Category: congress

One lawyer is running for Congress and suing the president for…

One lawyer is running for Congress and suing the president for inciting violence at the same time

  • Dan Canon was fighting Trumpism long before he became a Congressional candidate.
  • In 2016, as America entered the era of Trump, Canon was among the first to use his experience and legal expertise to take on the violent, racially charged movement that manifested around Donald Trump by suing the then candidate for inciting violence.
  • “At the time that we filed suit, it did not look like Mr. Trump was even going to be the nominee for the Republican party, let alone president of the United States.” Canon told Mic in an interview. “But he doesn’t get to escape civil liability for the stuff that he did on the campaign trail. He still needs to be held accountable.” Read more. 

micdotcom: In August, Republicans will face angry town…

micdotcom:

In August, Republicans will face angry town halls

  • Expect Republicans to take heat from all sides this month. With Congress facing a tough legislative agenda on a tight timeline in September, members of Congress will spend August at home — close to voters.
  • Democrats blasted the results of Republicans’ first 200 days — amping up pressure on the GOP to deliver something big this fall. 
  • Progressive groups have promised to keep up the pressure on Republicans to not repeal the Affordable Care Act. They’re also planning protests around tax reform.
  • So far, only 13 Republicans in the House have announced August town halls, as tracked by Town Hall Project. Only two GOP senators have town halls scheduled. 
  • Of the 177 members of Congress who have not held a town hall since January, 150 are Republicans, according to the group. Read more (8/7/17)

Update: Only 13% of Republicans will hold August town halls, and grassroots groups aren’t standing for it

  • It’s no longer a surprise that members of Congress have little interest in meeting with their constituents. 
  • Fewer than half of Republicans in Congress have held a town hall in 2017, compared to more than 90% of Democrats.
  • Those numbers are according to Town Hall Project, a progressive grassroots group tracking voter forums nationwide.
  • Now, the group has found fewer members of Congress are holding town halls compared to the beginning of the year.
  • Only 13% are expected to go ahead with public meetings during the August recess. 38 of the 292 Republicans in Congress are expected to hold a total of 135 town hall meetings this month. Read more (8/10/17)

About 90% of U.S. House members don’t pay their internsIn March,…

About 90% of U.S. House members don’t pay their interns

  • In March, Mic found that fewer than half of U.S. senators pay their interns: Details are listed in a report you can read here
  • Then, this summer, Mic investigated the intern policies for all 435 voting members of the U.S. House of Representatives to see how the other chamber of Congress stacked up: The results were even starker.
  • Only about 10% of Republican House offices and 4% of Democrats’ offices — or about 8% overall — regularly offer paid internships. T
  • hese figures are roughly in line with those in a June report from labor advocacy group PayOurInterns. And even when you include those House members offering a mix of unpaid and paid internships, or who connect interns to outside funding or scholarships, the proportion with paid interns is still less than 14% of the total.
  • This is a big problem for anyone who cares about socioeconomic diversity in government, says Carlos Vera, a former unpaid congressional intern who in 2016 launched PayOurInterns. Read more or See the full list of House members (8/8/17)

Vulnerable Republican’s town hall shows health care could be the…

Vulnerable Republican’s town hall shows health care could be the GOP’s downfall in 2018

  • Wondering whether the Republicans’ failure to deliver on health care reform could be a political problem for the party in 2018? Look no further than Rep. Mike Coffman’s town hall on Tuesday night.
  • The Colorado congressman drew the ire of both Democratic and Republican constituents at a town hall meeting in his suburban Denver district, according to the Denver Post.
  • Liberal constituents were angry that Republicans were attempting to pass health care bills that would cause millions to lose their insurance, while conservative constituents were angry that Republicans have been unable to make good on their promise to repeal and replace Obamacare.
  • And that’s a worrisome sign for Coffman, who needs to carry his Republican base, while also winning support from Democratic voters in a district that voted for Hillary Clinton by a 9-point margin in the 2016 presidential election.
  • The same applies for the 22 other House Republicans who represent House districts Clinton won in 2016. Read more (8/2/17 10 AM)

Paul Ryan seems to have had it with Trump — if this bizarre…

Paul Ryan seems to have had it with Trump — if this bizarre online survey he created is any indication

  • It’s no secret that House Speaker Paul Ryan has some issues with the way that President Donald Trump is running the White House.
  • Now he appears to be venting his frustration in an odd online survey.
  • In his weekly online address, Ryan directed his supporters to check out a new website called didyouknow.gop. The URL directs users to a site that prompts them to take a quiz to gauge a user’s familiarity with legislation the House has passed this session. Read more (7/27/17)

Majority of voters want Democratic control of Congress in 2018…

Majority of voters want Democratic control of Congress in 2018 to serve as check on Donald Trump

  • By a wide margin, voters say they want Democrats to control Congress in 2018, according to a new ABC News/Washington Post poll.
  • More than half, or 52%, of registered voters said they want Democrats to control Congress to serve as a check on Trump, according to the poll. 
  • That’s 14 points more than the 38% who want Republicans to control Congress to support Trump and his agenda. Read more (7/19/17)

micdotcom: “We matter”: Dozens with pre-existing conditions…

micdotcom:

“We matter”: Dozens with pre-existing conditions stage D.C. sit-in over GOP health care bill

  • Marthella Johnson was born with one kidney. At a young age, the 42-year-old resident of Little Rock, Arkansas, developed kidney stones.
  • Before the Affordable Care Act, many insurers considered kidney stones a pre-existing condition and wouldn’t insure people like Johnson. 
  • After it went into effect, Johnson said she was able to buy insurance through her state’s marketplace.
  • That could change if Congressional Republicans get their way and the ACA is repealed. 
  • That’s why Johnson and more than 100 others came from at least 21 states to Washington, D.C., on Monday to protest a bill currently before the U.S. Senate that would repeal much of the ACA and replace it with a market-oriented system. Read more (7/10/17)

Update: Police arrest 80 at protests of Senate health care bill

  • Police arrested dozens of protesters Monday amid ongoing demonstrations against the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017.
  • Around 2 p.m. ET, Capitol Police responded to protests at more than a dozen locations in the House and Senate office buildings. (Statement)
  • “After officers arrived at the numerous scenes, they warned the demonstrators to cease and desist with their unlawful demonstration activities. Those who refused to cease and desist were placed under arrest and charged” with misdemeanor crowding, the statement read.
  • As of 4:30 p.m., police had arrested 80 protesters. Read more (7/10/17 5 PM)

Paul Ryan won’t hold public town halls because he doesn’t want…

Paul Ryan won’t hold public town halls because he doesn’t want to face protests

  • Paul Ryan won’t hold public town halls anymore because protesters have made it impossible for him to have a “civil, good, quiet conversation with constituents,” the House speaker told reporters in his home state of Wisconsin Friday.
  • “I don’t want to have a situation where we just have a screaming fest, a shouting fest, where people are being bused in from out of the district to get on TV because they’re yelling at somebody,” Ryan said. “That does nobody any good. What I want to do is have a civil, good, quiet conversation with constituents.”
  • The announcement came in response to a CBS News question at a Madison press conference about when he would hold an open town hall.
  • Rather than the open town halls he used to hold, Ryan said, he would instead use “new and creative” methods of meeting with constituents, such as “telephone town halls,” office hours and smaller “employee town halls.” Read more. (7/8/17, 12:22 PM)

Senate Republicans avoid July 4 parades — and their constituents…

Senate Republicans avoid July 4 parades — and their constituents — amid health care debate

  • Marching in local July 4 parades is a tradition for members of Congress.
  • But this July 4, a number of Senate Republicans sat out the festivities, deciding instead to lay low amid a fierce debate over the GOP’s health care plan that’s unpopular among voters in every state in the country.
  • Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) didn’t march in any July 4 parades in her home state, which voted for Trump by a 42-point margin, according to the New York Times
  • However, her Democratic colleague Joe Manchin, one of the most vulnerable Senate Democrats up for re-election in 2018, did march.
  • Also missing from home-state July 4 parades were Iowa GOP Sens. Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst, Colorado Republican Sen. Cory Gardner and Ohio GOP Sen. Rob Portman, the New York Times reported.
  • Republican senators who did march in parades were met by voters angry over the health care bill — which the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office estimates will lead 22 million people to lose coverage.
  • Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) was greeted by protesters at a July 4 event in McAllen, a town located on the state’s border with Mexico. Read more (7/5/17)

The House wants to put America’s independent election…

The House wants to put America’s independent election watchdog out of business

  • Congress is trying to slash funding for a small bipartisan agency that’s supposed to improve the way elections run.
  • This comes at the same moment watchdogs are calling out a new White House panel’s massive request for voters’ personal data.
  • The congressional notation, buried at the bottom of page 69 of the House Financial Services Appropriation Bill for spending in 2018, would yank the entire $4 million budget of the Election Assistance Commission.
  • The EAC was created in 2002 thanks to the Help America Vote Act, which Congress passed “to make sweeping reforms to the nation’s voting process.” The commission’s job includes certifying the hardware and software used to conduct elections. Advocates say the timing couldn’t be worse. Read more (6/30/17)