Saturday to stump for GOP House candidate Troy Balderson in his tight race. (Sean Rayford/Getty Images file photo)

Updated 20:29 p.m. | President Donald Trump dove headfirst into a House special election Saturday evening, aiming to give Ohio Republican Troy Balderson a final push three days before Election Day.

The race in the suddenly competitive 12th District between the state lawmaker and Franklin County Recorder Danny O’Connor, polls say, is now essentially tied. Trump and Republican leaders are eager to keep the seat in GOP hands after the retirement of former Republican Rep. Pat Tiberi earlier this year.

More Than Just ‘Regular Order’ at Stake in Senate Spending Push
Most vulnerable Senators now have material to take on the campaign trail

Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Senate approval of a $154.2 billion, four-bill spending package this week wasn’t just a banner moment for bipartisanship and the open debate and amendment process senators have been promoting.

There’s also a more practical reason: giving the most vulnerable senators on both sides of the aisle something to crow about on the campaign trail.