nationwide

Congress’ Move to Leave Obamacare Mostly Intact May Save Law
Supporters, opponents of health care law unite on new brief

Five law professors argue in a brief that the Justice Department and 20 GOP-led states are wrong when they say other major provisions in the 2010 health care law must be struck down. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Congress killed off a key penalty in the 2010 health care law last year but left the rest of the law intact — and that might prove pivotal to a lawsuit in which the Justice Department and 20 Republican-led states argue that the law’s other major provisions must now be struck down.

That’s because the federal courts will look at what Congress intended to accomplish regardless of what individual lawmakers wanted to do, according to a group of five law professors with deep experience in litigation over the health care law.

Opinion: My ‘Family Leave’ Was a Well-Timed Government Shutdown
Yes, I worked at the White House. But before all that, I am a father

Mothers protest at the Capitol during the government shutdown of 2013. For some new parents, the shutdown brought an unexpected chance to spend time with their children — but luck isn’t much of a family leave policy, Jenkins writes. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

This Father’s Day, I thought a lot about what it means to be a good father. You see, in my mind, I am a father first.

Yes, I worked at the White House. Yes, I now work for Will Ferrell’s Funny Or Die. Yes, I am a sad New York Mets fan. But before all of these things, I am a father. It’s the most important job I will ever have. Unfortunately, in today’s America, considering yourself a “father first” is not always expected by employers or society at large.

Opinion: Higher Education in America Finds Itself on a Slippery Slope
Our great research universities risk getting left behind

As support for our educational system becomes increasingly politicized, a significant number of people are now questioning the very worth of a higher education, Augustine writes. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images file photo)

A decade ago I chaired a committee that was established on a bipartisan basis by members of the House and Senate to assess America’s future economic competitiveness. The committee’s 20 members included CEOs of Fortune 100 companies, former presidential appointees, presidents of major public and private universities and three Nobel laureates. Upon completion of our work, two of our members joined the then-president’s Cabinet, one as secretary of Energy and the other as secretary of Defense.

The document we produced, which became known as the “Gathering Storm Report,” concluded that the top two priorities for America to remain competitive in the global marketplace were to strengthen education and to double our investment in basic research.

Opinion: Work Requirements Don’t Actually Work
They do nothing to reduce poverty or address the underlying economic inequality

Demonstrators at a news conference with faith leaders on Capitol Hill on May 7. A growing body of social science research shows that work requirements do nothing to reduce poverty, DeLauro and Sánchez write. (Sarah Silbiger /CQ Roll Call file photo)

Under the guise of “promoting work” and “reform,” the Trump administration and congressional Republicans are seeking radical changes to the way we fight poverty in America.

Let us not be fooled, Republican proposals that tie strict so-called work requirements to anti-poverty programs are designed to make it harder for people to access basic services such as health care, nutrition and housing.

Opinion: Ignore the Hyperbole, Encouraging Work Is a Worthy Goal
Work requirements and other reforms offer a pathway out of poverty for many

Job seekers fill out registration forms at a career fair in San Francisco in 2015. The House Republican farm bill directs a significant portion of existing SNAP funds into job training programs for eligible adults, Thompson writes. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images file photo)

The economy is soaring and unemployment is at its lowest point in more than a decade. Despite this good news, far too many Americans find themselves out of the workforce or lacking the skills needed to land a good-paying job.

Yet there are more than six million job openings throughout the country.

Pro-Trump Super PAC Jumps Into Primary to Back Dan Donovan
America First Action is spending on direct mail and digital campaign

Rep. Dan Donovan, R-N.Y., is facing a primary challenge from former GOP Rep. Michael G. Grimm, R-N.Y. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A super PAC aligned with President Donald Trump is coming to the defense of New York Rep. Dan Donovan, who is facing a Republican primary threat from his predecessor, former Rep. Michael G. Grimm

America First Action will spend $166,000 on direct mail, phone banking, and a digital campaign to support Donovan in the Staten Island-based 11th District, according to figures from the group. 

Supreme Court Strikes Down State Ban on Polling Place Apparel
Century-old Minnesota law is similar to those in about nine other states

UNITED STATES - APRIL 12: U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington on Thursday, April 12, 2018. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Supreme Court on Thursday struck down Minnesota’s ban on political apparel worn by voters when they cast ballots as a violation of the First Amendment, ruling that the state’s definition of what can’t be worn at the polling place is too vague.

In a 7-2 opinion, the majority found that while the state’s election judges can strive to enforce the statute in an evenhanded manner when they decide what is political when they screen individuals at the entrance to polls, there are no “objective, workable standards.”

Analysis: The House Blue Wave Is Alive and Well
In the generic ballot and presidential approval numbers, fundamentals remain unchanged

Reports of the receding of a blue wave have been exaggerated, Rothenberg writes. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

For the last couple of months, I’ve heard from many quarters that the “blue wave” has dissipated. Meh. 

Advocates of that view usually point to the RealClearPolitics generic ballot average or Donald Trump’s job approval ratings, which suggest the president’s popularity has risen and the Democratic House advantage fallen.

Kelly Armstrong Wins GOP Primary for At-Large North Dakota Seat
Incumbent Rep. Ken Cramer is running for Senate

State Sen. Kelly Armstrong is likely coming to Congress after winning the Republican primary for North Dakota’s at-large seat. (Courtesy Kelly Armstrong)

State Sen. Kelly Armstrong won the Republican primary for North Dakota’s at-large House seat Tuesday night, and heads into November as the strong favorite.

With 9 percent of precincts reporting, he had 54 percent of the vote when The Associated Press called the race.

Justice Department Raises Burden of Proof for Asylum Seekers
DOJ has struggled to reduce backlog of more than 700,000 cases

Attorney General Jeff Sessions, here on the Hill in April, says the United States cannot make individual asylum judgments based on unsafe conditions in a given country. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Monday announced new limits on an individual’s ability to seek asylum in the United States, a decision likely to affect thousands of Central American migrants fleeing violence and poverty in the hopes of gaining refuge.

The decision by Sessions comes after months of deliberation over whether victims of domestic violence and other private criminal activity — as opposed to state-sponsored crime — qualify to receive asylum. Thousands of asylum-seekers from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras have made such claims in recent years as they arrived at the U.S.-Mexico border.