Lindsey McPherson

Homeland, Judiciary Democrat asks Pelosi to form election security task force
Rep. Lou Correa cites Mueller's findings as a need for a group to help head off future attacks

Rep. Lou Correa is asking Speaker Nancy Pelosi to form a task force to examine proposals for combating foreign influence and ensuring U.S. electoral systems are secure, according to a letter obtained by CQ Roll Call.

The House Homeland Security and Judiciary Committee member wrote to his fellow California Democrat citing Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s findings that foreign actors compromised U.S. election security as reason such a group is needed.

House floor shenanigans punctuate start of spending season
Democrat calls GOP males ‘sex-starved,’ while Republicans use procedural delay tactics

Congressional proceedings are usually pretty dry, but on Wednesday, House floor watchers might as well have been tuned into a reality TV show given all the shenanigans occurring as lawmakers debated their first spending package for the upcoming fiscal year.

Between a Democratic lawmaker calling her GOP male colleagues “sex-starved” and Republicans using a series of procedural tricks to delay proceedings, there was no shortage of tension to kick off the fiscal 2020 appropriations process.

Republicans move for House to adjourn over inaction on border crisis
GOP members use procedural delay tactic to highlight need for more funds at border

Frustrated over what they say is Democrats’ inaction on President Donald Trump’s request for more money to manage the migrant crisis at the border, a few House Republicans on Wednesday used a procedural motion to adjourn to protest on House floor.

The first motion to adjourn, offered by Texas GOP Rep. Chip Roy, was defeated 146-244. The second, offered by Arizona GOP Rep. Andy Biggs, was also defeated, 140-254. 

On congressional pay raise, maximum political pain and no gain
Hoyer optimistic, but McCarthy cool on member cost-of-living update

House Democratic leaders are learning the hard way that when it comes to the politically dicey issue of raising lawmaker pay, there is maximum risk with a minimum chance of gain. 

Amid the fallout from Democrats in the chamber abruptly pulling a legislative spending bill from a broader package, leaders on Tuesday were left to state an easy to articulate but difficult to achieve goal: that the only path to bigger paychecks was through bipartisan, bicameral negotiations.

Democrats’ next move unclear after approving subpoena lawsuits
Resolution is House’s broadest step so far in response to Trump’s ‘oppose-all-the-subpoenas’ strategy

Updated 7:13 p.m. | House Democrats voted Tuesday to bolster their oversight power by giving committees the authority to take Trump administration officials to court quickly, but it did little to settle broader questions in a caucus that is trying to balance competing political and legal strategies ahead of the 2020 elections.

The resolution becomes the House’s broadest step in response to President Donald Trump’s “oppose-all-the-subpoenas” strategy, because it allows the Democrats to skip the floor process to enforce committee subpoenas through the federal courts.

Fight over pay raise for Congress causes Democrats to pull spending bill
Rules chairman says measure could return as early as next week

House Democrats have decided to pull the fiscal 2020 Legislative Branch spending bill out of a package moving on the floor this week, averting a politically toxic debate over salaries for members of Congress.

“We could have done this in a bipartisan fashion, but people were demagogues on this. I don’t want to leave my members who are in tough districts subjected to that,” House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer told reporters Monday evening.

Pelosi says Trump using tariffs to distract from Mueller. Is she doing the same on impeachment?
Speaker again tries to downplay Democratic divisions on impeachment, saying, ‘We know exactly what path we are on’

President Donald Trump’s proposal to impose tariffs on Mexican imports if that country doesn’t stem the flow of migrants trying to enter the United States is “a distraction from the Mueller report,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Wednesday.

“And it’s served its purpose, right? Here we are,” the California Democrat noted as she faced questions about tariffs during her weekly press conference.

Before considering power that could jail defiant Trump officials, Dems plan to go to court
‘Inherent contempt’ remains an option, but House vote next week would seek civil enforcement first

Despite some Democrats calling on the House to use its inherent contempt authority to fine or jail administration officials who defy subpoenas, Democratic leaders have opted to first fight the battles in civil court.

The House will vote next week on a resolution to authorize the Judiciary Committee to pursue civil enforcement of subpoenas it issued to Attorney General William Barr and former White House counsel Don McGahn. 

On DREAM Act, 9 Democrats defect on rule vote, even as caucus shows more unity
Relatively rare for members of the majority to buck leadership in voting against a rule

House votes on rules to begin debate on legislation are typically party-line tests. But when nine Democrats voted Tuesday against the rule for an immigration bill, it was a high-water mark for Democratic defections this year.

Still, Democrats are more unified on such votes than the House majority party has been in all but two years of the last decade. 

Clyburn walks back comments suggesting impeachment proceedings are inevitable
“I also said we must not get out in front of our committees, all in the same sentence”

The No. 3 House Democratic leader on Monday walked back comments he made a day earlier on CNN, when he said he believes the chamber will eventually open impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump.

House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn criticized reporters for seizing on just one aspect of his interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union.”

House will vote to hold Barr in contempt over Mueller report
Judiciary panel issued contempt citation last month against attorney general for ignoring subpoena

Updated 8:38 p.m. | The House will vote June 11 to hold Attorney General William Barr and former White House counsel Don McGahn in contempt of Congress, House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer announced Monday.

The planned floor action follows a party-line vote in the Judiciary Committee last month on a contempt citation against Barr. The panel’s action came after the attorney general ignored its subpoena for special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s full, unredacted report and underlying investigatory materials.

‘Reluctant impeachment’: Will Pelosi ever be swayed to go there?
Democrats understand the speaker’s cautious approach to impeachment but believe she can be convinced

Will Speaker Nancy Pelosi ever come to a point where she is ready to lead her caucus in opening an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump?

The California Democrat hasn’t ruled it out, despite strong signals she wants to avoid the divisive move and let the voters decide in 2020 whether to punish Trump for his alleged misdeeds. 

‘For the good of the country’: Pelosi hopes Trump family or staff stage an intervention
Speaker says president deployed ‘bag of tricks’ to avoid infrastructure meeting he was unprepared for

President Donald Trump’s family or staff should stage an intervention, Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday, noting she’s concerned for his well-being and that of the country.

“I pray for the president of the United States,” the California Democrat said. “I wish that his family or his administration or his staff would have an intervention for the good of the country.”

Infrastructure talks run off the road by latest Trump, Dem fracas

A White House meeting Wednesday on infrastructure between President Donald Trump and top congressional Democrats ended almost as soon as it began after the president pledged not to work with Democrats on any policy priorities until they ended investigations into his administration and campaign.

Trump left the meeting with Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer after just a few minutes, a move that the two Democrats said was staged ahead of time.

Democratic Caucus oversight discussion does little to resolve impeachment divisions
Some members still want to press ahead, while others still aren’t convinced impeachment is best path

Updated 2:11 p.m. | A Wednesday morning discussion by House Democrats on oversight matters did little to resolve a stewing intraparty debate about whether to open an impeachment inquiry against Donald Trump, but it did set off the president.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi organized the meeting to continue to hold her caucus back from heading down an impeachment path with an unknown outcome that could backfire on her party. As she left the discussion to go to the White House to meet with Trump on infrastructure, she had harsh words for the president.

Democrats divided over whether it’s time to open impeachment inquiry
Caucus to discuss the matter during a special meeting Wednesday

Updated 2:50 p.m. | House Democrats are divided over whether they should open an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump, with top leaders still hesitant to do so even as more rank-and-file members say it’s time.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi has called a special caucus meeting Wednesday morning to discuss oversight matters, including the impeachment question, several members said.

A Don McGahn no-show could be turning point on impeachment
Members of leadership starting to speak more directly of proceedings

Rep. David Cicilline, a member of House Democratic leadership who serves on the Judiciary Committee, said that if former White House counsel Don McGahn does not testify Tuesday, the panel should open an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump.

And the Rhode Island Democrat, who cited “a pattern from the White House to impede our investigation,” is not alone in the leadership ranks. 

Where all 24 House Judiciary Democrats stand on impeachment
Majority says that may eventually need to launch an impeachment inquiry to get information

More than half of the Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee say their panel may eventually need to open an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump if his administration’s efforts to stonewall congressional investigations continue.

CQ Roll Call talked to all but one of the 24 Democrats on the panel over the past two weeks about their views on impeachment in light of Trump, his administration and his allies deciding not to cooperate with their investigation into potential obstruction of justice, corruption and abuses of power. The Democrat not reached directly, California’s Eric Swalwell, a presidential candidate, weighed in on Twitter.

Judiciary Democrats may ask full House to formally approve their investigation into Trump
Jackson Lee says she thinks it is time for a resolution of investigation

Some Judiciary Committee Democrats, concerned about the Trump administration escalating its stonewalling into their investigation of potential obstruction of justice and abuses of power by the president and his associates, want the full House to approve their probe. 

“I believe we are at a point now that we should issue a resolution of investigation,” senior Judiciary member Shelia Jackson Lee said Thursday.

Road ahead: House health care week again, as Senate tackles contentious nominations
House Democrats also voting on Equality Act, which will mark passage of half of their top 10 bills

It’s health care week, part two, in the House as the chamber will vote on a package of seven bills designed to strengthen the 2010 law and lower prescription drug prices — after passing a measure last week that Democrats said would protect people with pre-existing conditions.

But the health care package won’t be the only marquee legislation on the floor this week. Democrats will be halfway through advancing their top 10 bills out of the House after a vote on HR 5, the Equality Act.