campaigns

44 Sitting Members of Congress Have Accepted Donations From Trump
Group includes prominent lawmakers from both parties

Arizona Sen. John McCain, whom President-elect Donald Trump once criticized, has received the most donations of any current lawmaker from Trump. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Much has been said about how Vice President-elect Mike Pence, with his 12 years as a congressman, could be incoming President Donald Trump’s bridge to Congress. But Trump has his own ties to the Hill, in the form of nearly two decades worth of political contributions to sitting members of the House and Senate on both sides of the aisle.

Trump has donated to the campaigns of 44 current members of Congress, according to a Roll Call review of Federal Election Commission electronic records that are available since 1997. Nineteen of those members are in the Senate, and 25 are in the House.

For 20, a New Year’s Boost in House Legislative Sway
How the winners of top committee assignments made their own luck

Keep an eye peeled for these House members with plum new committee assignments, from left to right, first row: Pete Aguilar, Earl L. “Buddy” Carter, Katherine M. Clark, Ryan A. Costello, Carlos Curbelo; second row: Suzan DelBene, Debbie Dingell, Brian Higgins, John Moolenaar, Grace Meng; third row: Dan Newhouse, Scott Peters, Mark Pocan, Raul Ruiz, David Schweikert; fourth row: Terri A. Sewell, Scott Taylor, Tim Walberg, Jackie Walorski and Mimi Walters. (Bill Clark, Meredith Dake-O’Connor and Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photos. Scott Taylor courtesy Scott Taylor for U.S. Congress)

Specialization seasoned with seniority is the surest recipe for a meaningful legislative career in the House, which is more than big enough to swallow all the dilettantes and short-timers without a trace. It’s finding a substantive niche, then fitting in over the long haul, that proves perennially frustrating for many members. 

But the goal of becoming a successful and substantive lawmaker just got a whole lot easier for a score of them.

Report: Hunter Used Campaign Funds to Fly Family Rabbit
Comes after son used campaign credit card for playing video games

Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., used $600 in campaign money to fly a family rabbit, an ongoing review of his expenses revealed.

Self-funder Among GOP Members Asking Colleagues for Debt Help
Indiana’s Trey Hollingsworth is worth nearly $60 million

Indiana Rep.-elect Trey Hollingsworth is on a list of GOP members asking their colleagues for help with unpaid campaign expenses. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Indiana Rep.-elect Trey Hollingsworth loaned his campaign more than $3 million of his own money to get elected in the 9th District this year. But he’s now asking his new colleagues in the House to help with his unpaid campaign bills. 

Hollingsworth is one of ten members-elect on a list of candidates with campaign debt that the National Republican Congressional Committee distributed to the House GOP caucus. Two returning congressmen were on this year’s list, Carlos Curbelo of Florida and Will Hurd of Texas. Lawmakers can use their own campaign accounts or leadership PACs to help their indebted colleagues.

Donors to HHS Nominee Have Stakes in FDA, Medicare Decisions
Trump’s choice is a break from trend of presidents tapping governors and academics

Health and Human Services Secretary designee Tom Price would oversee issues including a major congressional overhaul of rules on how Medicare pays doctors. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Companies and trade groups that have donated to Rep. Tom Price’s campaign funds have major financial stakes in the decisions that he will oversee if confirmed as the next Health and Human Services secretary.

Among the contributors is a maker of placenta-based wound care products that’s in open conflict with a rival over Food and Drug Administration regulations. Based about a dozen miles from the Georgia Republican’s district office, MiMedx Group stands out among Price’s contributors for giving big money relative to its size.

Stopgap Bill Adds Money for Flint, Paves Way for Mattis Confirmation Vote
Heads off partial shutdown by extending funding through April 28

House Appropriations Chairman Harold Rogers described Tuesday’s stopgap spending bill to avert a partial government shutdown as a “Band-Aid.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Congressional negotiators released a stopgap spending bill Tuesday night to avert a partial government shutdown at midnight Friday and to fund federal agencies and programs through April 28.

Final details of the 70-page continuing resolution were hammered out behind closed doors Tuesday while both Republicans and Democrats warned that various provisions and possible additions to the package were causing problems.

Balancing Risk and Reward in Trump’s Surprising First Hill Battle
Delaying budget finish until he’s president means his priorities must wait, creates an opening for Democrats

On the Hill before Thanksgiving, Vice President-elect Mike Pence announced that Donald Trump wants this year’s budget to wait until he’s president. Incoming Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer will decide if the spending bill is where Democrats draw their oppositional line. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Donald Trump’s presidential transition is already salted with plenty of big surprises. For Congress, the most unsettling may be his decision to start his legislative agenda-setting by ignoring this famous life lesson:

“Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today,” goes the aphorism often attributed to one of Trump’s most accomplished predecessors, Thomas Jefferson.

Trump to Pick Nikki Haley as U.N. Ambassador
South Carolina governor, president-elect have complicated history

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley earned praise for navigating through the Confederate battle flag controversy. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President-elect Donald Trump is expected Wednesday to nominate South Carolina Gov. Nikki R. Haley to be his ambassador to the United Nations, according to multiple media outlets.

A source familiar with the decision confirmed Haley’s selection to Roll Call. The Post and Courier newspaper in Charleston first reported the news early Wednesday.

Senate Democrats Can't Stop Sessions, So How Much Will They Fight?
AG hopeful only needs a majority to approve his nomination

Sen. Jeff Sessions is President-elect Donald Trump’s choice to lead the Justice Department. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for attorney general leaves Senate Democrats with a complicated choice.

Sen. Jeff Sessions appears poised to lead the Justice Department, despite accusations of racism that derailed his nomination for a federal judgeship three decades ago. As far as records go back, no sitting senator has ever been denied confirmation to a Cabinet post.

Campaign Finance Laws Poised for Rollback Under Trump
GOP expected to be aggressive in lifting regulations on parties

President-elect Donald Trump could find common ground with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in efforts to overhaul political money laws that seek to put ordinary Americans on more equal footing with megadonors (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As a candidate, President-elect Donald Trump railed against the political money system, saying it offers big donors outsized clout. But the changes he is likely to enable would roll back campaign finance regulations, allowing contributors to give even more.

The Republican’s victory in the presidential contest has given new hope to opponents of current donation limits and other restrictions, while it has jolted fear into those who want to overhaul political money laws to put ordinary Americans on more equal footing with megadonors.