Science

Indiana Headed for Another Member-on-Member Senate Primary
Messer close to announcing a bid and Rokita expected to follow

Indiana Rep. Luke Messer is assumed to be running for Senate, but he could be joined by another member of the Indiana delegation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Hoosier politicos call it the “Wabash mafia.” And now two graduates of the tiny, all-male college in Indiana are likely to face off in the Republican primary to take on Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly in 2018.

GOP Reps. Luke Messer and Todd Rokita graduated from Wabash College just one year apart. And while neither has officially entered the race, they’re both making moves that suggest this cycle’s primary could again feature member-on-member theatrics.

The Supreme Court Confirmation Battle That Began 30 Years Ago
Three senators on Judiciary panel weathered watershed 1987 fight

Judge Robert Bork, nominated by President Ronald Reagan to be an associate justice of the Supreme Court, is sworn before the Senate Judiciary Committee at his confirmation hearing in September 1987. (John Duricka/AP File Photo)

In one of the more striking moments from the Senate confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch this week, Sen. Charles E. Grassley offered this advice:

Don’t answer every question.

‘What Does It Mean?’ West Virginians Weigh GOP Health Care Plan
Voters at town hall meeting wanted to know more about the overhaul

Stephanie Frederickson, right, and Diane Hughes, who spoke about their experience with medical coverage under the 2010 health care law, listen to Sen. Joe Manchin during a town hall meeting in Martinsburg, W.Va. on Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — Diane Hughes took the microphone, looked down at the paper in front of her and said, “I’m nervous and I don’t like politics, but here it goes.”

Hughes was among the West Virginia residents gathered at the Robert C. Byrd Health Science Center here on Thursday for a town hall meeting on the Republican plan to overhaul the 2010 health care law. The meeting’s organizers had asked her to share her story, and she admitted she was initially reluctant to do so.

Rising Waters at Home Cause Republicans to Buck Party in D.C.
Moderate Republicans are out front on climate change threat

New York Rep. John J. Faso is one of several GOP freshmen concerned about climate change. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Whipping out his iPhone, New York Rep. John J. Faso scrolled through text messages from his wife until he found the photo he sought. 

“There’s my wife’s car in the driveway,” he said, pointing to a lump covered in snow. “So there was no climate change that we were worried about in the last couple of days.”

Manchin: Only Trump Can Stop Obamacare Repeal
Democratic senator gives his constituents White House phone number

West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin III conducts a town hall meeting in Martinsburg, W.Va., on Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

MARTINSBURG, W. Va. — There might be a few more West Virginians clogging up the White House phone lines, courtesy of their home-state senator. 

Sen. Joe Manchin III encouraged his constituents gathered at a town hall meeting here Thursday to phone the White House and implore President Donald Trump to slow down the effort to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law.

Fears Surface of Russian Hack of Congress IT System
Subcommittee told legislative branch is highly vulnerable

Sasse asked about the likelihood of a Russian incursion. Witnesses said it was likely. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Senators’ examination of Russian efforts to undermine democracies took a turn that hit close to home on Wednesday, when witnesses openly speculated to the Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism that Congress itself was likely the victim of nefarious hacking.

When Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., asked experts testifying about the likelihood of such an incursion, former Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves offered it was “almost certain” congressional IT systems have been infiltrated by Russia’s security services, particularly if two-factor security is not deployed.

CBO Score Will Ring in Another Round of House Fight
House GOP health plan enters another stage

Ryan has previously been a big proponent of waiting for CBO’s scores. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

All eyes this week are off the floor as Capitol Hill awaits a Congressional Budget Office score for House Republicans’ health care plan and the House Budget Committee prepares to mark up the plan.

While a CBO estimate on how much the plan to partially repeal and replace the 2010 health care law will cost and what effect it would have on those with insurance is expected as soon as Monday, the Budget Committee has scheduled its markup of the legislation for Wednesday morning.

Think Modern-Day Politics Are a Revival of the Nixon Era? Check It Out
Newly released 1970s Congressional Records document familiar themes

Digitized copies of Congressional Record from the 1970s are now available online for free. (Courtesy U.S. Government Publishing Office)

The president feuds with the media. Congress investigates secret intelligence operations. And tensions simmer between the United States and Iran. 

Welcome to the 1970s.

Work on Fiscal 2018 Budget On Hold
More focus on health care bill

Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla., says that Congress’ budget is not necessarily President Donald Trump’s budget. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Work on the fiscal 2018 budget resolution appears on hold until after Congress passes a repeal of the 2010 health care law.

But Republicans on the Budget and Appropriations committees do not appear concerned about the delayed timeline or the upcoming budget request from the White House, which will ask lawmakers to increase defense discretionary spending by $54 billion and pay for it by an equal cut to domestic discretionary spending bills.

The Democrat Who Hugged the President
Trump and Sen. Joe Manchin share an interlocked fate

West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin III has embraced the idea of working with President Donald Trump, a smart strategy given the Mountain State’s strong support for Trump in last year’s election. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Most Democrats fled after President Donald Trump’s address to a joint session of Congress last week. But Sen. Joe Manchin III instead approached him — and leaned in for a hug.

The gesture only lasted a few seconds. But it speaks volumes about the symbiotic relationship that has emerged between the West Virginia Democrat and the Republican president in recent months.