conservatives

Six Things to Watch as Tax Overhaul Endgame Nears
Final votes could come just before lawmakers leave for the holidays

House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady says both Senate and House tax plans have “strengths” when it comes to the treatment of income of pass-through entities. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A number of sticking points emerged last week as Republican lawmakers began jockeying for their favorite parts of the House and Senate tax plans.

Top tax writers from each chamber will formally meet Wednesday at 2 p.m. to discuss their differences, but the real negotiations have already begun behind the scenes.

Moore Relied Heavily On Fundraising Outside Alabama During Final Campaign Stretch
Most large-dollar donations were from outside state in October and November

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The Republican candidate for Alabama’s Senate seat, Roy Moore, raised three times more in big-dollar donations from donors outside his state than from those within Alabama, according to newly released Federal Election Commission data that covers Oct. 1 through Nov. 22

Moore, the former chief judge of the Alabama Supreme Court, raised nearly $680,000 in itemized donations from outside of Alabama during that time, and only $172,000 from donations within the state.

The X-Factor in the Alabama Senate Race
Republicans who don’t support Roy Moore could make it a close race

Alabama Democrat Doug Jones, center, accompanied by New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker and Alabama Rep. Terri A. Sewell in Birmingham on Sunday, has tried to appeal to GOP voters in his Senate race against Republican Roy Moore. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

PRATTVILLE, Ala. — For Democrat Doug Jones to win a Senate race in Alabama, he needs some help from voters like 74-year-old Don Jockisch.

“I don’t know,” Jockisch, a Republican, said when asked whom he will support in Tuesday’s election, when Jones faces Republican Roy Moore, the former chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court.

Budget Deal Could Bust Caps by $200 Billion
Two-year agreement expected to draw motley crew of supporters

Marc Short, left, White House director of legislative affairs, and Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse at the Capitol on Dec. 1. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Congressional negotiators have moved well north of $200 billion in their discussions of how much to raise discretionary spending caps in a two-year budget deal.

The higher numbers under consideration follow an initial Republican offer several weeks ago to raise defense by $54 billion and nondefense by $37 billion in both fiscal 2018 and 2019 — a $182 billion increase in base discretionary spending.

‘Get Out And Vote For Roy Moore,’ Trump Says
President talks tax cuts, economy — and Hillary — during Pensacola rally

President Donald Trump and the first lady Melania Trump at the annual National Christmas Tree lighting ceremony at the White House Ellipse on Nov. 30. On Friday night, he gave a verbal endorsement to Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore. (Photo by Astrid Riecken/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump on Friday flew 800 miles aboard Air Force One to the doorstep of the hotly contested Alabama Senate race, but addressed it directly for just over three minutes.

In a way, however, by using his remarks in Pensacola, Florida, to discuss his agenda and issues that matter to conservative voters just over the border in Alabama, the president sent a message: A vote for GOP candidate Roy Moore is vote for what he calls his “make America great again” agenda.

Arizona State Sen. Kimberly Yee Expresses Interest in Franks’ Seat
Staunchly conservative Republican would be first Chinese-American Republican woman in House

Kimberly Yee has made her mark on a host of issues including abortion, education and government mismanagement. (Kimberly Yee for Arizona 2016)

Arizona state Sen. Kimberly Yee expressed interest in replacing Republican Rep. Trent Franks after he announced his resignation on Thursday.

Franks, who represents Arizona’s 8th District, announced he would resign after amid a House Ethics Committee Investigation about discussions he had with two female staffers about surrogacy.

Arizona’s Trent Franks to Resign Jan. 31
GOP lawmaker said to have made female staffers uncomfortable with talk of surrogacy

Arizona Rep. Trent Franks was first elected in 2002. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 7:24 pm | Arizona Republican Trent Franks said Thursday he is resigning from Congress effective Jan. 31 amid an Ethics Committee investigation into discussions he had with two female staffers about surrogacy. 

In a lengthy statement Thursday evening, Franks said he and his wife struggled with fertility.

House Conservatives Mixed Emotions Over White House Confab
Hints but no guarantees from leadership spark split feelings

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Leaders of the two conservative House caucuses are both hopeful and worried about what’s happening Thursday afternoon at the White House.

They hope Speaker Paul D. Ryan is advocating for a Republican-crafted spending strategy during a meeting with President Donald Trump and other congressional leaders. But they worry that negotiations over topline spending numbers could undermine their position.

House Leaders Show Wide Gap in Year-End Priorities

Speaker Paul D. Ryan, left, and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, showed the two parties have a wide gap in their priorities for the end-of-year spending debate. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The wide gap between Republicans and Democrats on year-end priorities was on full display Thursday as Speaker Paul D. Ryan and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi held their weekly press conferences.

Pelosi said Democrats will not support the two-week continuing resolution that the House is voting on Thursday afternoon because it doesn’t address “urgent needs,” while Ryan wouldn’t say explicitly that Republicans have enough votes to pass it on their own.

The Unkindest Cut: How to Pay for Tax Overhaul Sweeteners
Hundreds of billions of dollars needed to pay for sought-after changes

Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady is among the top negotiators in the House-Senate conference committee on the GOP’s tax overhaul. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

As the House and Senate prepare for a conference committee on the Republican tax overhaul, the two chambers face the challenge of reconciling stark differences, and where to find billions of dollars they may need to smooth things over. 

Among the most significant discrepancies are the treatments of pass-through businesses, the estate tax and the corporate alternative minimum tax. House Republicans are also considering a provision to further scale back the proposed trimming of the state and local tax deduction.