2018

Supreme Court to Hear Maryland Gerrymandering Case
Republican voters are challenging 6th District lines drawn by Democrats

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear a challenge to Maryland’s 6th District lines. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Supreme Court late Friday agreed to hear a challenge to the lines of a Maryland congressional district that were drawn by Democrats.  

The court has already heard a partisan gerrymandering case from Wisconsin, where Republicans drew the state legislative map. 

Arizona Rep. Trent Franks Now Resigning Immediately
The congressman cited his wife's hospitalization

Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., takes his seat as he arrives for the House Judiciary Committee hearing on oversight of the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 4:30 p.m. After announcing Thursday that he would resign from Congress as of January 2018, Arizona Rep. Trent Franks announced on Friday he’s resigning immediately, citing a family illness. 

“Last night, my wife was admitted to the hospital in Washington, D.C. due to an ongoing ailment. After discussing options with my family, we came to the conclusion that the best thing for our family now would be for me to tender my previous resignation effective today, December 8th, 2017,” Franks said in Friday afternoon statement. 

At Odds with NRSC, Montana’s Rosendale Stands by Roy Moore
Rosendale is running for GOP nod to take on Tester

Montana State Auditor Matt Rosendale is running for the GOP nomination to take on Democratic Sen. Jon Tester. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Montana State Auditor Matt Rosendale said he supports Alabama GOP Senate nominee Roy Moore "until he’s found guilty of a crime" and praised his public service in a Thursday radio interview. 

Rosendale’s comments put him at odds with the National Republican Senatorial Committee, which cut off ties to Moore, and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who has called on Moore to step aside

LePage Calls ‘Fake News’ on Report Trump Wants Him to Challenge King
Report didn’t adequately list his accomplishments as Maine’s governor, LePage political adviser says

Maine Gov. Paul LePage greets the crowd before then-Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks in Portland in August 2016. (Sarah Rice/Getty Images file photo)

Maine Gov. Paul LePage did not take kindly to a report that President Donald Trump wants him to challenge Maine Sen. Angus King, branding the story as “fake news.”

LePage, a businessman-turned-Republican politician, called the report “vile,” according to a tweet by a WCSH-TV reporter. 

Arpaio ‘Seriously, Seriously, Seriously’ Considering Run for Flake’s Seat
Former sheriff and immigration lightning rod has teased runs for the Senate in the past

Former Maricopa County (Ariz.) Sheriff Joe Arpaio turned down the notion of running for Arizona Republican Rep. Trent Franks’ seat after Franks announced his resignation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Disgraced former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio says he has no interest in running for Rep. Trent Franks’ seat but is considering running for Arizona’s open Senate seat.

“I am seriously, seriously, seriously considering running for the U.S. Senate,” he told the Daily Beast. “Not the congressman’s seat.”

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.

2018 Congressional Calendar: Senators Plan More Work Days Than House
Both chambers have released their schedules for next year

The Senate and House schedule for 2018 is out. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Both the House and Senate have released their chambers’ plans for gaveling in during 2018. Roll Call combined those schedules into the calendar below.

Both chambers will return for the second session of the 115th Congress on Wednesday, Jan. 3. The House plans to be out of town for three full weeks ahead of Election Day on Nov. 6 (and four weeks total around the election), while the Senate plans to recess for two weeks around the midterm. 

Former Democratic Gov. Phil Bredesen Running for Senate in Tennessee
Democrats already have an Iraq War veteran in the open-seat race

Former Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen said his experience prepares him to “fix the mess in Washington” in announcing his campaign for retiring Sen. Bob Corker’s seat. (Bredesen for Senate via YouTube)

Former Democratic Gov. Phil Bredesen is running for the open Senate seat in Tennessee. 

“I’m running for the Senate because I have the right kind of experience, and the actual track record that it will take to start working across party lines to fix the mess in Washington,” Bredesen said in announcement video Thursday morning. 

Franken Makes Democrats Remember ‘Minnesota Massacre’
Botched 1976 Senate pick led to Democratic-Farmer-Labor party being swept from top offices two years later

Embattled Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., is expected to make an announcement about his future on Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton will reportedly appoint Lt. Gov. Tina Smith to replace Sen. Al Franken, who is expected to announce his resignation today.

Sources told the Minnesota Star-Tribune that Smith is the likely choice to fill Franken’s seat before a special election in 2018.

A Gun Rights Vote Only the GOP Base Can Appreciate
Expansion of concealed carry permission will die in the Senate, but the NRA really wanted the vote

Majority Whip John Cornyn has some doubts that he can get a bill passed that would improve background checks for gun purchasers but doesn’t make it easier for gun owners to carry concealed weapons across state lines. A House bill passed Wednesday would do both. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

One government shutdown may be narrowly averted, but another looms right around the corner. The stain of sexual misconduct at the Capitol continues to spread, and an alleged child predator is days away from possibly joining the Senate. Middle East destabilization seems assured as Congress gets its wish to move the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. Public support dwindles daily for a loophole-encrusted, deficit-busting tax package that would be the year’s biggest legislative achievement. The push for presidential impeachment has gone far enough to necessitate procedural pushback in the House.

A week such as this one — already chockablock with headlines touching the Hill — seemed to the Republicans who run the place like an ideal time for making a bold hiding-in-plain-sight move.