Rema Rahman

Chaffetz Departure Opens Coveted Oversight Chairmanship
Freedom Caucus members in panel’s leadership poised to make a play for seat

As Chairman Jason Chaffetz suggested Wednesday he may not finish his congressional term, top Republicans on the Oversight and Government Reform Committee mostly avoided weighing in on whether they would seek the seat under a GOP White House.

The Utah Republican unabashedly used the position of being the House’s top inquisitor to become nationally prominent in a coveted seat. But he did so under a Democratic administration that the House GOP despised.

Chaffetz Won’t Seek Re-Election in 2018
Outspoken Utah Republican won’t rule out run for governor in 2020

Rep. Jason Chaffetz announced Wednesday that he will not run for re-election to his House seat or any other political office in 2018. But he’s not ruling out one in 2020.

The Utah Republican said in a Facebook post that there were “no ulterior motives” behind the move, and he was confident he would still be re-elected by wide margins, had he decided otherwise.

Classified Information Complicates Nunes Ethics Probe
Results of investigation may not be revealed at all

The outcome of an ethics investigation surrounding House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes’ disclosure of classified information might never see the light of day, depending on how it’s handled.

The results of that inquiry by the House Ethics Committee may not be revealed for months — or at all — because it centers around disclosure of classified information, ethics experts say.

Pelosi: Fire Sean Spicer Over Holocaust Statements
White House press secretary faces blow back for denying chemical weapons used in WWII

Updated at 7:13 p.m. | House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is calling on President Donald Trump to fire his press secretary Sean Spicer for remarks he made Tuesday that suggested Adolf Hitler did not use chemical weapons during World War II.

Spicer was responding to a question during the daily White House briefing about Russia’s relationship to Bashar Assad’s Syrian regime and the support it has gotten from President Vladimir Putin.

Report: Marino To Become Trump’s Drug Czar
Pennsylvania Republican finalizing transition to president’s team

Rep. Tom Marino is preparing to leave his House seat to become director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, a position effectively known as the country’s drug czar.

Moderates Dismiss Heritage Action 'Cheap Shot'
Conservative group missive targeted Tuesday Group on health care

Several House Republicans blew off an attack by Heritage Action Wednesday that blamed the moderate arm of the GOP for stalling negotiations to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law.

The conservative group blasted members of the Tuesday Group for opposing talks “not based on policy, [but] because they don’t want to repeal Obamacare.” Heritage Action also suggested it might work to oppose those members running for re-election in 2018, but didn’t announce any ad buys.

GOP: No ‘Artificial Deadline’ on Health Care Vote
House Republicans giving repeal and replace another chance

“Sooner rather than later” — that’s the prevailing sentiment among House Republicans as to when their chamber should vote on a bill to partially repeal and replace the 2010 health care law if tweaks being discussed will move enough “no” votes to “yes.”

Talk of the House working through the Easter recess to get the bill done is overblown, members said, but they noted that if an agreement can be reached quickly, there remains a possibility the scheduled Thursday afternoon start of the two-week recess could get pushed back to accommodate a vote later this week.

House Democrats Take Wait-and-See Approach
Minority party keeping cards close on supporting GOP agenda

House Democrats are taking a two-pronged approach for leverage in a divided but still Republican-led Congress: Let the majority duke it out among themselves, and wait and see whether to offer votes when there is not enough GOP support to advance key legislation. 

The fissures in the GOP were on full display in late March when Speaker Paul D. Ryan pulled a bill that aimed to repeal and replace parts of the 2010 health care law because it failed to get support from the conservative and moderate wings of the party.

GOP, White House Sticking With Devin Nunes
House Intelligence chairman under fire for questionable conduct

House Republicans and the White House continue to back House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, saying there is no merit to Democrats’ demands for him to recuse himself from leading an investigation into potential Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Many Republicans on the Intelligence Committee have ducked questions on the topic. New York Rep. Peter T. King was an exception; he said there was no reason to lose confidence in Nunes or to think that a series of strange incidents concerning the chairman created a perception problem.

Democrats Delight in GOP Health Care Defeat
Pelosi says party is glad to own 2010 health law

Cheers went out from the Democratic cloakroom Friday when the news broke that Republicans were pulling their health care bill from the floor, and Democrats on the floor chanted “vote! vote!” as the majority lacked the votes opted to pass it. 

The minority party was more subdued at a press conference afterward, but House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and her leadership team still delighted in their victory.

Cummings: Nunes Should be Investigated for Trump Revelations
Ranking Democrat on Oversight Committee says intel chairman ‘scuttled’ investigation

Rep. Elijah Cummings suggested on Thursday that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes should be investigated for revealing that President Donald Trump’s campaign associates may have been caught up in a surveillance net.

Cummings, D-Md., the ranking member of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee said Nunes, R-Calif., acted inappropriately when he revealed publicly Wednesday that he had reviewed intelligence reports that had “nothing to do with” the Trump campaign or Russia but did show intelligence agencies had collected information about the campaign.

Meadows: Freedom Caucus Open to Changes
White House negotiating with Republicans opposing health bill

By Rema Rahman, Lindsey McPherson and Joe Williams/CQ Roll Call

Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows said Wednesday he and members of the conservative group are open to negotiating changes to a health care bill that is struggling to gain enough votes by Republicans to pass the House.

Conservatives Ask to Start Over on GOP Health Plan
Leadership-crafted legislation remains short of majority

By Rema Rahman and Lindsey McPherson, CQ Roll Call

Conservatives are flexing their muscles in Congress as they get closer to securing the “no” votes that would sink the GOP leadership-crafted bill to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law.

House Intel Seeks Clarity From Comey on Wiretap Claims
Lawmakers want answers on investigation into Russian meddling, surveillence

House Intelligence Committee members are looking for FBI Director James Comey to put an “exclamation point” on Monday to unfounded claims made by President Donald Trump alleging the Republican president was wiretapped by his Democratic predecessor.

The panel will hold its first public hearing on a widespread investigation into Russian meddling in the U.S. presidential election last year.

White House Rejects Intel Committee Wiretap Conclusions
Press secretary instead lashes out at press

By REMA RAHMAN and JOHN T. BENNETT CQ Roll Call

The White House on Thursday blasted the House and Senate Intelligence committees that deduced there was no evidence to support President Donald Trump’s claim that he had been wiretapped by the prior administration at Trump Tower during the election.

Senate Intel Leaders: No Wiretapping at Trump Tower
Lawmakers and House members find no evidence to back Trump’s claim

The top two lawmakers on the Senate Intelligence Committee joined their House counterparts on Thursday to confirm that there is no evidence to back President Donald Trump’s claim that he was under surveillance by the prior administration.

Chairman Richard M. Burr, a North Carolina Republican, and Vice Chairman Mark Warner, a Virginia Democrat, said in a joint statement there were “no indications” to back up Trump’s assertion.

Intel Chairman: No Evidence Trump Tower Wiretapped
Bispartisan lawmakers say there’s no evidence to president’s claim

Top lawmakers on the House Intelligence Committee said Wednesday there is no evidence to back up President Donald Trump’s claim that his predecessor wiretapped Trump Tower during the election.

Chairman Devin Nunes, who was part of Trump’s transition team, said he has not learned of any basis to the claim, as the committee conducts an investigation into Russian involvement in U.S. elections and leaks to the public of intelligence information.

Even With Snow, Health Care Rallies Press On
Democrats and Republicans expected at two events on Capitol Hill

Members of Congress are expected to join dueling rallies in Washington this week organized by advocacy groups on opposite ends of the health care debate despite the threat of a late-winter snow storm prompting cancellations on Capitol Hill.

Democrats, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and Sen. Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire are scheduled to join the Save My Care event on Tuesday morning during what is projected to be peak hours of the storm.

Pelosi: ‘If Hillary Had Won, I was Ready to Go Home’
Minority Leader said Democratic president would ensure health care left alone

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Friday that had Hillary Clinton won the presidency, the California Democrat would have left her longtime position in Congress because a Democratic White House would have ensured the 2010 health care law stayed in place.

“If Hillary had won, I was ready to go home,” Pelosi said. “If she were there, then I would not worry about that.” 

Despite Conservative Unrest, Ryan Steadfast on Health Effort
House speaker confident bill will pass despite GOP reservations

By REMA RAHMAN AND LINDSEY MCPHERSON, CQ ROLL CALL

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan remained confident Wednesday that a repeal and replace health care bill in its current form would get enough votes to pass Congress despite some conservatives who flatly said the bill does not have the 218 votes needed to pass.