Emily Kopp

Anti-vaxxer allegedly threatened to kill Rep. Frederica Wilson
Suspect is a Pentagon contractor who had access to sensitive information

A grand jury in Maryland has indicted a Department of Defense contractor on one felony count of threatening a member of Congress.

Darryl Albert Varnum, who works out of the headquarters of the U.S. Defense Information Systems Agency, allegedly left a threatening voicemail for a lawmaker one evening in late June, according to court records.

'Send her back' chant chills Washington
Some Republicans criticize crowd at Trump rally; McConnell says Trump is ‘onto something’ with attacks on progressive ‘squad’

The words “send her back” briefly drowned out the President Donald Trump’s speech in Greenville, North Carolina, last night, and quickly sent chills through Washington.

Trump carried his screed against Rep. Ilhan Omar from Twitter on to the stage of a campaign stop Wednesday night, prompting supporters to respond that he should “send her back” to the country she emigrated from as a child. The moment stoked fear about both the safety of the congresswoman and about the ramifications of the nation’s most powerful politician inflaming racial and religious hatred.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to meet one-on-one
A rift between Pelosi and Ocasio-Cortez has deepened in recent weeks

Resolution vote forces House Republicans to pick a side on Trump’s racist attack
Several Republicans have publicly criticized president’s tirade, while others defended him

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is moving forward with a resolution condemning President Donald Trump’s repeated calls for four non-white members of Congress to “go back” to “the crime infested countries from which they came.” 

Pelosi announced late Monday night that the House will debate the resolution Tuesday afternoon and the vote will occur at 7 p.m.

Democrats condemn Trump’s racist tweets, congressional Republicans mostly silent
House Rules Committee Chairman Jim McGovern calls his GOP colleagues ‘cowards’

Updated 5:59 p.m. | While Democrats were united in their condemnation of President Donald Trump’s call Sunday for four members of Congress to “go back” to “the crime infested countries from which they came,” Republicans on Monday were slow to publicly comment on the president’s tirade. 

On the Republican side of the aisle, condemnations of Trump for calling four of their colleagues unworthy to serve in Congress because of their non-European heritage were slow to materialize. Even as conservative pundits decried the president’s targeting of four progressive lawmakers — Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna S. Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan — as an ugly attack rooted in racism, not a political critique. 

Former Rep. Chaka Fattah to seek reduction in 10-year sentence
An appeals court scrapped four of Fattah's 29 corruption charges in May

Former Pennsylvania Rep. Chaka Fattah will ask a judge Friday for a reduction in his 10-year prison stay for corruption.

Fattah, who has served 2½ years in a medium security prison in western Pennsylvania, will argue his sentence should be cut because an appeals court recently tossed out convictions on four public corruption charges, The Associated Press reported.

Competitive Tennessee Senate primary likely after Haslam decision not to run
Hagerty and Kustoff could run, while Green and Black have passed on the race

Former Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam announced Wednesday he will sit out the race for Senate this cycle, teeing up a competitive Republican primary in the contest to succeed retiring GOP incumbent Lamar Alexander.

Haslam, 60, described his choice to forgo another bid for public office as “the hardest vocational decision of my life” in a letter published in The Tennessean

Rep. Ilhan Omar calls Fox News host Tucker Carlson a ‘racist fool’
Carlson made the Minnesota lawmaker the target of an anti-immigrant diatribe

Rep. Ilhan Omar dismissed Fox News’ Tucker Carlson as a “racist fool” after the TV personality made her the target of an anti-immigrant diatribe.

“Not gonna lie, it’s kinda fun watching a racist fool like this weeping about my presence in Congress,” the Minnesota Democrat tweeted Tuesday night.

Former Illinois Rep. Bobby Schilling announces he’s running in Iowa
Former congressman moved across the river from his old district in 2017

Former Illinois Rep. Bobby Schilling announced that he’s running for the open seat in Iowa’s 2nd District, across the Mississippi River from his old district.

Iowa Democratic Rep. Dave Loebsack announced in April that he would retire at the end of his seventh term next year. The race could be competitive: President Donald Trump carried the district in 2016.

Rep. Duncan Hunter deletes photo alongside man making ‘OK’ gesture
Congressman criticized for image of man making sign that has been appropriated to mean ‘white power’

Rep. Duncan Hunter deleted a photo of himself at a Fourth of July parade in his district standing beside a man making an “OK” gesture with his fingers — a symbol that in recent years has been appropriated by the far-right to mean “WP,” or “white power” — following questions from a reporter.

Hunter posted a photo posing with the man and other red-white-and-blue-clad parade-goers to his official congressional Twitter and Facebook pages last week. Following scrutiny of the photo by local media, progressive activists and a political opponent, Hunter’s campaign team first defended the “OK” hand symbol as innocuous. But the California Republican removed the photo from his social media pages Monday following questions from Roll Call about a 2017 video of the man reported to have made the gesture in the photo.

Rep. Duncan Hunter’s ‘deep state’ defense falls apart
Judge unconvinced by defense’s argument that negative headlines will poison San Diego jury

Rep. Duncan Hunter’s bid to dismiss the corruption charges against him by alleging a “deep state” conspiracy by U.S. attorneys fell apart Monday when it was revealed that Hunter’s lead attorney had attended the same Democratic fundraiser he said biased prosecutors. 

U.S. District Judge Thomas Whelan ruled against a motion filed by Hunter’s team, arguing the case should be relocated or dismissed because two of the prosecutors attended a 2015 fundraiser for Hillary Clinton who was running for president, Bloomberg reported. Their attendance, Hunter’s attorneys said, meant they would be biased in the case against Hunter — an early supporter of Trump.

Woman drops sexual abuse case against Rep. Tony Cárdenas
Cárdenas says ‘the truth prevailed’; plaintiff says she wishes she would have chosen a better lawyer

The sexual abuse case against Democratic Rep. Tony Cárdenas reached a resolution, but the reason remains unknown to the public.

The woman who accused Cárdenas of molesting her as a 16-year-old dropped her civil case against the congressman on Wednesday. A Los Angeles Superior Court judge granted her request that it be dismissed with prejudice, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Democrat wants Trump to pay if ‘authoritarian-style’ July 4 event damages infrastructure
Virginia Rep. calls on the president to reach into his own pocket if D.C. streets or bridges require repairs

President Donald Trump should pay out of his own pocket for any infrastructure damage incurred by rolling 70-ton tanks onto the National Mall, according to the Democratic congressman who represents the D.C. suburbs in Virginia.

Rep. Don Beyer described Trump’s plan to showcase tanks during the city’s Fourth of July celebration as “an authoritarian-style marshal display” in a statement Tuesday. He called on the president to reach into his own pocket if D.C. streets or bridges require repairs from having to handle the massive vehicles. 

DC to Trump: ‘Tanks but no tanks’
Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton says president is trying to turn July Fourth into ‘Bastille Day’

District of Columbia Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton forcefully pushed back on plans by President Donald Trump to include U.S. Army tanks in the Fourth of July celebration on the National Mall, saying that “can’t happen.”

Norton, along with D.C. officials, has expressed concern that the 60-ton armored vehicles could grind up the National Mall and restyle a patriotic “hometown celebration,” which attracts thousands of tourists each year and is broadcast live on national television, into a nationalistic presidential rally.

As Democrats head for border tour, reports emerge of agents ridiculing them on Facebook
Group to tour Customs and Border Patrol center likened to ‘torture facilities’

More than a dozen Democrats on Monday are visiting a U.S. Customs and Border Patrol facility accused of child neglect and filthy conditions as reports emerged that border agents ridiculed them in a secret Facebook group.

Two Latina lawmakers slated to visit the center, Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Veronica Escobar of Texas, were targets of sexist and racist derision in the Facebook group, according to an investigation by ProPublica. The group has 9,500 members, a number commensurate to nearly half of all agents who make up the CBP, though it’s not clear that every member of the group is a border agent.

Rep. Matt Gaetz to be investigated by House Ethics for tweet apparently threatening Cohen
Move comes after Florida Republican chose not to submit to an interview

Rep. Matt Gaetz faces an inquiry by the House Ethics Committee for a tweet that appeared to threaten President Donald Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen with blackmail.

The House Ethics Committee announced Friday it would establish an investigative subcommittee to review whether the Florida Republican, a staunch ally of the president, sought to intimidate Cohen before he testified before the House Oversight and Reform panel. The Ethics Committee had sought an interview with Gaetz, but he declined, triggering the investigation.

Rep. Matt Gaetz will press charges in ‘milkshaking’ incident
A cup filled with red liquid sailed through the air and hit Gaetz as he left a town hall earlier this month.

Rep. Matt Gaetz will press charges against the woman who allegedly hurled a drink cup at him, the Florida congressman said Thursday.

“I am going to press charges ... I think it’s really important to send a message that we as conservatives have a right to our views, just like anybody else has a right to their views,” Gaetz said in an interview on Fox news the night before.

Rep. Duncan Hunter’s affairs with congressional staff raise sexual harassment concerns
California Republican denies groping another staffer at a 2014 event

Republican Party leaders have demurred on whether Rep. Duncan Hunter should resign in light of revelations that he pursued relationships with two congressional staffers, including one of his own aides.

But that does not mean allegations that the California Republican had “intimate relationships” — as U.S. attorneys described them in a recent court filing — with two staffers, including a direct subordinate, will not trigger consequences on Capitol Hill.

Oversight Democrats investigate whether CDC and HIV prevention drugmaker made a deal
Trump touted Gilead’s donation of Truvada for PrEP as a step towards ending the HIV epidemic for good

For uninsured people at risk of HIV, the announcement last month that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had secured an annual donation of more than 2 million bottles of the HIV prevention drug Truvada for PrEP likely came as welcome news.

For many, paying out-of-pocket for the $2,000 per month drug is unaffordable.

Rep. Susan Wild honors late partner in a tearful floor speech
‘Why am I sharing this personal story? Because I want everyone to know that mental health issues know no boundaries,‘ she said

Rep. Susan Wild honored her late partner in a tearful floor speech Tuesday night.

Wild shared that her longtime partner, attorney Kerry Acker, died by suicide exactly one month ago. She made the revelation in a speech on the House floor during a stretch of voting on a bill to direct emergency spending to the U.S. Southern Border.