independents

Democrats Want Probe of Interior Scientists' Reassignments

Sen. Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., and other Democrats are concerned the administration is reassigning scientists to try to get rid of them. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democrats at a hearing for Interior and Energy Department nominees seized on the published comments of an Interior scientist who claims that Secretary Ryan Zinke was using forced reassignments to coax experienced scientists to resign.

The top Democrat on the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, Maria Cantwell of Washington, said at the Thursday hearing that she will ask Interior’s Inspector General to investigate the allegations raised by the scientist, Joel Clement, in an op-ed published by The Washington Post.

When Congressional Spouses (Allegedly) Misbehave
Jane Sanders not the first to get into legal trouble amid a re-election

A federal investigation is looking into a real estate deal and bank loan during the tenure of Jane Sanders, wife of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, as president of the now-defunct Burlington College. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

With congressional job approval hovering around 17 percent, members of Congress are carrying their own baggage into their re-election races, even without the weight of a spouse in legal trouble.

Jane Sanders isn’t a stranger to the spotlight, as her husband, Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders, ascended the political ladder and nearly claimed last year’s Democratic Party presidential nomination. But now she’s in the news because of a federal investigation into a real estate deal and a corresponding bank loan during her tenure as president of the now-defunct Burlington College in Vermont.

Governors Call for Bipartisan Fix to Health Care
State leaders want to be at decision table with Congress

Ohio Gov. John Kasich is one of 11 governors calling for a bipartisan solution to health care reform. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Following the collapse of the Senate’s health care overhaul bill, a group of governors are suggesting a new way forward: bipartisanship. And the group wants a spot at the decision table.

Eleven governors from across the nation issued a statement Tuesday morning calling on the Senate to stop the effort to repeal the 2010 health care law without a replacement.

Republicans Seeing Red in Newly Open Nevada Seat
Rosen’s decision to run for Senate opens up 3rd District Seat

Nevada Rep. Jacky Rosen is running for Senate, leaving behind a swing House seat. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

House Republicans are largely on defense in 2018, but they see a bright spot in Nevada’s 3rd District. And they believe that spot is even brighter now that the Democratic incumbent is running for Senate.

Rep. Jacky Rosen’s decision to challenge GOP Sen. Dean Heller opens up the Nevada Democrat’s competitive seat. Operatives from both parties expect the House race to once again be one of the most competitive — and expensive — in the country.

Trump Stances Could Affect Cross-Border Energy Trade

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, arrives to chair the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on near-term outlook for energy and commodity markets on Tuesday, jan. 19, 2016. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

When President Donald Trump signed an executive order in April to impose a tariff on Canadian softwood lumber, the administration and its supporters heralded the move as an equalizing measure meant to bolster domestic timber production.

For Trump, the tariff was the latest move meant to build on his “America First” campaign platform. The action his administration took amounted to a tariff in the form of an import tax totaling around 20 percent for softwood lumber imports from Canada. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross estimated the measure could result in $1 billion a year from Canadian lumber imports, which make up about one-third of the U.S. lumber market.

Opinion: Demanding Dignity From Leaders Comes With a Complicated History
But it’s worth a try...

Our slave-owning third president, Thomas Jefferson, is a reminder that our leaders have always been flawed, Curtis writes. (Alex Wong/Getty Images file photo)

The room — 14 feet, 8 inches wide and 13 feet long — has no windows. It had been a restroom at the Monticello home of Thomas Jefferson in Virginia. But now, the small room adjacent to Jefferson’s, the one historians believe once belonged to Sally Hemings, will be restored and given its due, as will the enslaved woman who evidence indicates was the mother of six children of the third president of the United States.

As the current president, Donald Trump, is often lambasted for lowering the dignity and honor of the office, the news coming out of Monticello — where the role of its enslaved people is belatedly a part of the historical presentation to visitors — is a bracing reminder that our leaders have always been flawed. Founding Father Jefferson wrote stirring words of equality while owning fellow human beings.

Centrist Project Charts Path for Electing Independents
Alaska Governor, independent officials discuss how to win elections without parties

Alaska Gov. Bill Walker was among the Independent politicians who discussed a movement to elect nonpartisan candidates to Congress and statehouses at the National Press Club on Wednesday. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

 

When Alaska Governor Bill Walker first ran for the state’s highest office in 2010, he faced a problem: many of his friends and supporters couldn’t vote for him in the closed Republican primary because they weren’t affiliated with the party.

EPA Inhofe Alumni Group Closer to Expanding

Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., has seen a number of former staffers head to the EPA. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

President Donald Trump’s nominations for an assistant EPA administrator and two members of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission were advanced Wednesday by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.

Lawmakers on the panel voted, 11-10, to move forward with the nomination of Susan Bodine to become the EPA’s assistant administrator of enforcement and compliance assurance. The Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance enforces EPA’s rules and oversees the agency’s environmental justice and compliance.

Wray Pledges Impartiality as FBI Director
‘I will never allow the FBI’s work to be driven by anything other than the facts‘

FBI Director nominee Christopher Wray is sworn in for his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 2:09 p.m. | Amid a deepening federal investigation into the Trump campaign’s contact with Russian operatives, Christopher Wray assured senators Wednesday he would remain independent as FBI director and adhere to the rule of law “no matter the test.”

“If I am given the honor of leading this agency, I will never allow the FBI’s work to be driven by anything other than the facts, the law, and the impartial pursuit of justice,” Wray told the Senate Judiciary Committee during the confirmation hearing. “Period. Full stop.”

DNC Targets Louisiana, Cassidy on Medicaid Expansion
State has one of the largest populations to benefit from program

A Democratic National Committee ad directed at Louisiana and Republican Sen. Bill Cassidy’s vote tells the story of how one single mother in Baton Rouge has benefitted from the state’s Medicaid expansion. (DNC via YouTube)

The Democratic National Committee is launching an ad campaign in Louisiana specifically focusing on Medicaid and putting pressure on one of its senators’ vote on the Republican health care bill.

The ad by the DNC features a single mom named Krista who has three children — one of whom has autism, the other with seizures, and the youngest with behavioral problems — who benefited from Medicaid expansion in the state.