2020

Kasich Not Ruling out Presidential Run
Gives Trump an ‘incomplete’ on three-month report card

Ohio Gov. John Kasich did not rule out another presidential run (Michael Bonfigli/The Christian Science Monitor)

Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Friday refused to rule out running for president on Friday but said it’s “unlikely.”

“In terms of politics, I don’t know what the future brings, but I know it’s in front of me,” Kasich told reporters at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast in Washington.

Maine’s Susan Collins Weighing 2018 Gubernatorial Bid
The four-term senator is considering where she can do ‘the most good’

Maine Sen. Susan Collins may run for governor in 2018. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File photo)

There’s been no shortage of speculation that Maine Sen. Susan Collins would run for governor in 2018. But she addressed the subject head-on in an interview with WGAN radio Tuesday morning. 

“Let me say that I am looking at where I can do the most good for the people of Maine,” said Collins, according to a report in the Portland Press Herald. “In the Senate I now have significant seniority and that allows me to do a lot,” she said. 

Opinion: James Comey and the Art of the Shiv
FBI director has the credibility to oppose the White House

In his testimony Monday, James B. Comey dropped enough bombshells to solidify his reputation as the most significant FBI director since J. Edgar Hoover, Shapiro writes. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Late in Monday’s marathon hearing of the House Intelligence Committee, FBI Director James Comey reminded the nation that he was something of a hostile witness, reluctantly summoned to talk about Russia, Donald Trump and the 2016 campaign.

“I’d rather not be talking about this at all,” Comey said. “Now we are going to close our mouths and do our work.”

Warren Taps Reid Aide Orthman as Senior Political Adviser
Massachusetts native will work for home state senator

Kristen Orthman, right, will be a senior adviser to Sen. Elizabeth Warren. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren has brought on a top leadership aide to Sen. Harry Reid as a senior adviser to her political operation.

Kristen Orthman, who hails from the Boston suburbs, will be going to work for the Massachusetts Democrat after a run as communications director in the retired Nevada senator’s leadership office, as well as a senior adviser to the Nevada State Democratic Party ahead of the 2016 campaign cycle.

Trump Might Be Open to Earlier Freeze of Medicaid Expansion
Spokesman says president willing to listen to ideas on health plan

Trump, gesturing at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, is open to changes to the House health care bill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The White House appeared Friday to not rule out altering a Republican-crafted health care overhaul measure by accelerating a Medicaid expansion roll back, a move that could garner more conservative votes, although it could jeopardize support from GOP moderates and senators from states who have used the program to cover the uninsured.

The bill, which has been approved by two key House committees, would nix the 2010 health law’s expansion of the entitlement program in 2020. That’s not soon enough for many House conservatives, and a reason why the White House and GOP leaders appear to lack the 218 votes needed to send the overhaul measure to the Senate.

A Conversation With Democratic Strategist Kelly Ward
Ex-DCCC executive director looks back on 2016 election

Nathan L. Gonzales, elections analyst at Roll Call and publisher of Inside Elections, sits down with former DCCC executive director Kelly Ward. (Screenshot)

While the race for the 2018 midterms has effectively kicked off (Inside Elections and Roll Call have released initial race ratings for both the House and Senate), some of us are also still analyzing the 2016 election results.

I recently sat down with Kelly Ward, the former executive director of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, to get her take on how November went for the party and specifically for House Democrats. In December, she announced she was leaving the group for a new Democratic redistricting effort. 

Did McConnell Put Warren Right Where He Wants Her?
Senate GOP boss elevates left‘s hero, maybe because she‘s not strongest 2020 Democratic option

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell may be hoping that Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren becomes the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee in 2020. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sure, he’s a really buttoned-down guy working to prevent the Senate from getting totally bottled-up, but there are solid reasons to suspect Mitch McConnell wants a “Nevertheless, she persisted” hoodie as much as anyone.

The majority leader is obviously much more Brooks Brothers than Raygun. Still, he may well realize that his latest grandmaster move in the never-ending game of electoral chess requires ditching the rep stripe tie in favor of some printed-on-demand slogan swag.

White House Sees McAuliffe Playing Big Role for Dems in Post-Obama Era
Earnest floats notion next singular party leader is, for now, an unknown to most

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe on the floor of the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia at the Democratic National Convention last July. President Barack Obama sees him as a key part of the Democratic Party leadership team come Jan. 20. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Barack Obama expects the Democratic Party to transition to leadership by committee when he leaves office next Friday, and his top spokesman expects Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe will play a major role. 

Asked Thursday to whom Obama will articulate concerns or offer advice, Press Secretary Josh Earnest pointed to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California and the new Senate Minority Leader, Charles E. Schumer of New York, then added McAuliffe to the list.

Senate Democrats’ Stand on CR Might Signal Tactics Shift for 2018
Spending bill showdown focused on coal miners’ benefits

The stand by Senate Democrats, including Claire McCaskill of Missouri and Joe Manchin III of West Virginia, on retired coal miners’ benefits might augur similar tactics to come on behalf of working-class voters, with an eye toward their 2018 re-elections. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

It’s no secret that politics were in play as Senate Democrats who are on the ballot in 2018, many from states carried by Donald Trump, staged a shutdown showdown to highlight the plight of coal miners from states like West Virginia.

Sen. Joe Manchin III, the Mountain State’s senior senator, worked hard to hold up the continuing resolution that extended funding for federal agencies and programs through April 28 in a bid to get concessions on health care benefits for retired miners and their widows — the kind of folks who helped President-elect Donald Trump win the election.

Biden Tells Delawareans to Give Trump a Chance
Also says he has no intention of running for president in 2020

Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., center, has been all over the Capitol this week. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. told a room full of Delaware natives that they need to give President-elect Donald Trump a chance to succeed.

“Whether you’re for the Democratic nominee or the Republican nominee, this is an incredible, incredible country. And no matter what your politics, you have an obligation to support the president-elect,” Biden said. “You have an obligation to try and make it work.”