uncategorized

House Democrats apologize to India ambassador for Trump’s ‘amateurish’ claim about Kashmir
Trump claimed Indian prime minister asked him to mediate Kashmir dispute between his country and Pakistan

House Foreign Affairs Chairman Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., left, and Rep. Brad Sherman, D-Calif., attend a committee markup in the Rayburn Building on May 17, 2018. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democrats on the House Foreign Affairs Committee spoke with India’s ambassador to the U.S., Harsh Shringla, on Monday to apologize for President Donald Trump’s claim that he was asked by the Indian prime minister to mediate the Kashmir territorial conflict between his country and Pakistan.

“Everyone who knows anything about foreign policy in South Asia knows that India consistently opposes third-party mediation [regarding] Kashmir,” Rep. Brad Sherman of California tweeted Monday. “Everyone knows [Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi] would never suggest such a thing. Trump’s statement is amateurish and delusional. And embarrassing,” he wrote.

Mueller it over: Here are your options for Wednesday morning libations
From bottomless mimosas to business as usual, bars near the Capitol are bracing for the hearing(s) of the year

Former special counsel Robert Mueller will be on the Hill Wednesday. Where will you be? (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Wednesday is a big day for anyone celebrating the Mueller hearings — or National Tequila Day. Either way, you can start it with a drink, thanks to these Capitol Hill bars.

Both you and former special counsel Robert Mueller could potentially be looking at the worst Wednesday of your life, but lucky for you, overindulgence can serve as your excuse. Hawk ‘n’ Dove is opening its doors at 8:30 a.m. No funny drink names here — just bottomless mimosas and Bloody Marys for $20. 

Blood donations drop as memory of 2017 baseball shooting fades

A donor holds a foam Capitol dome during a blood drive in the foyer of the Rayburn Building in 2017, held to honor those injured when a gunman opened fire on a Republican team baseball practice. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The third annual congressional blood drive, hosted Monday by Virginia Reps. Gerald E. Connolly, Donald S. Beyer Jr. and Jennifer Wexton, raised 62 units this year. The total is down almost 72 percent from 2017, when the drive was started in the wake of a shooting at a GOP baseball practice. The following year, the blood drive collected 127 units.

“Donors are easier to engage in the wake of a tragedy,” according to Terri Craddock, the head of Inova Blood Donor Services, which collected Monday’s donations. Craddock added that the 62 units were “not bad” for a Monday in the middle of the summer.

Manchin pulls out high-speed zip line race over Capito
Senators kick off scouting jamboree in West Virginia

Sen. Joe Manchin prepares for the “Big Zip” on Monday. (Courtesy Joe Manchin’s office)

Sometimes the race goes neither to the swiftest nor the strongest ... but the heftiest.

West Virginia’s two senators kicked off the 24th World Scout Jamboree with a friendly bipartisan zip line race.

Republican group apologizes for mocking congresswomen as ‘Jihad Squad’
Illinois Republican Party chairman condemns social media post’s ‘bigoted rhetoric’

From left, Reps. Ayanna S. Pressley, D-Mass., Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., and Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., conduct a news conference in the Capitol Visitor Center responding to negative comments by President Trump that were directed at the freshmen House Democrats last week. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Republican Party leaders in Illinois apologized over the weekend for a Facebook post that smeared the four congresswomen at the center of the President Donald Trump’s recent verbal attacks as the “Jihad Squad.” 

An image shared by the Republican County Chairmen’s Association of Illinois Friday depicts the first-term lawmakers, all women of color, as gun-toting vigilantes in a mock movie poster. In doctored images, Rep. Ayanna S. Pressley aims a handgun at the viewer while Rep. Rashida Tlaib contorts her face in a scream. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wears a red dress that resembles a Bond movie costume, an explosion burning at her feet. Rep. Ilhan Omar hovers over the trio, a firearm at her side. 

When Mueller time comes at 8:30 in the morning
What’s happening in D.C. the week of July 22-28

Special counsel Robert Mueller is headed to the Hill this week, and D.C. bars are opening their doors early. Really early. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Virginia Reps. Gerald E. Connolly, Donald S. Beyer and Jennifer Wexton are hosting the third annual congressional blood drive on Monday. Stop by the Rayburn foyer from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. to donate whole blood, red cells, platelets and plasma. The drive got its start after 2017’s shooting at a GOP baseball practice, and more than 300 donors have rolled up their sleeves since then, according to the hosts. 

A theatrical tribute to the late Texas governor Ann Richards is running at Arena Stage through Aug. 11. The one-woman show is billed as a “no-holds-barred comedy chronicling Richards’ legacy and how she was determined to make her mark on the world.” A feminist known for her quick wit, Richards’ most famous quip was a dig at then-Vice President George H.W. Bush during the 1988 Democratic National Convention: “Poor George, he can’t help it. He was born with a silver foot in his mouth.” The Bush family would get its revenge when Dubya thwarted Richards’ bid for reelection as Texas governor in 1994.

Trump seeks Supreme Court help on building border wall quickly
Trump administration officials want Supreme Court help to build border barrier before Congress thwarts them Oct. 1

A border fence is seen near the Rio Grande which marks the boundary between Mexico and the United States on February 09, 2019 in Eagle Pass, Texas. The border has become a point of contention as the U.S. President Donald Trump wants to build a wall and the Democrats in Congress are asking for other border security measures. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Trump administration officials want the Supreme Court to help them hurry up and spend up to $2.5 billion to construct a barrier on the U.S.-Mexico border before Congress thwarts them with new spending legislation on Oct. 1.

The administration argues it needs a ruling from the Supreme Court by July 26 so it can spend money on border wall construction before the fiscal 2019 spending law lapses on Sept. 30.

Omar’s office facade gets covered with notes of support
Notes offer messages of support after a Trump rally crowd chanted ‘send her back!’

Visitors write inspiring notes outside of the office of Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., after attacks from President Trump days before at the Longworth Building at the Capitol on Friday, July 19, 2019. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Ilhan Omar’s congressional office facade grew more colorful as people walked by her office Friday and posted blue, purple, pink and yellow notes of encouragement in the form of a heart. It’s a show of support after a long week of back-and-forth with President Donald Trump and his supporters, who chanted “send her back” at a rally earlier this week.

As a response to the rally chants and rhetoric from the president widely seen as racist, the anti-war group Code Pink organized a day of solidarity outside the Minnesota Democrat’s office. The group’s organizers were outside the office asking people to sign a note for Omar and gathering notes from those in the House office building cafeterias.

Lawmakers hint at regulatory models for Facebook cryptocurrency
Libra: ‘Which is it, fish or fowl?’

“This looks exactly like an exchange-traded fund,” said Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn., (File photo by Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

House members suggested Wednesday that Facebook Inc.‘s proposed cryptocurrency could be deemed an exchange-traded fund, a currency or a commodity, all of which could require some degree of regulatory oversight.

“What we’re struggling with is: What are you?” said Democratic Colorado Rep. Ed Perlmutter summing up a four-hour House Financial Services Committee grilling of a company executive about the proposed cryptocurrency known as Libra.

Mnuchin says there is a topline agreement on spending caps and debt limit
Treasury secretary says talks continue on offsets and structure of a deal

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Thursday that the White House, Senate and House have an agreement on a two-year debt ceiling increase. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Thursday that agreement has been reached on spending levels for fiscal 2020 and fiscal 2021 as well as a two-year extension of the debt limit.

“The good news is we’ve reached an agreement between the administration, the House and the Senate on topline numbers for both year one and year two. We’re now discussing offsets as well as certain structural issues. And we’ve agreed as part of that deal there would be a long-term, two-year debt ceiling increase,” Mnuchin said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” “So, I think, all of our first choice is to reach an overall agreement and we’re working hard to do that. But if for whatever reason we don’t get there in time, I am encouraging a debt ceiling increase.”