breaking-news

Trump Boasts Tapes Bluff Forced Comey’s Truthful Testimony
President calls Comey-Mueller friendship ‘very bothersome,’ special counsel probe ‘ridiculous’

Former FBI Director James Comey testifies durilast week. On Friday, President Donald Trump declared feeling “total and complete vindication.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Attempting to cast doubt over the Justice Department investigation of Russia’s election meddling and whether he obstructed justice, Donald Trump is calling the probe “ridiculous” and the close friendship of two men at its core “troublesome.”

What’s more, the president boasted that his May 12 tweet that raised the possibility he possessed recordings of his private talks with former FBI Director James Comey forced the onetime top cop to tell the truth earlier this month when he testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee. (Trump had fired Comey three days earlier.)

Report: Mueller Investigating Whether Trump Obstructed Justice
Special counsel’s shift of focus would only deepen president’s legal woes

Special counsel Robert Mueller is looking into whether President Donald Trump attempted to obstruct justice. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Justice Department’s special counsel investigating Russia’s meddling in last year’s presidential election is now also reportedly examining whether President Donald Trump attempted to obstruct justice.

Robert Mueller, the former FBI director now leading the DOJ probe, is looking into whether the 45th president is guilty of a federal crime, The Washington Post reported Wednesday evening.

A Long History of Attacks on Members of Congress
A member and aides were shot Wednesday at a baseball practice

The Republican’ congressional baseball team’s practice Wednesday morning in Alexandria, Virginia, was the scene of the shooting of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise. Four others were wounded.  The suspected shooter was killed from the injuries he sustained during gunfire exchanged with Capitol Police officers.

This isn’t the first time members of Congress have been targeted. In fact, there have been more than 20 serious incidents since the late 1800s.

Mo Brooks Describes Shooting in Alexandria
Alabama Republican was at the GOP baseball practice

FBI personnel gather outside of the Eugene Simpson Stadium Park in Alexandria, Va., to gather evidence where House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and four others were wounded during the Republicans’ congressional baseball practice on Wednesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Alabama Rep. Mo Brooks was taking swings in the batting cage early Wednesday morning at the Republicans’ congressional baseball practice session in Alexandria, Virginia, when he heard a shooter open fire — and briefly caught a glimpse of a white, middle-aged male.

“I heard this loud ‘Blam,’” Brooks said. “I thought it was a car backfiring or something.”

What the Shooting Suspect Has Said About Republicans in Letters
James T. Hodgkinson had written several notes to the Belleville News-Democrat in 2012

Law enforcement talk outside the home of James T. Hodgkinson on Wednesday, in Belleville, Ill. Officials said Hodgkinson has been identified as the man who opened fire on Republican lawmakers at a congressional baseball practice in Alexandria, Va. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

The man suspected of wounding five people at a GOP congressional baseball team practice Wednesday morning had called on voters to remove all Republicans from Congress and further criticized the party and its members in a series of letters to an Illinois newspaper and on Facebook.

After the shooting, the Belleville News-Democrat — the suspect's hometown paper — posted nine letters written by James T. Hodgkinson during the leadup to the 2012 general election. Roll Call has reproduced three of them here — all of them are available on the newspaper's website. Highlighted are Hodgkinson's words toward Republicans.

Scalise, Shot at Baseball Practice, Known as Behind-the-Scenes Mover
Republican Whip has been credited with moving signature bills, working with Trump

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, right, celebrates the Republicans’ win in last year’s Congressional Baseball Game with Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

On the Hill, Rep. Steve Scalise works behind the scenes to convince other Republicans to line up behind his Party’s agenda.

But on the baseball field during the annual Congressional game, he plays up the middle: He’s the second baseman.

US Cybersecurity in Need of Rapid Repair, Senators Told
Ex-Pentagon aide warns of large-scale attack by North Korea

Massachusetts Sen. Edward J. Markey is concerned about cybersecurity deficiencies in the private sector, particularly in utility companies. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Cybersecurity in the United States is in a severe state of disrepair, leaving the country vulnerable to attack from hacking groups backed by its opponents, two witnesses testified in a Senate subcommittee hearing Tuesday.

The witnesses told the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy that they believe a massive cyberattack is imminent unless the U.S. ratchets up its efforts to protect against and deter offensives from countries such as Russia, China, and North Korea.

Sessions Declines to Testify About Any Conversations With Trump About Russia
Says potential exists for an executive privilege claim that has not happened

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is greeted by Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C.), right, and Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., before his testimony on Tuesday. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

BY JOHN T. BENNETT AND NIELS LESNIEWSKI, CQ ROLL CALL

Attorney General Jeff Sessions declined to answer questions Tuesday about conversations with President Donald Trump, citing the potential that the White House could assert executive privilege — which has not yet happened.

Gowdy Officially Becomes House Oversight Chairman
South Carolina Republican replaces Jason Chaffetz who leaves Congress this month

Former Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Jason Chaffetz, left, is being replaced by Rep. Trey Gowdy, right, after the Utah Republican announced he will not running for re-election. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Trey Gowdy officially took hold of the gavel on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Tuesday.

The South Carolina Republican replaced previous Chairman Jason Chaffetz, who announced in April he would end his congressional term on June 30 after deciding not to run for re-election.

Sessions to Testify in Public Hearing on Tuesday
Attorney general follows explosive Comey testimony before Intelligence panel

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has recused himself from the investigation into possible ties between Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and Russia. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Attorney General Jeff Sessions will testify Tuesday in an open hearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee for its ongoing probe into Russia’s interference in last year’s presidential election.

The public hearing was announced Monday by Intelligence Chairman Richard M. Burr and Vice Chairman Mark Warner.