Rob Portman

Trump: Military ‘Locked and Loaded’ for North Korea
President escalates threats against Kim Jong-un

President Donald Trump speaks during a security briefing on Thursday at his Bedminster National Golf Club in New Jersey. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump escalated the war of words between the U.S. and North Korea early Friday, tweeting that the military was “locked and loaded” should Pyongyang make good on its threats to strike U.S. targets.

“Military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely,” the president tweeted. “Hopefully [North Korean leader] Kim Jong Un will find another path!”

House Republicans Not Ready to Abandon Obamacare Repeal
Hope springs eternal in chamber that Senate GOP can still get something done

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy want the Senate to keep alive the effort to repeal the 2010 health care law. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

By LINDSEY MCPHERSON and REMA RAHMAN

House Republicans on Friday said they’re not planning to abandon their effort to repeal the 2010 health care law, but their current plan for how to achieve that goal is to simply hope the Senate gets its act together.

Schumer Outlines Some Democratic Priorities for Health Care
The Democratic leader wants the two parties to work together

Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., conducts a news conference in the Capitol to discuss the defeat of the Republicans’ healthcare bill. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer said he hopes Democrats and Republicans can work together to address health care, and he has a few ideas about what they should tackle first.

Senate Republicans failed earlier in the day to garner enough votes for a last-ditch effort to repeal major components of the Affordable Care Act. Their push to fulfill a years-long promise to repeal Obamacare ended — at least for the time being — with a dramatic 49-51 vote around 2 a.m. on Friday. So Democrats, led by Schumer, are saying they want to work with Republicans to fix the Affordable Care Act instead of dismantling it. 

Chaos Consumes Future of Obamacare Repeal Effort
Senate Republicans have “assurances” the House would go to conference with the chamber

Ohio Sen. Rob Portman said Thursday he would support a slimmed-down bill to repeal the 2010 health care law in order to get to a conference with the House. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

By JOE WILLIAMS, REMA RAHMAN and LINDSEY McPHERSON

Senate Republicans are hinging their support on a “skinny” bill to repeal the 2010 health care law on assurances that the chamber would go to conference with the House on a broader bill with replacement measures.

Some GOP Skepticism of Sending Obamacare Repeal to Conference
Questions about what the ‘skinny’ bill would produce

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski has some concerns about what may happen when the House and Senate go to conference on health care. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Several senators are expressing skepticism about the emerging Republican plan to pass a bill rolling back “skinny” pieces of the 2010 health care law and then hope for a broader agreement in a conference committee with the House.

Kansas Republican Jerry Moran, who was one of the senators who came out against the broader Senate health care bill, told Roll Call he is concerned about entering a conference without a real Senate position.

Senate Rejects Obamacare 'Repeal and Delay' Proposal
Updated 2015 proposal turned back as health care reconciliation debate continues

Sen. Rand Paul has championed the “repeal and delay” approach. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Republicans on Wednesday were unable to garner the votes necessary to pass a measure to repeal large portions of the 2010 health law with a two-year delay.

Seven GOP senators joined with Democrats to sink the proposal, 45-55. The failure highlights the continued struggle Senate Republican leadership is facing in coalescing their conference around one health care proposal. Sens. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, Susan Collins of Maine, Dean Heller of Nevada, John McCain of Arizona, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Rob Portman of Ohio voted no. 

Key GOP Senators Mum on 'Skinny' Repeal Support

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn has said it is important to get to a conference committee with the House on health care legislation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Key Republican swing votes are withholding judgement on a plan from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to pass a “skinny” bill to repeal the 2010 health law in order to get to conference with the House.

That approach, however, has won early support from a number of GOP members, as Republicans look to try to continue a dialogue around a broader health care overhaul package after this week.

Senate Rejects First Obamacare Repeal Proposal
Portman and Cruz amendments fail to advance

Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, leaves the meeting after the Senate Republicans' unveiled their new version of health care plan on Thursday, July 13, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Republicans failed Tuesday evening to overcome an objection from Democrats over updated legislation that would overhaul the U.S. health insurance system.

The amendment, a version of a recent proposal from Republicans to repeal and replace large portions of the 2010 health care law and make sweeping changes to Medicaid, failed 43-57.

GOP Hopes for Obamacare Repeal Rest on ‘Skinny’ Bill
Several other Republican proposals expected to fail

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., can now bring up several GOP health care proposals for a vote after corralling the support necessary on Tuesday to bypass a key procedural hurdle. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Republican hopes to overhaul the U.S. health insurance system appear to hinge on the passage of a “skinny” bill that would only repeal a select few provisions in the 2010 health care law.

GOP senators and aides anticipate that several of the other Republican health care proposals expected to be considered by the chamber in the coming days will fail, clearing the way for a package that would likely just repeal the employer and individual mandates and an excise tax on medical device manufacturers.

‘Disappointed’ Trump Holds Cards Close on Firing Sessions
AG’s recusal from Russia probe ‘unfair to the presidency,’ Trump gripes

Then-Sen. Jeff Sessions campaigns last year with then-GOP nominee Donald Trump. President Trump would not say Tuesday if he intends to fire now-Attorney General Sessions. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file)

President Donald Trump is holding his cards close on whether he intends to fire Jeff Sessions, his hand-picked attorney general he now worries is too “weak” and “beleaguered” to do the job.

“I am very disappointed with the attorney general,” Trump said in the White House Rose Garden during a joint news conference with his Lebanese counterpart. “He should not have recused himself” from the Justice Department’s Russia election investigation “almost immediately after he took office.”