Medicaid

When the Deal Precedes the Bid, Time to Change the Rules?
With bipartisan agreement that the budget system is broken, the Hill sets in motion a serious overhaul debate

Boxes containing President Donald Trump’’s fiscal 2019 budget are unpacked by staff in the House Budget Committee hearing room on Monday morning. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The latest unfeasible budget proposal is so two days ago. But a rewrite of the unsalvageable budget process may be unavoidable three seasons from now.

What the White House delivered to the Capitol on Monday were among the least consequential documents of the year. That’s because their fine-print aspirations of fiscal restraint were entirely theoretical. They had been rendered meaningless three days before by the newest law on the books, which makes real the promise of at least $300 billion extra in acceptable appropriations during the next several months.

‘Crisis Budgeting’ Likely Ahead Despite White House Claim
‘All sorts of riders’ could bring new shutdown threats, experts say

Copies of President Donald Trump’’s 2019 budget request are unpacked by House Budget Committee staff on Monday. Experts say it won’t end Washington’s decade of ‘crisis budgeting.’ (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

White House officials contend the two-year budget deal that became law last week will end Washington’s spending crises and government shutdown threats. But President Donald Trump’s new budget request suggests otherwise.

Trump himself was lukewarm about the spending package he signed last week, which raised defense and domestic spending caps for the remaining seven-and-a-half months of this fiscal year and the next. And the president had little to say about the fiscal 2019 budget blueprint his administration sent to Capitol Hill on Monday. But his top aides painted each one as game-changing documents.

Opinion: Acting on Opioids Is Easy. Recovery Is Hard
It’s time to save lives and take on the deadly opioid epidemic

Republicans and Democrats in Congress agree on the need to address the deadly opioid epidemic, Rep. Paul  D. Tonko, D-N.Y., writes. (John Moore/Getty Images file photo)

During his State of the Union Address last week, President Donald Trump repeated a promise that he has made many times: America is finally going to do something about its opioid epidemic. The issue could not be more pressing.

We are in the midst of a national public health crisis that cut short 64,000 lives in 2016 alone, a 21 percent increase in overdose deaths over the previous year. Given the devastating urgency of this issue, I want to believe that our president has not forgotten the tragedy of those lost and the pain of the loved ones they leave behind. But he has made similar promises in the past, nearly all of them abandoned and broken.

Active-Duty Candidates Can Run — But Can They Campaign?
Even Matt Reel’s staff doesn’t know where he’s deployed

Matt Reel is running for Congress. But he’s also on active duty. (Screen Shot/Matt Reel for Congress/YouTube)

Matt Reel is running for Congress. But he can’t campaign until June — two months before Tennessee’s August primary.

Even if his staff knew where he is — which they don’t — and even if he had time while overseas, Reel can’t legally communicate with them about campaign strategy for his 7th District race while he’s on active duty.

Senate Leaders Strike Budget Deal
Agreement between McConnell and Schumer may not yet have Pelosi support

The Senate’s leaders have reached an agreement on a longer-term budget agreement. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate leaders announced Wednesday the contours of a bipartisan deal to raise defense and nondefense spending by nearly $300 billion over the next two years.

The agreement, which Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer announced on the chamber floor, would raise defense spending by $80 billion in the current fiscal year and more next year, and nondefense spending by $63 billion in fiscal 2018 and $68 billion in fiscal 2019.

Pelosi Withholding Support for Budget Deal, Wants Immigration Commitment
‘Without a commitment from Speaker Ryan … this package does not have my support’

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi says she will not support a budget deal without a commitment to a floor debate on immigration. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi announced Wednesday there is a budget agreement that reflects Democratic priorities but that she and her caucus cannot support it without a commitment from Speaker Paul D. Ryan to hold an open floor debate on immigration. 

“This morning, we took a measure of our Caucus because the package does nothing to advance bipartisan legislation to protect Dreamers in the House,” the California Democrat said in a statement. “Without a commitment from Speaker Ryan comparable to the commitment from Leader McConnell, this package does not have my support.”

Democrats Land Recruit Against Arkansas’ French Hill
Clarke Tucker faces an uphill race against the well-funded Republican

The DCCC is targeting Arkansas Rep. French Hill in November. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

No Democrat represents Arkansas at the federal level. National Democrats are excited about state Rep. Clarke Tucker’s prospects of changing that. 

Tucker, an attorney, entered the race against GOP Rep. French Hill in the 2nd District on Monday. He faces an uphill climb. Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates the race Solid Republican.

More States Jump on Medicaid Work Requirements Bandwagon

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma, has signaled openness to approving work requirements for Medicaid. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

A growing number of mostly Republican-led states are rushing to follow Kentucky’s lead in requiring thousands of people on Medicaid to work or lose health coverage.

The governors of South Dakota, Alabama, Louisiana and South Carolina have said in recent weeks that they plan to pursue work requirements for their Medicaid programs, following the Trump administration’s release of guidelines for the concept in January.

In Budget Talks, the ‘Dreamer’ Tail Wags the Spending Caps Dog
Immigration has been a major drag on wrapping up appropriations bills, members say

Arizona Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva says budget and immigration talks should be split up. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Lawmakers are hurtling toward a Feb. 8 spending deadline, when the fourth stopgap of fiscal 2018 expires, with little demonstrable progress toward agreement on new spending caps they have known would be necessary since the last two-year budget deal was reached in October 2015.

“Anybody would be very, very optimistic or unrealistic — take your choice — if they said by next Tuesday we’re going to have a global agreement. As a matter of fact, we appear to be moving in the opposite direction, which is sad,” House Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer told reporters Tuesday.

The Retirement at the Top of Planned Parenthood

Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards is stepping down after 12 years. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The long-time president of abortion-rights advocacy organization Planned Parenthood announced on Friday she would be stepping down from her post.

Cecile Richards, who has been at the head of the organization since 2006, made the announcement in an interview with The New York Times, though reports of her leaving surfaced earlier this week.