Humberto Sanchez

Paul Challenges Rubio Over Obama's Cuba Plan

Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky trolled Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, his potential rival for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, on Twitter Friday over Rubio's opposition to President Obama's plan to normalize relations with Cuba.  

Reid: Yucca Mountain Project Will Never Be Built

Sen. Harry Reid claimed another victory Thursday in his never-ending fight to kill the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste project — and ensure it stays dead.  

The Nevada Democrat touted a new Nuclear Regulatory Commission report.  

Rubio Threatens To Unravel Obama Cuba Deal

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., excoriated President Obama’s plan to normalize relations with Cuba and threatened to hold up efforts to confirm an ambassador and fund an embassy.  

“This president is the single worst negotiator we have had in the White House in my lifetime who has basically given the Cuban government everything it asked for and received no assurances of any advances of democracy and freedom in return,” ripped Rubio, who may run for president in 2016, at a press conference. Incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., was also cool to the plan, and he deferred to Rubio, a Cuban-American, on the issue, according to an AP report .  

Heller Pledges Yucca Mountain Will Stay Dead Despite Leaving Energy Committee

Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., pledged that a proposal to build a nuclear waste depository at Yucca Mountain would remain dead, even though he is stepping away from the Energy and Natural Resources Committee to join the Finance Committee.  

"I don’t think it changes the dynamics,” Heller said of his new committee assignment for the 114th Congress.  

Deal on Keystone Vote, Energy Efficiency Elusive in Senate (Video)

A frustrated Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., channeled Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger as he described negotiations with Republicans on a path to passing an energy efficiency bill and holding a vote authorizing the Keystone XL pipeline.  

“You can't always get what you want, but you try sometimes to get what you need,” is how Reid started his regular Tuesday afternoon news conference, referring to one of Jagger’s most famous lines.  

McCain Not Calling for Shinseki's Resignation — Yet

Sen. John McCain refused to join the American Legion in calling for the resignation of Veteran Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki in the wake of reports about veterans dying waiting for care.  

“I can understand their anger,” the Arizona Republican said Monday in a brief interview with reporters off the Senate floor.  

Unemployment Extension Stuck in Legislative Limbo

An extension of emergency unemployment benefits remains stuck in legislative limbo nearly a month after the Senate voted to send it to the House and more than four months after the benefits expired.  

The two Senate co-authors of a retroactive, five-month unemployment extension continue to pressure Speaker John A. Boehner to take it up, but the speaker is still waiting for the White House to make a new offer before he will act. And the White House has made no such offer.  

Cornyn: Obamacare Repeal Vote Should Wait

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn said he hopes his GOP colleagues hold off on a vote to fully repeal Obamacare until after Republicans have shown they can govern.  

"I think it's important that we demonstrate that we can be productive before we have the inevitable fight over repealing Obamacare," the Texas Republican said in an interview with CQ Roll Call Wednesday. “We are going to have that vote. But my own preference would be we have it after we've been able to demonstrate that we can actually get some things done."  

Ted Cruz: Preserve Filibuster, Even For Obamacare Repeal

There's a limit to what Sen. Ted Cruz would do to repeal Obamacare.  

The Texas Republican said Monday that Republicans should do “everything humanly possible to repeal Obamacare" during a speech at Heritage Action’s annual policy summit. It's a line he's used before. But he later added a caveat.  

Cornyn: 'We Learned the Hard Way'

At the start of the last Congress, John Cornyn wrote an editorial titled "Partial Government Shutdown May Be Needed to Restore Fiscal Sanity." He's singing a different tune today.  

"I've evolved," the Texas Republican and newly minted Senate majority whip said in an interview last week with CQ Roll Call.  

Senate Colleagues Pay Tribute to Boxer

Barbara Boxer's Senate colleagues offered a raft of heartfelt accolades Thursday, after the California Democrat's announcement she would not seek re-election .  

“Senator Barbara Boxer is one of the finest public officials the state of California has seen,” Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said. “Her efforts to combat climate change and ensure we have clean air and clean water will be remembered long past her retirement.”  

Ernst Gives GOP #SOTU Rebuttal a Folksy Feel

Republicans are going folksy with their choice to respond to President Obama’s State of the Union address.  

Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., jointly announced at their retreat Thursday that Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, would deliver the Republicans’ rebuttal.  

Menendez Staffer Bids Farewell to Hill Life

Danny O’Brien never had a career path plotted out — certainly not one that included serving as Senate Foreign Relations Committee staff director for the past two years, in the Clinton White House or in senior Senate posts for now-Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J.  

Now, after more than 20 years in the public sector, O’Brien is calling it quits to join General Electric’s global government affairs team. O'Brien has served under Menendez for the past six years, first as chief of staff before moving over to Foreign Relations, where Menendez served as chairman in the last Congress. Menendez said O’Brien has the critical ability to understand politics, policy and process.  

Reid Pushes On Despite Injuries, Reiterates 2016 Run

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said an accident he suffered last week that left him with a concussion and broken bones would not affect his ability to lead his caucus and he reiterated his intention to run for re-election.  

“I’ve been elected [by Senate Democrats] to run the Senate for two years and I am in the process of getting set up for the next go around,” Reid said in a Friday interview with KNPR in Las Vegas, his first since the accident.  

Grassley to Ramp Up Oversight at Judiciary

When Loretta Lynch paid Sen. Charles E. Grassley a visit last month, the new Judiciary Committee chairman handed her a book — of all the unanswered letters he's sent to the administration.  

“I want to know if she is going to cooperate with our oversight,” the six-term Iowa Republican told CQ Roll Call in an interview in his office. “I am very interested in oversight … and we can’t carry it out if we can’t get the cooperation from them.”  

Wendell Ford, Longtime Kentucky Senator, Dies at 90

Kentucky political legend and purveyor of Southern wit Wendell H. Ford has died.  

Ford, 90, had been undergoing treatment for lung cancer.  

GOP Senator Wants to Wave the White Flag on DHS Funding

Facing a potentially tough re-election battle, Illinois Republican Mark S. Kirk has had enough of the standoff over funding the Department of Homeland Security and wants the Senate to pass a clean bill.  

“Yeah, I think in the end,” Kirk said when asked if Majority Leader Mitch McConnell should have the Senate pass a DHS spending bill without language designed to block President Obama’s executive actions on immigration. “I generally agree with the Democratic position here,” Kirk said. “I think we should have never fought this battle on DHS funding.”