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News Archive

Congressman Mum on Illinois Senate Race

One of three politicians who Democrats say is considering a challenge to Sen. Mark S. Kirk, R-Ill., remained mum about his plans in an interview with CQ Roll Call last week — but he did not rule out the possibility.

HOH Word of the Week: Clinker

“Clinker. n. An amendment or rider to a bill that is so out of place that it stands out like a wrong musical note. In November 1973, President Nixon complained about “a couple of clinkers” in the Alaska pipeline bill with which business groups were unhappy. See also joker.

Lighting the Capitol Quip Christmas Tree

All Congress wants for Christmas is, what exactly? That brings us to this week’s Capitol Quip.

How Big Is the Ted Cruz Caucus?

It’s a question that will prove crucial next year when Mitch McConnell takes the reins of a new Senate: Just how big is the Ted Cruz caucus?

Saturday Session a Preview of What's to Come

At the end of a rare Saturday session, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., was direct when asked if Democrats, led by outgoing Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., had gotten the better of Republicans.

Senate Rejects Cruz Point of Order on Obama's Immigration Action

Updated 11:05 p.m. | Ted Cruz’s proxy vote against President Barack Obama’s executive action ended in an overwhelming defeat Saturday night, splitting the GOP in half.

Merry Chromnimas! | Capitol Quip

Thanks to the readers who contributed captions for last week’s Capitol Quip contest. Here’s the winning entry, as voted by readers of Heard on the Hill.

Menendez Files ISIS Force Amendment to 'Cromnibus' Despite No Chance of Vote

The top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee thinks the current Congress should stick around long enough to consider an Authorization for Use of Military Force against the Islamic State, and he’s reiterating that as the Senate wraps up its work.

John Dingell Fractures Hip

The Dean of the House, retiring Rep. John Dingell, fractured his hip and will not be able to travel for weeks, according to his wife Debbie.

Senate Avoids Shutdown, Passes Cromnibus in Bipartisan Vote

Updated 11:26 p.m. | The Senate has avoided a government shutdown, easily clearing the $1.1 trillion “cromnibus” funding the government through September.

Reid Announces Weekend Votes After Blockade (Updated)

Updated Dec. 13, 12:15 a.m. | Conservatives stalled action on the Senate floor late Friday as leaders scrambled to wrap up the 113th Congress.

House Passes Second CR in Near-Empty Chamber

The House quietly passed another continuing resolution Friday that would fund the government through Wednesday, providing the Senate more time, if needed, to pass the longer-term “cromnibus” — but also raising questions about the procedure for a bill that was unexpectedly passed in a nearly empty House chamber.

Congress Approving $721 Million for Syrian Rebels

Congress is in the process of allowing the Pentagon to spend nearly $721 million to recruit, train and equip a rebel army in Syria, and lawmakers have set strict limits on how the money can be spent, according to officials and documents.

Senate GOP Leaders Want to Wrap Up Lame Duck ASAP

Senate Republican leaders are pushing to wrap up the lame-duck session as soon as possible to limit the time available to outgoing Majority Leader Harry Reid to clear nominations.

Issa Subpoenas Gruber's Contracts, Documents on Obamacare

You didn’t really think House Republicans were done with Jonathan Gruber, did you?

Coburn Reprises 2011 Senate Rules Debate

Sen. Tom Coburn’s last stand includes a reprise of a 2011 floor debate that helped lay the groundwork for last year’s “nuclear option” fight.

Paul and Rubio Spar Over Foreign Policy, ISIS AUMF

The nation may have gotten a little taste of 2016 Republican presidential politics Thursday as Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky squared off with Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida on foreign policy.

Military May Have to Tell Lawmakers Before Filling the Tank

The Senate is expected to pass the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill (HR 3979) today, legislation that would require the military to notify congressional committees about certain biofuel expenditures.

Defense Authorization Set to Clear, But Spending Bill's Outlook Still Cloudy

Maintaining a tradition that has lasted more than half a century, the Senate is poised to clear for President Barack Obama’s signature Friday afternoon the annual defense authorization bill.

Murray Announces Intent to Take HELP

Patty Murray confirmed Friday that she plans to succeed Tom Harkin as the top Democrat on the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee next year, where she is expected to play a prominent role defending the health care law and trying to forge compromises on stalled education policy.

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