House Republicans

Bipartisan swipes from McCarthy at House Judiciary and Senate Intelligence chairmen
House minority questions Nadler qualifications, says Burr’s panel ‘got it wrong’ on Trump Jr.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., on Thursday questioned Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler’s ability to hold the gavel. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy on Thursday continued his calls for Congress to “move on” from the special counsel investigation, he swiped at House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler and Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard Burr.

The California Republican during his weekly press conference questioned whether Nadler is qualified to hold the Judiciary gavel, saying if he were in charge of the Democratic Caucus he’d haul the chairman in to meet with the House parliamentarian over his “lack of knowledge” about procedure. 

‘Looking in the mirror’: Democrats’ failure to coalesce on spending numbers gives House GOP an opening
House minority shouldn’t be a player in budget talks, but Democrats may need their votes

House Budget Chairman John Yarmuth, D-Ky., center, is concerned that House Democrats are squandering their leverage in budget talks. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Republicans should have virtually no power in the minority, but Democrats’ inability to unify as a caucus around topline fiscal 2020 spending levels has given them some unexpected leverage. The question now is what they’ll do with it.

President Donald Trump and his acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, don’t want to raise the statutory discretionary spending caps for fiscal 2020, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell wants to reach a bipartisan deal to do just that to avoid a 10 percent cut in spending from fiscal 2019 levels.

7 Republicans voted against naming a post office after the late Rep. Louise Slaughter
One of Slaughter’s known GOP nemeses, New York Rep. Chris Collins, did not vote

Members of Congress, including then-House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer at memorial service for the late New York Rep. Louise Slaughter in the Capitol’s Statuary Hall on April 18, 2018. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Seven Republicans voted against a House resolution Tuesday to rename a post office building in Fairport, New York, after the late Rep. Louise Slaughter and her husband Bob, who is also deceased.

Slaughter, a New York Democrat who was the first woman to chair the House Rules Committee, died last year at the age of 88 after being hospitalized for a fall in the middle of her 16th term in Congress.

House Republicans dig out another procedural tool to pressure Democrats
GOP is planning to file discharge petitions on a late-term abortion bill and the Green New Deal

House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., is planning to file a discharge petition next week in an effort to force a vote on a bill to provide protections for newborns who survive abortions. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Republicans, boosted by some early procedural wins this Congress, are planning to try out another tool available to the minority to put pressure on Democrats — the discharge petition.

Discharge petitions can be filed by any member but are most commonly used by the minority party to highlight legislation the majority refuses to bring to the floor. If a discharge petition gets 218 signatures, the underlying measure can then be brought up for a vote over the objections of leadership.

House passes gender pay gap bill, a top Democratic priority
Most Republicans oppose measure, say there are better ways to get pay parity without lawsuits

Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., has been introducing the Paycheck Fairness Act since 1997 in an effort to help close the gender pay gap. The House on Wednesday passed her bill, one of the new Democratic majority’s top priorities. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Democrats on Wednesday passed another one of their top party priorities, a bill called the Paycheck Fairness Act that is designed to help close the gender pay gap. 

HR 7 passed, 242-187, with only seven Republican votes. Those included New Jersey’s Christopher H. Smith, an original cosponsor of the bill, Florida’s Mario Diaz-Balart, Idaho’s Mike Simpson, New York’s Tom Reed, Texas’ Will Hurd, Pennsylvania’s Brian Fitzpatrick and Illinois’ Rodney Davis. All 235 House Democrats voted for the measure. 

House Democrats show improved response to Republican messaging votes
Democrats easily defeated a Republican motion to recommit Friday to their HR 1 government overhaul

Rep. Max Rose, D-N.Y., center, had voted for several Republican motions to recommit this year but he argued against the one the GOP offered to HR 1 Friday, calling it a “joke.” Rep. Joe Cunningham, D-S.C., right, meanwhile was one of six Democrats who voted with Republicans on that motion. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Democrats seem to have sharpened their response to Republican motions to recommit after the GOP twice bested the new majority using the procedural tool this year.

The improved messaging and whip operations around motions to recommit, or MTRs, since Democrats lost a second one early last week on a priority gun control bill seem to have quelled an immediate desire to overhaul the procedural tool.

House passes anti-hate resolution after days of debate over response to Omar comments
Some Democrats and Republicans wanted a standalone vote to condemn anti-Semitism

Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., attends a House Foreign Affairs hearing on Feb. 13. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 7:51 p.m. | The House on Thursday overwhelmingly — but notably, not unanimously — passed a resolution to condemn anti-Semitism, racism and Islamophobia, ending days of spirited debate over the appropriate response recent comments from Minnesota Democratic freshman Ilhan Omar.

The final vote was 407-23. All of the “no” votes came from Republicans, including their No. 3, Conference Chairwoman Liz Cheney of Wyoming. Cheney was among the first three “no” votes recorded, and several other Republicans seemed to be following her lead.

Democrats delay vote on anti-Semitism resolution to broaden language to include other types of bigotry
Republicans want stronger reprimand for Omar, while progressives feel resolution should be about more than her

Democratic leaders began work on a resolution condemning anti-Semitism in response to recent critical comments about Israel by Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn. But that is now expected to be broadened to condemn all forms of bigotry. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Democrats will not vote on an anti-Semitism resolution Wednesday as they are still refining the language of the measure, with multiple members saying it is likely to be broadened to reject other forms of religious bigotry such as Islamophobia.

The resolution is Democratic leadership’s response to recent comments from Minnesota freshman Ilhan Omar that lawmakers in both parties have said play into anti-Semitic stereotypes. Some Democrats appear to be concerned, however, that the resolution only targets offenses stirred up by Omar’s comments and not other forms of religious bigotry, including attacks Omar herself has faced for being Muslim.

Capitol Ink | In Trump’s Corner

Why 19 Democrats and 109 Republicans voted against the government funding deal
Democratic defections were mostly Hispanic Caucus members, progressives concerned about immigration enforcement

New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez joined 18 other House Democrats and 109 House Republicans in voting against the compromise spending package Thursday night. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

House Democrats were just two votes short Thursday night of being able to clear a fiscal 2019 appropriations package without Republican help, while less than half of the GOP conference voted for the bill to avert another government shutdown.

That dynamic may foreshadow battles ahead as the new House Democratic majority will try to exert its influence over government spending while still having to deal with a Republican president and Senate.