Amy Klobuchar

USDA official says agencies can find new staff after they move to Kansas City
Research chief also disputes reports that USDA is burying climate science research

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced new homes for the Economic Research Service and National Institute of Food and Agriculture. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A top Agriculture Department research official told a Senate committee that two agencies slated for a contested move out of Washington can recover from an exodus of employees and denied media reports the department has hidden agency documents on climate change.

Scott Hutchins, deputy undersecretary for research, education and economics, said Thursday that many employees eligible to move to the Kansas City metropolitan area with either the Economic Research Service or National Institute of Food and Agriculture have notified USDA that they will stay in Washington. Employees who have agreed to move have until Sept. 30 to make the trek west, where the agencies will operate out of a temporary space until USDA finds a long-term landlord.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar lays out 100 actions for first 100 days if she wins White House
Minnesota Democrat would undo Trump actions on environment, go further than Obama on wages

Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota used an appearance at the National Press Club to  outline both “sprints” and marathon efforts her administration would undertake if she won the presidency. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Laying out 100 actions she would take in the first 100 days if she were elected president, Sen. Amy Klobuchar pledged Tuesday to reverse President Donald Trump’s rollback of environmental agreements and regulations and go further than former President Barack Obama in battling high drug prices and raising federal contractors’ wages.

“On day one, we will get back into the International Climate Change Agreement and restore the Clean Power Plan and work to bring back the gas mileage standards. Those are things you can do without passing a law,” Klobuchar said at the National Press Club.

Editor's Note: Democrats on TV

Editor's Note: A July 11 story that described the number of times members of Congress have appeared on television in 2019 was incorrect and based on incomplete statistics.

The story relied on CQ’s Newsmaker transcripts from Jan. 3 through June 26, which include appearances on CNN, CNN International, MSNBC, Fox News, Fox Business, PBS NewsHour, cable news town halls and the Sunday morning talk shows. The transcripts do not include every TV appearance by members of Congress.

Amid Epstein child sex scandal, Trump doesn’t rule out firing Secretary Acosta
About 2007 plea deal, president says he will ‘look at it very carefully’

Alex Acosta, center, then-nominee for secretary of Labor, talks with Sens. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., left, and Ted Cruz, R-Texas, after the senators introduced him during his Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions confirmation hearing in March 2017. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump on Tuesday left open the possibility that he might fire Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta over a plea deal he struck last decade with accused child sex-trafficker Jeffrey Epstein after top congressional Democrats called for his ouster.

Acosta has been an “excellent secretary of Labor,” Trump said. But the president stopped short of saying Acosta would remain a part of his Cabinet as yet another scandal has engulfed his administration.

3 ways Trump’s Asia swing — including his North Korea visit — was peak Trump
President’s penchant for the dramatic was on full display

South Koreans at the Seoul railway station on June 30 watch a TV screen depicting North Korean leader Kim Jong Un meeting with President Donald Trump at the Demilitarized Zone that separates the two Koreas. (Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump strode side by side onto North Korean soil Sunday with its hard-line leader, Kim Jong Un, in a moment that was vintage Trump.

From regional airport hangar rallies that start with Air Force One rolling up to classic rock tunes to setting up dramatic Washington cliffhangers, to Trump’s ability to drive — and dominate — news cycles to becoming the first sitting American president to enter North Korea, stagecraft is paramount.

Democrats want to eliminate corporate tax cut but their tax measure avoids it
Democrats have plans for spending money raising corporate rate would bring in, but they’ll go nowhere as long as Trump is in the Oval Office

House Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., has not included eliminating the corporate tax cut in current moving legislation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

There’s no lack of plans from Democrats paid for by undoing at least part of the huge 2017 corporate tax rate cut. But the only Democrat with a tax bill currently moving through Congress is pointedly not talking about revisiting the lower 21 percent rate.

The 14 percentage point rate cut in the 2017 law, which is permanent, was projected to save corporations $1.35 trillion over its first 10 years. 

Climate change takes back seat at presidential debate — again
But several candidates said they would prioritize recommitting the U.S. to the Paris climate accord

Climate change was lightly touched on during the second Democratic presidential debate in Miami, Florida. California Sen. Kamala Harris, right, and former Vice President Joe Biden, left, speak as Sen. Bernie Sanders looks on. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

The second night of the Democratic candidates’ debate Thursday dedicated just as little time to climate change as the first, leaving activists once again frustrated and amplifying their calls for a session dedicated to the issue.

“Adding only a single measly minute to the climate discussion compared to the first night was grossly insufficient — voters need to understand where every candidate stands on the most pressing emergency of our time,” Kassie Siegel, climate director at the Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund, said shortly after the debate. “That’s why we need a climate debate.”

House passes election security measure requiring cybersecurity safeguards, paper ballots
Republicans, in split with Democrats, call it federal overreach and are pushing their own proposals

Speaker Nancy Pelosi at an event with House and Senate Democrats on Thursday before a House vote on the Securing America’s Federal Elections Act. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The House passed an election security measure Thursday that would require voting systems to use backup paper ballots in federal contests, while also mandating improvements to the higher-tech side of the polls.

The full chamber voted 225-184 to send the bill to the Senate where it faces stiff opposition from Republicans. House Democrats fast-tracked the bill to the floor after it cleared the Administration Committee by a party-line vote. 

Climate change gets 10 minutes in Democrats’ 2-hour debate
Climate change got little debate time, but that didn’t stop some candidates from weaving climate messaging into their answers

Chuck Todd of NBC News greets Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), former housing secretary Julian Castro, former Texas congressman Beto O'Rourke and other candidates after the first night of the Democratic presidential debate on June 26, 2019 in Miami, Florida. A field of 20 Democratic presidential candidates was split into two groups of 10 for the first debate of the 2020 election, taking place over two nights at Knight Concert Hall of the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County, hosted by NBC News, MSNBC, and Telemundo. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Climate change is a priority for Democratic primary voters, but the issue got little debate time Wednesday night. But that did not stop some of the candidates.

Senate Democrat Elizabeth Warren came out of the gate calling out “giant oil companies that want to drill everywhere” while the rest of the country watches “climate change bear down on us.”

6 dividing lines from the first Democratic debate
10 of the Democratic presidential candidates faced off, with another 10 following tonight

Democratic presidential candidates, from left, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio, former housing secretary Julian Castro, Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey, Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, former Rep. Beto O'Rourke of Texas, Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, and former Maryland Rep. John Delaney take the stage during the first Democratic debate. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

The first Democratic presidential debate offered the clearest picture yet of where candidates are divided — well, about half of them anyway.

The 24 candidates vying for the nomination to succeed President Donald Trump have been circling each other in the early primary states, releasing competing proposals and vying for attention. Ten of them stood side by side for the first time Wednesday night, the first of two debates this week televised on NBC.