Even when Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) tries to be nice, sometimes it still comes out sounding a little harsh.
Reid spoke on the Senate floor Monday, and tried his hand at complimenting expected GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush for saying last week that he supports giving Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch a vote in the Senate. But Reid couldn’t finish the sentence before it turned into another criticism of Bush’s brother, former President George W. Bush.Read More »
Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced a series of new steps aimed at making airline travel more safe, which includes a new directive requiring all airport and airline workers to be screened by the Transportation Security Administration before boarding a flight, just like regular passengers.
Johnson’s directive was issued just months after reports that a Delta Air Lines worker was charged with using his security clearance at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson airport to smuggle weapons up to New York. Officials said more than 150 guns were smuggled to New York in this way, which raised new questions about what further steps can be taken to clamp down on these activities.
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Senate Republicans are indicating that this could be the week that the Senate finally votes to confirm attorney general nominee Loretta Lynch, after some Democrats have charged that racism is the real reason behind her delay.
While Republicans initially took several weeks to ask her questions, the GOP more recently has refused to hold a vote on Lynch until Democrats agree to a bill to help victims of human trafficking. Democrats have blocked that bill because of language that would prevent a victims’ fund from being used to fund abortions.Read More »
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) on Sunday offered a three-step plan for immigration that he would try to implement if he wins the White House in 2016 — one that would give illegal immigrants a path to citizenship as long as real border security reforms happen first.
Rubio was one of the key Republican supporters of the Senate’s doomed immigration reform bill, which many conservatives blasted in the last Congress as one that would reward illegal immigrants without guaranteeing any increase in border security. Rubio has said the main lesson he’s learned from that effort is that the American people don’t want one major reform bill, which means Congress will have to deal with it in pieces to help build trust.
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House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Friday that when it comes to the Obama administration’s effort to finalize a nuclear agreement with Iran, failure is an option.
Boehner told Fox Business’s Maria Bartiromo that he hopes no deal emerges in the next few months, because he doesn’t think Iran will ever implement any deal requiring substantive curbs on its nuclear program.Read More »
Members of the House and Senate will meet next week to negotiate a final budget plan for 2016, one that Republicans have touted as a path toward balancing the budget in 10 years or less.
But that work has already been largely undone by Congress, which has passed one bill that would add billions of dollars in new debt and puts the goal of a budget surplus out of reach. Republicans in the House are also pursuing tax legislation that — while championed by many conservatives — would further add to the debt.Read More »
A government watchdog is reporting that more than 300,000 people have received hundreds of millions of dollars in excess subsidies to buy health insurance under Obamacare, and will have to return those extra payments.
The Treasury Department’s Inspector General for Tax Administration reported that as of late February, the IRS had processed 737,148 tax returns from people who claimed a “premium tax credit” under Obamacare. Those credits are the way the law subsidizes low-income people who are required to buy health insurance.
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Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Thursday warned Republicans that if they don’t hold a vote soon on Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch, he’ll use a rare Senate procedure to force a vote on the long-stalled nominee.
“I had a conversation today with a number of Republicans and told them really to get her done or I will make sure they will have an opportunity to vote against her,” Reid said in an interview on MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow Show that will air Thursday night.Read More »
The Republican chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure is dating a lobbyist for the airline industry, although the couple seems to have made an attempt to ensure they don’t mix business and pleasure.
According to a report in Politico, Chairman Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) is dating Shelley Rubino, a vice president for Airlines for America, and has been since last year. Shuster told Politico that they have a “private and personal relationship.”
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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Thursday that she doesn’t think Hillary Clinton’s 2002 vote in favor of the Iraq war should disqualify her from becoming the Democratic nominee for president in 2016.
The question was asked because former Sen. Lincoln Chafee said he is exploring the Democratic nomination as well, and said anyone who voted in favor of the Iraq war should not be the Democratic nominee. “I do think it’s a disqualifier,” said Chafee, who was a Republican while he was in the Senate but is now a Democrat.
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The House passed legislation Thursday to terminate the estate tax, in a vote that saw only seven Democrats join Republicans in defiance of President Barack Obama’s threat to veto the bill.
The bill to end what the GOP calls the “death tax” was part of group of several tax-related bills that Republicans called up this week, just as millions of Americans were paying their income taxes. Several bills were passed Wednesday, including proposals aimed at stopping the IRS from injecting politics into decisions about whether certain groups should get tax-exempt status.
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Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.) said Thursday that luck is the biggest reason why people succeed in America, although he gave a sort of half-hearted nod to another possible reason.
“America is a wonderful country,” he said. “We all have a chance to make it. Some make it better than others. That’s because luck and, whatever, hard work.”Read More »
After placing last on a list of large federal agencies that are the best places to work, the Department of Homeland Security is handing out awards and money to employees in an effort to boost morale, according to a top DHS official.
The National Archives and Records Administration runs an annual poll among hundreds of thousands of federal workers to see where these workers are most happy. According to the 2014 survey, NASA was voted the best large agency for workers, followed by the Department of Commerce and the Department of State.
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Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said Wednesday that America has a “bad president” in President Barack Obama, which could be leading some to mistakenly conclude that America’s power is fading.
“America is not in decline, we just happen to have a period of time where we have a bad president, but we’re going to overcome that,” he said at the Heritage Foundation.Read More »
The Department of Veterans Affairs’ Office of Inspector General released a long-awaited report that officially confirms VA officials in Philadelphia purposefully manipulated the wait times of veterans seeking health care, and makes dozens recommendations on how to improve service to these veterans.
Much of the contents of the report have been known for weeks, such as the 35 specific recommendations the OIG made to improve the troubled Philadelphia office. Still, the report is likely to once again shine a light on the seemingly endless failures of the VA nationwide, as well as Veterans Affairs regional offices, or VAROs, that have exhibited systemic problems.
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