Richard Blumenthal

Puzder Is First Trump Nominee Spiked by GOP
Votes just weren’t there for fast-food tycoon

Andrew Puzder, left was the first of President Donald Trump’s Cabinet nominees to not get enough Republican votes for confirmation. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

The withdrawal of Andrew Puzder’s nomination to be Labor secretary represents a milestone in the nascent Trump administration: the first time congressional Republicans played a significant part in spiking a Donald Trump Cabinet pick. 

The nomination of the CEO of CKE Restaurants, which runs the Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s chains, had been plagued by scandal, including revelations he had employed an undocumented immigrant as a housekeeper and failed to pay taxes on her, as well as the fallout from a 1987 divorce that brought up allegations of domestic violence against him.

Why Democrats Didn’t Go to the Mat on Linda McMahon
Former WWE chief breezed to confirmation

Blumenthal, left, and McMahon, right, previously ran against each other for the Connecticut Senate seat. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

President Donald Trump’s Cabinet nominees have sparked fierce fights in the Senate, but Democrats declined to go to the mat on one of his picks: former World Wrestling Entertainment CEO Linda McMahon. 

The businesswoman and two-time Republican Senate nominee from Connecticut was easily confirmed Tuesday morning to lead the Small Business Administration, with 81 senators voting in her favor. On the surface, that may seem surprising, given that Democrats have decried Trump’s nominees’ exorbitant wealth and their lack of governing experience.

Word on the Hill: It’s a Healthy Day
What's happening this week?

Maria Marlowe poses with author Dr. Mark Hyman and his newest book last year. (Brent N. Clarke/Getty Images file photo)

It’s the first day of national Health and Wellness Coach Week and to kick it off, Ivanka Trump’s former health coach is coming to Capitol Hill.

Maria Marlowe writes a monthly food column and is the founder of an integrative nutrition health coaching practice in New York. She will be joined by other health leaders for a congressional briefing at noon in the Capitol Visitor Center, Room 201AB.

Trump Lashes Out at Blumenthal Over Gorsuch Comments
President attacks an undecided Democrat even as he needs 8 Dem votes

Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal was attacked by President Donald Trump over the senator’s description of comments the president’s Supreme Court nominee made in a private meeting. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 10:02 a.m.President Donald Trump lashed out at Sen. Richard Blumenthal on Thursday, saying the Connecticut Democrat “misrepresents” what his Supreme Court nominee said during a private meeting.

The attack on an undecided Democrat on the Judiciary Committee won’t make the White House’s job any easier as it searches for Democratic votes to confirm Judge Neil Gorsuch, who met with Blumenthal on Wednesday. And Trump drew a parallel between criticism in 2010 that Blumenthal had misrepresented his military service during Vietnam and what he said Gorsuch told him.

Gorsuch Calls Trump’s Judge Comments ‘Disheartening’
Trump referred to a federal judge as a “so-called judge”

Supreme Court Judge Neil Gorsuch has been meeting with senators this week. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

By TODD RUGER and JOHN T. BENNETT, CQ Roll Call 

Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch, in a meeting Wednesday with Sen. Richard Blumenthal, characterized as “disheartening” and “demoralizing” a tweet by President Donald Trump that called a federal judge a “so-called judge.”

Democratic Lawmakers Feel Boost from Women’s March
Minority party hopes movement will help Congress rein in Trump

Protesters march down Independence Avenue in Washington, holding signs during the women’s march on Saturday, the day after the inauguration of Donald Trump as the 45th president of the United States. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Capitol Dome was more than just a symbolic backdrop for Saturday’s Women’s March on Washington. It was the intended target of hundreds of thousands of voices of frustration with President Donald Trump. 

For all of the anti-Trump placards — both crude and shrewd — many marchers descended on the nation’s capital to send a message to the branch of government that, they hope, will be a check on the new president.

In Break from Trump, Mattis Pushes for Tough Stance on Russia

Secretary of Defense nominee James Mattis testifies during his confirmation hearing in the Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

James Mattis, Donald Trump’s choice for Defense secretary, advocated several shifts in U.S. national security policy in his confirmation hearing Thursday, including a much tougher stance on Russia than the president-elect has articulated.

On several topics during his Senate Armed Services testimony, the retired Marine Corps four-star general differed in substance or tone from positions Trump took in the campaign. Unless Trump or Mattis changes his view, the contrasts could lead to tensions between the White House and the Pentagon.

Democrats to Grill Sessions on Race, Civil Rights
NAACP cites prosecution of three black voting rights advocates

Senate Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley meets with fellow committee member and Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., in his Capitol Hill office on Nov. 29. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Democrats will turn the tables this week on Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions, a former federal prosecutor who often doggedly questioned executive branch nominees during his 20 years on the Judiciary Committee.

Don’t expect them to go easy on their colleague as the Alabama Republican's two days of confirmation hearings start Tuesday.

Joe Biden and the Selfies
Vice president presides over mock Senate swearing-in ceremonies one last time

Vice President Joesph R. Biden Jr., takes a selfie with Sen. Richard Blumenthal and his children Claire and David during a mock swearing-in ceremony on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

“It won't be the same without you,” Senate Republican Conference Chairman John Thune told Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., while gathering family members for the ceremonial re-enactment of his swearing-in on Tuesday.

Because the vice president’s term runs until noon on Inauguration Day on Jan. 20, it is the departing Biden who got one last chance to kiss wives, hug babies, and offer dating advice on the first day of the new Congress.

DSCC Names First Female Executive Director
Mindy Myers ran the organization's independent expenditure efforts

Myers is the first woman to lead the DSCC. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Veteran operative Mindy Myers has been named the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee’s new executive director, becoming the first woman to lead the organization.

Myers oversaw the DSCC’s independent expenditure efforts during the 2016 campaign cycle. She has also managed Senate campaigns and worked for Democratic Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island.