breaking-news

Texas Judge Strikes Down 2010 Health Care Law
Law is unconstitutional without “individual mandate” penalty, judge rules

Supporters of the 2010 health care law rally outside the Supreme Court in June 2015 as they await a court decision related to the law. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A federal judge late Friday struck down the 2010 health care law, siding with a group of conservative states that argued the law is unconstitutional after Republicans in Congress eliminated a key part of it.

Judge Reed O’Connor, of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, sided with Texas and the other states, saying the law cannot stand without the so-called individual mandate to get coverage, which Republicans effectively ended as part of a 2017 tax overhaul . Texas and its partner states argued that the requirement was not severable from the rest of the law and sought an injunction beginning in 2019.

Donald Trump Names Mick Mulvaney Acting Chief of Staff
OMB director will replace John Kelly at the end of the year, on an interim basis

OMB Director Mick Mulvaney will take over as acting White House chief of staff. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump announced Friday that Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney will be the acting White House chief of staff, starting in the new year.

“Mick has done an outstanding job while in the Administration,” Trump tweeted. “I look forward to working with him in this new capacity as we continue to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN! John will be staying until the end of the year. He is a GREAT PATRIOT and I want to personally thank him for his service!”

Sen. Jon Kyl Will Resign at the End of the Year
Arizona governor will have opportunity to appoint new senator

Sen. Jon Kyl is expected to retire from the Senate again, effective Dec. 31. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl is expected to retire from the Senate at the end of the month.

The Republican senator returned to the chamber in September after Gov. Doug Ducey appointed him to replace the late Sen. John McCain. He previously served three terms in the Senate from 1995 to 2013. 

Lawmakers Reach Deal to Tackle Sexual Harassment on Capitol Hill
New agreement would end heavily criticized ‘cooling off’ period

The U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree is displayed on the West Front of the Capitol on Monday. The noble fir was harvested on Nov. 2 from Willamette National Forest in Oregon. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Congress will act quickly on compromise legislation to overhaul how sexual harassment is handled on Capitol Hill. The new proposal, released Wednesday, has the backing of leadership in both chambers and parties.

Negotiations to reconcile the separate House and Senate proposals that passed easily early this year have dragged on for months. But swift action is expected in the Senate this week and the House the following week.

Senate Releases 2019 Legislative Calendar
Features Include a two-week October recess

The Senate has released its 2019 calendar, which largely comports with their House counterparts. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

The Senate schedule for the rest of the year remains in flux, but the Senate calendar for 2019 is firmed out and generally lines up with the schedule outlined across the Dome by the new House Democratic majority.

After returning for a day to convene on Thursday, Jan. 3, the Senate will be back to work on Tuesday, Jan. 8, taking recess weeks that generally coincide with holidays, including two weeks around Easter Sunday.

John Kelly Out as White House Chief of Staff, Trump Says
Nick Ayers, VP Pence’s chief of staff, is leading candidate for job

White House Chief of Staff John Kelly speaks during a White House briefing on Oct. 19. (Win McNamee/Getty Images file photo)

President Donald Trump said Saturday White House Chief of Staff John Kelly will leave his post at the end of the year, concluding a rocky tenure during which he clashed with his boss.

“A great guy,” Trump said of the retired Marine Corps general as he left the White House for the Army-Navy football game in Philadelphia.

Why the Senate Yemen Debate Might Not Include Response to Khashoggi Murder
Republicans may seek to limit amendment scope

Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker wants to limit the scope of amendments to the Yemen resolution. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Senate is likely to proceed to a war powers resolution on U.S. involvement in Yemen next week, but the broader debate on policy toward Saudi Arabia may be short-circuited.

The Senate has not defined rules for floor debate on resolutions like the one that was recently discharged from the Foreign Relations Committee, and the chairman of that Senate panel intends to ask the chamber to set restrictive rules for amendments to war powers resolutions.

Pelosi: Pass Other Spending Bills But Punt Homeland Security Funding
House minority leader prefers continuing resolution for DHS through fiscal 2019

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., arrives with her staff to hold her weekly press conference in the Capitol on Thursday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 1:36 a.m. | House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, suggesting she doesn’t see a resolution to the partisan impasse over border wall funding, said Thursday she’d like to see the Department of Homeland Security funded on a continuing resolution through the remainder of fiscal 2019.

Seven of the 12 annual appropriations bills, including the DHS measure, are currently running on a continuing resolution that expires Friday. The House and Senate Thursday passed another stopgap to extend the funding deadline to Dec. 21. 

GOP Sen. Kennedy Not Running for Louisiana Governor
Decision to focus on the Senate is helpful for Republican vote-counting

Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., will not be running for governor. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Louisiana GOP Sen. John Kennedy announced Monday that he has decided against a run for governor next year.

“I love being in the United States Senate. I will not be a candidate for Governor in 2019,” Kennedy said in a statement. “I will, however, continue to work hard every day in D.C. and Louisiana for jobs, economic growth, cheaper health insurance, a stronger military, and an end to government waste.”

President George H.W. Bush to Lie in State in US Capitol Rotunda
Rotunda will be open to the public through the night Monday and Tuesday

President Gerald Ford’s coffin was brought into the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol during the state funeral for Ford in Washington in 2006. President George W. Bush will receive the same honor on Monday. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

The leaders of the Senate and House announced Saturday that the body of President George H.W. Bush will lie in state in the Capitol Rotunda beginning on Monday evening.

A bicameral arrival ceremony is set for 5 p.m. on Monday, according to an announcement from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.