New Mexico

Sen. Al Franken Accused of Sexual Misconduct
‘He mashed his lips against mine and aggressively stuck his tongue in my mouth’

Minnesota Sen. Al Franken is facing allegations of sexual misconduct. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

UPDATED 11/16/17 2:04 p.m. | A Los Angeles radio news anchor accused Sen. Al Franken of groping and kissing her without consent in an open letter Thursday on the radio station’s website.

Leeann Tweeden, a 790 KABC morning host, wrote that she was on a 2006 USO tour with the Minnesota Democrat, and the former Saturday Night Live cast member had written material for a joint sketch that involved a kiss. Franken insisted on rehearsing, she said.

DCCC Adds 11 GOP Targets, including Paul Ryan
Democrats are now targeting 91 Republican districts in 2018

New Mexico Rep. Ben Ray Luján chairs the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has added 11 more Republicans to its 2018 target list, including Speaker Paul D. Ryan.

The DCCC now has its sights on 91 GOP seats next year. Twenty-three are districts that Democrat Hillary Clinton carried last year, while 68 voted for President Donald Trump. The new targets were first reported by The Washington Post.

After Texas Shooting, Bipartisan Bill Aims to Close Gun ‘Loophole’
Flake: Since 2007 only a single instance military reporting domestic violence charge

Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A bipartisan Senate duo introduced legislation Tuesday that would ban individuals convicted of domestic violence from legally buying a gun.

The bill, from Sens. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., and Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., would apply to convictions from both military and civilian courts. It would aim to correct what the lawmakers say is a loophole that allows those convicted of domestic violence by a military court to still purchase firearms. Such individuals, by law, are currently barred from buying guns.

Members Face Tough Odds in Races for Governor
Competitive primary, general elections await nine representatives running

Hawaii Rep. Colleen Hanabusa would be a heavy favorite to win her state’s governor’s race if she gets past the Democratic primary. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

There’s been plenty of media attention on the twelve members who have decided to call it quits and retire from the House, and another eight members are seeking a promotion to the Senate. But nine additional members are forgoing likely re-elections for uncertain and challenging races to become their state’s governor.

Many of them have to navigate crowded and competitive primaries (including knocking off an incumbent in one state), and the precedent for members getting elected governor isn’t great.

For the Love of Literature: Durbin Has Formed Relationships Over Books
The Senate’s go-to bookworm has countless reading buddies

Sen. Richard J. Durbin, D-Ill., has a book in there somewhere. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

A Georgetown student and bookworm named Dick Durbin worked at Discount Books and Records in Dupont Circle in the mid-1960s. 

The store is gone now, but that same bookworm is still handing out books — now to senators, presidents and Supreme Court justices.

Immigration Measure Won’t Ride Omnibus, Negotiations Continue
Graham: ‘We’ll see where it goes in the House’

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

Immigration reform will not be part of this year’s omnibus spending bill, Senate Republicans said Thursday after a meeting at the White House.

Republican and Democratic lawmakers involved in immigration negotiations are trying to find a way to pair citizenship for those in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, with enhanced border security measures.

Word on the Hill: Darkest Hour
Free lunch, Bison day, Hirono’s health update, new D.C. book and Christopher Nolan at LOC

(Screen shot of “Darkest Hour” trailer)

The new movie “Darkest Hour” will be screened in D.C. this evening, followed by a panel that includes House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and Rep. Joseph Crowley, D-N.Y.

NBC’s Chuck Todd will moderate the panel at the United States Navy Memorial (701 Pennsylvania Ave. NW) at 7:15 p.m. The movie’s star, actor Gary Oldman, is also scheduled to attend.

NRCC Announces First ‘On the Radar’ Young Guns for 2018
The candidates had to prove they could run competitive races

Dino Rossi, who is running in Washington’s 8th District, was named to the program. (By Tom Williams/Roll Call file photo)

The National Republican Congressional Committee named its first round of “On the Radar” candidates for the 2018 cycle, highlighting GOP challengers who could wage competitive races.

Each of the 31 candidates had to reach certain benchmarks in fundraising, messaging and communications to prove their viability, according to the NRCC. The notice is the first of three levels of the committee’s “Young Guns” recruitment program.

Women — and the Power of the Purse — Will Be Key in 2018
Female donors are skyrocketing and more women are considering runs

From left, Reps. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, Katherine M. Clark of Massachusetts and Joyce Beatty of Ohio raise their fists during a photo op for the House Democratic women on Jan. 4. (Cliff Owen/AP file photo)

Democratic lobbyist Anne MacMillan recalls sitting at small political fundraising dinners not long ago, with men filling all the chairs around her.

“Generally, the conversation would circle around hunting or fishing or golf, or something I couldn’t even participate in,” said MacMillan, a former aide to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.

Sex Trafficking Bill Would Narrow Protections for Internet Companies
Senators say the bill is aimed at Backpage.com, not Facebook or Google

Sen. Rob Portman, shown here in 2015, introduced the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act earlier this year. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)