Richard Blumenthal

House Cancels Votes in Wake of Shooting
Hearings, events across Capitol also postponed

The shooting at the GOP practice in Alexandria prompted House leaders to cancel votes. (CQ Roll Call)

The House canceled floor votes on Wednesday in the wake of the shooting at the Republican baseball practice in Alexandria, Va. 

Several hearings across the Capitol, including an Appropriations subcommittee that was due to examine the budget of the Capitol Police, were canceled or postponed. 

196 Democratic Lawmakers, Including Pelosi, Sue President Trump
Lawsuit claims claim violation of constitution’s ‘emoluments clause’

Almost 200 Democratic lawmakers are planning to file a lawsuit alleging that President Donald Trump has violated the Constitution’s “foreign emoluments clause.” (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Nearly 200 Democratic lawmakers, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, have filed a lawsuit alleging that President Donald Trump has violated the Constitution’s “foreign emoluments clause” by retaining interest in his business empire.

Thirty members of the Senate Democratic caucus are among the signatories to the legal effort, along with 166 House members. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., and House Judiciary Ranking Democrat John Conyers Jr., are the leaders of the effort.

A Tale of Becket, McCain and Preet
Comey testimony provides a few moments of drama, bewilderment

Former FBI Director James B. Comey was the center of attention at the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing Thursday, but several other actors and cultural references made their way into the picture as well. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The venue for Thursday’s much-anticipated testimony of James B. Comey left minimal space for disruptions or outbursts, with invited guests and members of the media occupying much of the hearing room.

But the theater of the former FBI director’s appearance did not disappoint. Comey was testifying publicly for the first time about the circumstances of his firing by President Donald Trump.

Mitch McConnell, Still Playing the Long Game
Trump revelations, FBI director search, don't rattle majority leader

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell did not allow the latest news about President Donald Trump to knock him off message. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

BY JASON DICK AND JOE WILLIAMS, CQ ROLL CALL

It’s difficult to get Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to play anything but “The Long Game,” the Kentucky Republican’s political strategy, encapsulated by his 2016 memoir of the same name.

Lawmakers’ Safety Exemption for Old Steamboat Alarms Coast Guard
Fire risk to passengers high, according to document

A bill exempting the Delta Queen steamboat from a fire safety law has come under strong criticism. (Doug Strickland/Chattanooga Times Free Press/AP file photo)

The Senate voted overwhelmingly last month to permit a 90-year-old stern-wheel steamboat named the Delta Queen to travel the Mississippi River as an overnight cruise ship for up to 174 passengers.

Relaunching the now-idle boat would rekindle a connection to the region’s history and inject millions of tourist dollars and hundreds of jobs into states up and down the river, supporters of the measure said.

A Senator Out of His Shell, and Under Trump’s Skin
Connecticut’s Blumenthal at the center of opposition to president

Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal makes his way through the Senate subway in the Capitol after a meeting of Senate Democrats on May 10. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Of the 157 tweets President Donald Trump has sent in the last month alone, just six have singled out individuals for ridicule. And half of those have been directed at Richard Blumenthal.

The senior senator from Connecticut, who’s made reticence and prudence the guideposts of his first four decades in political life, is projecting a very different sort of persona these days. While presenting himself in public as quietly as ever, he’s become one of president’s most incisive Democratic antagonists on an array of topics.

White House Paints Democrats as Hypocrites Over Comey Firing
Trump spokeswoman Sanders: Had Clinton fired FBI chief, Dems would have been ‘dancing in the streets’

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders justified FBI Director James Comey’s firing, saying, “Democrats and Republicans alike have been calling for [Comey] to step down.” (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated at 8:48 a.m. President Donald Trump and his top aides on Wednesday morning tried to paint Democrats as hypocritical for their outrage over his firing of FBI Director James Comey.

Trump abruptly fired Comey late Tuesday afternoon after Attorney General Jeff Sessions and his top deputy recommended the termination in a memo that said Comey had overstepped his authority last summer when he publicly announced his own conclusion to close an investigation of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was secretary of state.

Senate Democrat Finalizing Independent Counsel Plan After Comey’s Termination
Blumenthal says he hopes legislation will not be required

Sen. Richard Blumenthal is working to finish a legislative proposal to provide for an independent counsel. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

With FBI Director James B. Comey’s termination, one Senate Democrat is accelerating plans to craft legislation for an independent counsel to investigate President Donald Trump and ties to Russia.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, who was himself a federal prosecutor, told CQ Roll Call late Tuesday that he had been working on writing a bill that would look similar to the old lapsed statute for such outside prosecutors, but the effort will now accelerate.

Comey Firing Spurs Calls for Special Prosecutor in Russia Probe
Both Republicans and Democrats criticized timing of termination

Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., conducts a news conference in the Capitol on the firing of FBI director James Comey on May 9, 2017. Schumer called for a special prosecutor to look into the relationship between the Trump campaign and Russia. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

By JOE WILLIAMS and NIELS LESNIEWSKI, CQ Roll Call

The firing of FBI Director James B. Comey brought renewed calls from both House and Senate Democrats for a special prosecutor to investigate alleged Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Comey Defends Pre-Election Actions on Clinton Investigation
But FBI director says he wouldn’t change decision to release info

FBI Director James Comey testifies before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Wednesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

FBI Director James B. Comey vigorously defended his actions ahead of the 2016 presidential election when it came to criminal investigations about candidates, as senators from both political parties warned him at a hearing Wednesday that the agency’s reputation was on the line.

Comey testified at the Senate Judiciary Committee the day after Hillary Clinton blamed him in part for her election loss, since he told Congress just 11 days before the election that the agency was reopening a criminal probe into her use of personal email to improperly send classified information when she was secretary of State.