Todd Ruger

McConnell, Graham leave room for Barr to withhold parts of Mueller report
Other congressional leaders, Trump call on attorney general to release full report to public

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell left it up to the discretion of Attorney General William P. Barr to keep some parts of the Mueller report out of the public eye. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

While Democratic lawmakers and many of their Republican colleagues called on Attorney General William P. Barr to publicly release the full Mueller report, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham left room for Barr to keep parts of it under wraps at the Justice Department.

Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III delivered the final report on his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 elections and possible collusion between Russia and the Donald Trump campaign to Barr on Friday.

‘We’re not a subpoena production factory’: Nadler moving carefully on obstruction probe
House Judiciary Committee has requested documents from 81 people and entities tied to Trump for it obstruction investigation

Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., is investigating possible obstruction of justice by President Donald Trump and his associates. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Documents requested from key associates of Donald Trump as part of the House Judiciary Committee’s investigation into obstruction of justice and corruption are beginning to trickle in, the top Democrat on the committee indicated Thursday.

About half of the 81 people and entities connected to Trump who received letters and document requests in February from Chairman Jerrold Nadler have been in touch with the New York Democrat’s staff about complying with the committee’s probe.

Another Trump judicial nominee backs away from college writings
Kenneth Lee’s testimony came hours before Senate confirmation of Neomi Rao, who had also backed away from college articles

Neomi Rao, nominee to be U.S. circuit judge for the District of Columbia Circuit, takes her seat for her confirmation hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Another of President Donald Trump’s appeals court picks distanced himself from college writings Wednesday, including articles about AIDS, LGBT rights, affirmative action and sexual harassment that raised concerns from Democrats.

“When you’re 18 or 19 you think you know everything, even though you really don’t,” Kenneth Lee, a nominee for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, told the Senate Judiciary Committee. “When you’re young you think being snarky is being witty, as you get older I think you realize it frankly comes off as insensitive or tone deaf. I’ve learned that.”

Justices break the ice, err glass, at budget hearing
Alito and Kagan make their debut before House Appropriations subcommittee

Justices Samuel A. Alito Jr. and Elena Kagan testify about the Supreme Court’s fiscal 2020 budget at a hearing Thursday before the House Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

At the start of a House hearing Thursday on the Supreme Court’s budget, Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. knocked over a full water glass, which shattered on the witness table with a sound that would make any foley artist proud.

“Not off to a very good start,” Alito said with a smile, holding the bottom of the broken glass. “We’re deducting that,” a member of the House Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Subcommittee quipped from the Democratic side of the dais.

House launches broad document request on Trump administration
The request is the clearest sign yet of the broad scope of oversight Democrats intend to pursue

Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., holds a press conference with House Judiciary Committee Democrats to announce new legislation to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation on April 12, 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House Judiciary Committee on Monday unveiled a sweeping request for documents in its congressional investigation into President Donald Trump on allegations of obstruction of justice, corruption and other abuses of power — the clearest sign yet of the broad scope of oversight Democrats intend to pursue.

House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., announced that letters went to 81 agencies, entities and individuals believed to have information on Trump, his associates and members of the Trump administration. The effort is to “begin building a record,” Nadler said, because Trump has accountability for “near-daily attacks on our basic legal, ethical, and constitutional rules and norms.”

Justices to make rare appearance before appropriators
Samuel Alito and Elena Kagan will testify about high court’s budget

Elena Kagan, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, walks through Statuary Hall to the House chamber for President Donald Trump's State of the Union Address to a joint session of Congress in the Capitol on Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Two Supreme Court justices plan to testify before Congress next week about the high court’s budget for the first time in four years, amid legislative efforts to overhaul ethics and transparency policies of the judicial branch.

Justices Samuel A. Alito Jr. and Elena Kagan are set to appear at a public hearing Thursday before the House Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Subcommittee. Alito was appointed by President George W. Bush in 2006 and Kagan was appointed by President Barack Obama in 2010.

Rao nomination advances amid pressure on freshman senator
Missouri’s Josh Hawley felt the full force of his party’s judicial confirmation machine

Republican Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

In the days before the Senate Judiciary Committee advanced Neomi Rao’s nomination to the federal appeals court in Washington, Missouri Republican freshman Josh Hawley felt the full pressure of his party’s judicial confirmation machine.

“I know that there are some inside this building, and outside of it, who would prefer that I do as I’m instructed and go along to get along,” Hawley said before the committee’s Thursday vote. “And I’m sorry to disappoint them, but that is not going to happen.”

House passes gun legislation with GOP add-on
Chamber passes first standalone gun measure in years

Rep. Mike Thompson, D-Calif., has been a lead advocate of the measure to mandate background checks for gun purchases. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Democrats on Wednesday succeeded in pushing through the chamber a bill to expand background checks for firearm sales, but not before some procedural gamesmanship from Republicans.

Last year, Congress approved two gun-related measures about background checks and school safety in a spending bill. But Wednesday’s 240-190 vote mostly along party lines was the first time in decades that the House passed a standalone gun control bill.

Democrats see loss of Senate power in latest judicial vote
Both home-state senators opposed appointment of Eric D. Miller to 9th Circuit

Eric D. Miller is the first appeals court judge confirmed over the objections of both home state senators since at least 1956. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Senate confirmed another of President Donald Trump’s appeals court nominees Tuesday evening, in a vote that Democrats say represents further erosion of senators’ power to influence who is appointed to federal courts from their states.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on the floor that Eric Miller’s law career makes him “well prepared” for a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, which is based in San Francisco and hears cases from nine states. Miller, confirmed 53-46, will fill a spot that has traditionally been associated with a nominee from Washington state.

‘I still live in my hood,’ Ocasio-Cortez refutes NY Post report that she may not live in her district
The tabloid interviewed neighbors near the address listed on her voter registration, who said they hadn’t seen her

Freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., walks to the Senate floor with other House members on Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019. (Tom Williams/ CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez refuted a New York Post story that implied she may not live in her 14th District, but the Democrat said she wouldn’t release her address because of safety concerns. 

A reporter for the tabloid interviewed two neighbors of the Bronx condo listed on Ocasio-Cortez’ voter registration. The neighbors said they had not seen the New York congresswoman entering and exiting the apartment.